• Japanese Grand Prix

Qualifying postponed until Sunday as rain hits Suzuka

ESPNF1 Staff
October 9, 2010 « Schumacher feeling great at Suzuka | »
Conditions got worse with each track inspection © Getty Images

Qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix has been postponed until Sunday morning after terrible weather conditions hit the circuit.

Rain intensified during the final practice session until the point that drivers were reporting that the track was undriveable. The qualifying session was supposed to get underway at 14:00 local time but, after it was held off for an hour and a half, the FIA race director Charlie Whiting admitted to the inevitable and postponed it until Sunday. It will now take place at 10:00 in the morning if conditions allow.

"With so much rain, we cannot start qualifying - not in these conditions," Whiting told France's Auto Hebdo website.

He confirmed that qualifying will be held on Sunday morning: "That's feasible because there is no minimum time between qualifying and the race."

Mercedes boss Ross Brawn told BBC Sport: "We don't mind having a go but it's just too dangerous out there. The scenario now is that there will be a qualifying session tomorrow morning when the track will probably still be damp. The forecast is for the conditions to recover ahead of tomorrow for a dry race."

Suzuka qualifying was held on Sunday morning in 2004 in order to avoid the typhoon Ma-on. In the very unlikely circumstances that no qualifying session is possible ahead of the race the cars will start in numerical order.