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Lewis Hamilton on pole in Japan

Lewis Hamilton has pipped fanatical rival and team-mate Fernando Alonso to pole position in tomorrow’s Japanese Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton

Could this be the moment when the young rookie driver, in his first season of Formula One, shows his class and stamps his dominance on his opponent?

Before practice began there was much talk of the bitterness between the two men and Hamilton’s determination not to let his season’s magnificent start slip away.

He was said to be upping the ante in his ferocious world title scrap with Alonso, dismissing him as “not the person I imagined” and promising to match him blow for blow on the track.

We shall see.

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Alonso could go to Ferrari

With Felipe Massa negotiating a deal with Toyota, disgraced McLaren driver Fernando Alonso may seek a face-saving move to the outfit he helped defeat his own team, McLaren, in the recent spygate scandal.

Talk about a melting pot, the current swirling state of driver allegiances within Formula One, after a gripping season on the track, is enough to make a publicist weep.

Lewis Hamilton is still 2-points ahead of Spaniard Alonso with three races to complete. It’s all to race for, but no-one expects Alonso to give the rookie Englishman an easy ride.

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Alonso obstructs Lewis Hamilton in Belgium

Here we go again. The gathering feud between Fernando Alonso, who thinks he’s hard done-by because team-mate Lewis Hamilton is not “slowed down” by McLaren, and Hamilton himself, who is just doing his best, erupted in the Belgian Grand Prix.

Kimi Raikkonen, the winner for Ferrari

That’s not even mentioning the feud between Ferrari and McLaren, or the bad blood beween FIA and the British team — fined a massive £50m ($100m) last week for allegedly receiving stolen intellectual property from a disgruntled Ferrari mechanic.

On the first bend Alonso clearly drove the British rookie off the track, but struggled to reach third place. Hamilton came in fourth, losing one point to the big bully ahead of him.

Later, Hamilton complained, “The last few years I have been watching F1 and Fernando has always been complaining about other people being unfair. It was blatant. He pushed me wide quite deliberately. For someone who is trying to set a standard, he is not living up to it. “There was enough room for us both to get round, but suddenly I didn’t have any room. It was not a fair or race manoeuvre. I was lucky there was a run-off area.”

Top Ten Race Result
1 K Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 1hr 20min 39.066sec
2 F Massa (Brz) Ferrari 1:20:43.761
3 F Alonso (Sp) McLaren 1:20:53.409
4 L Hamilton (GB) McLaren 1:21:02.681
5 N Heidfeld (G) BMW Sauber 1:21:30.945
6 N Rosberg (G) Williams 1:21:55.942
7 M Webber (A) Red Bull 1:21:59.701
8 H Kovalainen (Fin) Renault 1:22:04.172
9 R Kubica (Pol) BMW Sauber 1:22:04.727
10 R Schumacher (G) Toyota 1:22:07.640

Drivers’ Championship
1 Hamilton 97pts
2 Alonso 95
3 Raikkonen 84
4 Massa 77
5 Heidfeld 56
6 Kubica 33
7 Kovalainen 22
8 Fisichella 17
9 Rosberg 15
10 Wurz 13

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McLaren takes monster hit from FIA

After taking a one-two win in the Italian Grand Prix over local rivals Ferrari (Alonso 1st, Lewis Hamilton 2nd), McLaren came back to earth today as FIA, F1′s ruling body, imposed a gigantic $100m (£50m) fine on Ron Dennis’s crack racing team.

McLaren has also been eliminated from this season’s Constructors’ Championship, and possibly next’s as well.

At least Hamilton retains his points, and 3-point lead in the Drivers’ Championship in his rookie season.

The fine, however, is so huge, it may just be a warning shot to all the teams that espionage against rivals will not be tolerated. At appeal, it seems likely McLaren will be let off much of this impost. Why would FIA want to put them out of business?

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