Bouncing back from a poor start and a scruffy opening stint to claim his fifth consecutive race win in 2013 means that Sebastian Vettel is tantalisingly close to securing his fourth world championship - but he's not over the finishing line yet.

Vettel comes out of this weekend with a 90 point lead over Fernando Alonso in the drivers championship, but with four races remaining (India, Abu Dhabi, US and Brazil) there's still a total of 100 points left on the table that the Ferrari driver could theoretically pick up before the chequered flag falls on the 2013 season.

The fact remains that as long as Vettel comes out of India with a 75 point advantage over his rival, then the title battle will be over.

Related Articles

That doesn't leave Alonso with a lot of room to manoeuvre, and he absolutely must now finish ahead of Vettel at the Buddh International Circuit if he's to extend this year's championship for a further Grand Prix.

But even if Alonso were to win next time out, all Vettel has to do is finish fifth place or better and it's all over. Of course it's not impossible - a retirement for the Red Bull is by no means out of the question despite the team's recent bullet-proof reliability, KERS glitches aside, and you can never rule out a costly first-lap skirmish ending in an early retirement.

But the likelihood now is that in two weeks time we'll be celebrating the latest Sebastian Vettel championship, and the focus will turn on the runners-up position. With Vettel out in front with 297 points compared to Alonso's current haul of 207 points, there's a 30 point deficit back to Kimi Raikkonen (177 points) and then Lewis Hamilton (161), Mark Webber (148) and Nico Rosberg (126).

Given those figures, Alonso looks set to claim the runners-up spot but he's still within reach of Raikkonen, and neither man can consider themselves safe from a potential late lunge from Lewis Hamilton.

In the constructors championship, a 1-2 for Red Bull yields maximum championship points and puts them on 445 points coming out of Suzuka, now a mighty 147 points over Ferrari with Mercedes a further ten points in arrears on 287 points. That's 30 points added to Red Bull's lead in just a single outing.

Could Red Bull clinch the constructors title at the same time as Vettel wins the drivers title? Most certainly: after India there will be just 129 constructors points remaining to pick up in the remaining three events, and that would require a team to pick up three back-to-back 1-2 finishes for the rest of the season - hardly a likely scenario.

But for that to even be a theoretical possibility, Ferrari must somehow rein in Red Bull by more than 18 points at India. If that doesn't happen, then Vettel and Red Bull could quite easily both be celebrating their joint fourth world championships in a fortnight.

In reality Ferrari's attention is now on holding on to the second spot ahead of Mercedes in what will be a close finish between the teams. Lotus aren't far behind on 264 points and could yet stage a late ambush on the pair of them, especially with Grosjean on the sort of form we saw from him in Japan.

A long, long way back in fifth is McLaren on just 83 points, but they've pulled out a decent advantage over Force India who are on 62 points. Force India themselves are now looking anxiously in their rear view mirrors on the suddenly surging Sauber team who have pulled away from Toro Rosso on 45 points, which just goes to show that while the championships might be all-but locked, there's still plenty for the other teams to play for in the remaining races of 2013.

See full championship standings.