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F1 Permutations: When and Where Can Red Bull and Max Verstappen Win 2023’s Formula 1 World Titles?

How Red Bull Can Clinch Formula 1’s Constructors’ Championship at Suzuka.

(Photo: Jay Hirano)

Red Bull’s first significant opportunity to secure the Formula 1 Constructors’ Championship for the second consecutive year comes at the Japanese Grand Prix this Sunday. Max Verstappen, however, will need to wait at least two more weeks until the Qatar Grand Prix for his first chance to claim his third drivers’ title.

The reigning champions’ long unbeaten streak ended decisively in Singapore, meaning that an early chance to clinch the Constructors’ Championship there was never realistically on the cards from practice onwards. However, this loss did not significantly alter the broader season championship picture, as Red Bull had been overwhelmingly dominant up to that point, making their 2023 titles a matter of “when” rather than “if.” Verstappen now starts from a commanding pole position again at Suzuka on Sunday.

How Can Red Bull Win the Constructors’ Championship in Japan?

For Red Bull to celebrate their sixth Constructors’ Championship on Sunday, they must finish the Suzuka race with a lead of 309 points or more over their nearest rivals. Currently, second-placed Mercedes and third-placed Ferrari remain mathematically in contention after Ferrari’s victory in Singapore. Red Bull leads Mercedes by 308 points and Ferrari by 332 points.

Conditions for Winning the Title at Suzuka

To secure the 2023 Constructors’ Championship at Suzuka, Red Bull must:

1. Outscore Mercedes by at least one point.

2. Ensure Ferrari does not outscore them by 24 points.

The odds are heavily in Red Bull’s favor, as Singapore marked the only instance this year where Mercedes outscored Red Bull by two points, while Ferrari last managed to pull 24 points ahead of Red Bull at the season opener in Bahrain 2022.

Historical Context and Honda Partnership

If Red Bull clinches the title in Japan, they will become the first team in history to win the Constructors’ Championship with six races remaining in a campaign. Suzuka, owned by Honda, continues to have a technical partnership with Red Bull in producing the team’s engines.

How Soon Can Max Verstappen Clinch the Drivers’ Championship?

Although Verstappen did not extend his points lead sufficiently over teammate Sergio Perez at Marina Bay to secure the title in Japan for the second year running, he is on track to officially wrap up the championship at the Qatar Grand Prix on October 6-8. Verstappen’s lead is currently 151 points, and to be champion in Qatar, he needs to be at least 146 points ahead in the standings.

Remaining Races in the 2023 Season

– Japanese GP: September 22-24, 6am UK time

– Qatar GP: October 6-8, 6pm UK time

– United States GP: October 20-22, 8pm UK time

– Mexico City GP: October 27-29, 8pm UK time

– Sao Paulo GP: November 3-5, 5pm UK time

– Las Vegas GP: November 17-19, 6am UK time

– Abu Dhabi GP: November 24-26, 1pm UK time

With Verstappen already assured of ending the season with the most race wins, Perez needs to close the gap by six points or more over the Japan and Qatar weekends to bring the difference down to 145 points, delaying Verstappen’s coronation. Notably, Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso are the only drivers not yet officially out of the championship race, but this will change after Sunday unless they outscore Verstappen by 15 and 25 points, respectively.

## Get Ready for the Japanese Grand Prix

Set your alarms as Formula 1 heads to Suzuka for the Japanese GP. Watch all sessions live on Sky Sports F1 from September 22-24, and stream F1 on Sky Sports with NOW, with the flexibility to cancel anytime.

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