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Until Malaysia joined the calendar in 1999, Japan was the only Asian nation to host a Formula One race and I love shooting this event.

Spectators also get a great deal with the cheapest 3-day general admittance ticket all year which actually gets you access to a couple of grand stands. But perhaps it’s the fans that stand out most to me. They are immensely polite and if you can make the Thursday pit lane walk, you’ll love the colourful outfits and signs on display.

The ferris wheel offers a great view of the track and runs all day. There is also a go-kart track near an entrance that I took my kids on many years ago.

F1 Japan Track


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Lewis Hamilton says he always lands into Tokyo and takes the bullet train to Nagoya. I’ve done this many times. It’s a memorable experience and you can see Mt Fuji on days when the skies are clear.

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The drawback for me with this race though is the accommodation. There are no 4 or 5 star properties in the small town and the rooms that are on offer are normally tiny AND in many cases, smell strongly of cigarettes.

You can stay in Nagoya where there are larger western style hotels but if you drive, expect to spend at least an hour on the freeway each way and have to shell out plenty on tolls. The train is a quicker and much cheaper option. Most of the drivers stay at the hotel at the track but it’s impossible to secure a room there as the teams have first option.

One of the best spots to sit is at turns 16 and 17 where the cars break heavily for the right hander having taken R130 at full tilt. I often shoot from the inside of this section of track where the ferris wheel features strongly in the background.

F1 Japan Haas

ABOUT THE Japanese


The Japanese Grand Prix is held at the Suzuka circuit about an hour’s drive from Nagoya on a track that offers plenty of challenges. It’s the only track on the calendar with a crossover and it boasts the 5th highest average speed, 226km/hr.

Since 1987

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Number of Laps:


Circuit Length:


Race Distance:


Lap Record:


Lewis Hamilton (2019)

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Japanese Grand Prix Results 2023

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Position Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3
1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:29.878 1:29.964 1:28.877
2 Oscar Piastri McLaren 1:30.439 1:30.122 1:29.458
3 Lando Norris McLaren 1:30.063 1:30.296 1:29.493
4 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1:30.393 1:29.940 1:29.542
5 Sergio Pérez Red Bull 1:30.652 1:29.965 1:29.650
6 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1:30.651 1:30.067 1:29.850
7 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:30.811 1:30.040 1:29.908
8 George Russell Mercedes 1:30.811 1:30.268 1:30.219
9 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1:30.733 1:30.204 1:30.303
10 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin 1:30.971 1:30.465 1:30.560
11 Liam Lawson AlphaTauri 1:30.425 1:30.508
12 Pierre Gasly Alpine F1 Team 1:30.843 1:30.509
13 Alexander Albon Williams 1:30.941 1:30.537
14 Esteban Ocon Alpine F1 Team 1:30.960 1:30.586
15 Kevin Magnussen Haas F1 Team 1:30.976 1:30.665
16 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 1:31.049
17 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1:31.181
18 Nico Hülkenberg Haas F1 Team 1:31.299
19 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo 1:31.398
20 Logan Sargeant Williams
Position Driver Team Time Points
1 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:30:58.421 26
2 Lando Norris McLaren +19.387 18
3 Oscar Piastri McLaren +36.494 15
4 Charles Leclerc Ferrari +43.998 12
5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes +49.376 10
6 Carlos Sainz Ferrari +50.221 8
7 George Russell Mercedes +57.659 6
8 Fernando Alonso Aston Martin +1:14.725 4
9 Esteban Ocon Alpine F1 Team +1:19.678 2
10 Pierre Gasly Alpine F1 Team +1:23.155 1
11 Liam Lawson AlphaTauri 0
12 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 0
13 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo 0
14 Nico Hülkenberg Haas F1 Team 0
15 Kevin Magnussen Haas F1 Team 0
16 Alexander Albon Williams 0
17 Logan Sargeant Williams 0
18 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 0
19 Sergio Pérez Red Bull 0
20 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo 0

Japanese Grand Prix Guide

If you're planning to attend the Japanese Grand Prix, here's some information that you'll find invaluable.