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Verstappen dominates as Formula 1 returns with Japan practice sessions

Following the first practice session at the Japanese Grand Prix, it seems that things have returned to their usual course after the unusual situation that occurred at the Singapore GP last weekend.

Max Verstappen once again asserted his dominance in the first of two sessions at the Suzuka circuit, while his teammate, Sergio Perez, had another challenging afternoon, finishing in 11th place.

The session's surprise came from Lando Norris, who managed in the final seconds to sneak in between the two Ferraris that finished second and fourth.

Positions in Practice 1 of the Japanese Grand Prix:

  1. Max Verstappen (Red Bull) - 1:31.647
  2. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) - 1:32.273
  3. Lando Norris (McLaren) - 1:32.392
  4. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) - 1:32.574
  5. Tsunoda (Alpha Tauri) - 1:32.597
  6. Fernando Alonso (Aston Martin) - 1:32.650
  7. Oscar Piastri (McLaren) - 1:32.713
  8. Alex Albon (Williams) - 1:32.991
  9. Liam Lawson (Alpha Tauri) - 1:33.005
  10. Lance Stroll (Aston Martin) - 1:33.040
  11. Checo Perez (Red Bull) - 1:33.043

In the beginning of Practice 1, Perez managed to stay near the top positions alongside Verstappen. Meanwhile, the Ferrari drivers had discussions with their engineers in the pit lane, resulting in an improvement in their performance.

Perez fell short of Verstappen's 1:31.647, finishing in 11th place with a lap time of 1:33.043, just behind his former teammate Lance Stroll.

At one point, Checo caused a momentary scare when, with just a few minutes remaining in the practice session, he ran wide off the track, preventing him from recording faster times in the final part of the session.

Another positive note for the local fans was Yuki Tsunoda's commendable fifth-place finish, delighting the spectators in the stands.

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