Typhoon Hagibis latest: F1 Japanese Grand Prix under serious threat of direct impact | F1 | Sport


Typhoon Hagibis has reached the highest level of “violent” and there is a strong threat of direct impact at Suzuka for the Japanese Grand Prix this weekend.

The storm has increased in intensity over the Pacific Ocean in recent days and reached super typhoon status on Tuesday.

Wind speeds have already been registered at 195mph, Joint Typhoon Warning Centre.

Forecasters have predicted the typhoon could make landfall in Japan this weekend, which could cause major issues for the F1 Grand Prix.

Former F1 meteorologist Steffen Dietz, who suggests the biggest impact could come on Saturday during FP3 or qualifying.

“#Hagibis has explosively intensified and is now already a super typhoon! (= hurricane category 4),” he tweeted.

“Track forecast towards Japan and #F1 is quite consistent.

“Likelihood for any impact is high, however, details remain uncertain at this stage.

“Generally the system will weaken significantly before reaching Japan, but it will stay powerful.

“Today models see a slightly faster propagation, so main impact on #F1 could be already on Saturday.”

The Suzuka Circuit is one of the most popular tracks among Formula One drivers because of it’s fast flowing corners along with the challenging S-curves.

But it is also shrouded in controversy due to the unpredictable weather in the area.

The most controversial moment though came in 2014 when Jules Bianchi crashed in what led to his tragic death.

The days leading up to the race weekend in 2014, Typhoon Phanfone was threatening to wash out the Grand Prix.

And heavy rain on the Sunday meant the race had to be started behind a safety car with reduced visibility.

The race was then stopped after just two laps as the weather failed to improve but resumed 20 minutes later, with Bianchi suffering his fatal crash on lap 43.

The French racing driver sustained severe head injuries in the accident where he was placed into an induced come, only to succumb to his injuries in July 2015.


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