McLaren-Mercedes CEO Martin Whitmarsh has said that the Japanese Grand Prix should be good one for the Woking-based outfit.

Although Ron Dennis' men were not in contention in Belgium last weekend and were rather comprehensively beaten by the Scuderia, Whitmarsh reckons that the MP4-22 will compare well to the F2007 next Sunday.

He also thinks that the final few races will be extremely interesting, especially as it is so close in terms of the drivers' championship, with four drivers' still in the mix.

"Three races to go, two points separating Lewis and Fernando with the two main rivals both within 20 points, it is going to be an absorbing end to what we feel has been an exciting season for the sport," he confirmed.

"It is always interesting to be racing at a new circuit too, it will place more importance on Friday's running and we expect to see a lot of track action as everyone becomes acclimatised to the track and its new layout.

"From what we understand of the track layout, it should lead to some exciting racing. In addition its characteristics will suit the MP4-22, but not necessarily with the margin we have seen at some tracks such as Monza and Indianapolis."

Mercedes boss, Norbert Haug meanwhile added that Fuji Speedway will be a 'great challenge'.

"The Japanese Grand Prix's return to the Mount Fuji circuit after 30 years marks the beginning of the final stages of the World Championship, with three races in four weekends leading up to the finale in Sao Paulo on October 21," he continued.

"In 1976 and 1977, the circuit was the venue for two dramatic season finales. The front straight of the remodelled Fuji circuit is almost 1.5 kilometres long, the longest on any current Formula 1 circuit.

"As we calculated, the top speed at its end will be about 315 km/h, by which time the cars will have raced at full throttle for some 20 seconds, which is one of the longest full throttle sections on the calendar.

"Whilst top speed is important on this straight, the set-up has to be suitable also for the following six left-hand and 10 right-hand corners, which are all tackled at comparatively low speeds.

"It will be a great challenge for drivers and engineers to find the correct set-up, particularly, because no team ever tested on this track before.

"It is our target for Fuji to maintain our one-two lead in the Drivers' Championship," Haug concluded.

 

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