Nyck De Vries, the great protagonist of the 2011 World Championship, makes no mistake at Suzuka and takes home the second consecutive world title, not too long before he will say goodbye to karting to move up to single-seaters.
Report Vroom / Photos Japankart
The final classification leaves no doubt: De Vries is World Champion for the second consecutive time thanks to the continuity of results on all circuits. Albon stumbles into a bad weekend, and Camponeschi nearly beats him for the runner-up spot, missing it by only 8 points.
1) De Vries, 291
2) Albon, 246
3) Camponeschi, 238
4) D'Agosto, 221
5) Basz, 215
The Suzuka weekend starts off with Birel driver from Poland Karol Basz leaving a strong mark in the scores. Basz stops the second fastest time in Saturday's qualifying behind D’Agosto, with the main pretender to the title Albon that takes the third fastest time, while De Vries does not go beyond 14th fastest. The Birel driver goes on to win Race 1 and 2, with De Vries that comes back up to 5th place just behind Albon also stopping the fastest lap in Race 1 (Camponeschi ends 2nd), and find the last step of the podium in Race 2, only 4/10 behind local hero Kanamaru. Camponeschi loses 2 positions, finishing ahead of his teammate D’Agosto and Albon.
Sunday program sees Camponeschi taking the pole by 0”031 on a flying De Vries who gives everything he’s got despite the 22 points advantage on Albon (and the possibility to discard the worst result of the weekend). Race 3 is very tight, with De Vries who tries to run away with the win but is tailed by D’Agosto, who manages to go through the Dutchman with 3 laps to go. De Vries settles with 2nd place and a 31 points lead on his direct opponent Albon, who ends in 5th behind Basz and Camponeschi (fastest lap of the race).
Race 4 is almost a formality, but without the mathematical certainty De Vries charges on. At the start he takes a safety distance racing a few tenths down the leading group firmly in 5th place (Albon found himself last on the first lap after contact), with D'Agosto, Sasaki and Ishii fighting for first place. By halfway through the race, De Vries is 3rd and decides it’s time to go after D’Agosto who’s in the lead. After a few laps, the Dutch driver is through, suffers the comeback of the Italian, but with three laps to go grabs the lead again to close with a win. Fujinami and Sasaki complete the podium, with Basz and D’Agosto following a second and a half behind.