The 1990 Japanese Grand Prix is the fifteenth and penultimate round of the 1990 FIA Formula One World Championship.
This race was notable for the first-corner collision between title contenders Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost, which ultimately handed Senna the title, since he entered the round nine points ahead of Prost.
The race was won by Nelson Piquet from Benetton. ahead of his team-mate Roberto Moreno. Aguri Suzuki finished third in his Larrousse. It was also the first race to have a Japanese Formula One driver in the Top 3.
Prior to the race, Senna requested that the pole position be on the left side of the track since it was much more cleaner than the other. This plea was rejected by FIA president Jean-Marie Balestre.
Nigel Mansell, who was originally to retire at the end of the year, reversed his decision by signing for Williams on a two-year deal. This proved to be the best idea, as Mansell would become the World Champion in 1992.
Jean Alesi did not started the race due to a neck injury during Friday's practice, even if he qualified for the race. His grid position (7th) was left empty, and the race would have 25 starters instead of 26.
Life and EuroBrun withdrew from the sport. EuroBrun's Roberto Moreno joined the Benetton team, replacing Italian Alessandro Nannini, whose Formula One career ended because of injuries suffered in a helicopter crash, after the Spanish Grand Prix.
The full entry list for the 1990 Japanese Grand Prix is shown below:
McLaren driver Gerhard Berger was the fastest man in the first qualifying session, with a time of 1:38.374, ahead of Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna.
Senna would eventually take pole position with a time of 1:36.996, ahead of Alain Prost and Nigel Mansell. Jean Alesi, Stefano Modena and David Brabham did not set a time in this session.
|______________||Andrea de Cesaris|
* - Jean Alesi did not start
- Olivier Grouillard, Gabriele Tarquini, Yannick Dalmas and Bertrand Gachot failed to make into the Top 26, and did not qualify for the race.
And so, because of Balestre's objection, the pole remained on the right side of the grid. However, this didn't stop Senna, as he sprinted away at the start, but Prost took the lead. Senna went through on the inside and deliberately collided with Prost, sending both drivers off the track. Senna was crowned the 1990 Formula One World Champion.
The reason for this crash was because of the controversial collision at last year's race, when Prost and Senna were McLaren team-mates. While Prost retired, Senna drove through the escape road to rejoin, and was ultimately disqualified, handing Prost the 1989 title. Senna did this as revenge on Prost for last year.
The race was won by Benetton's Nelson Piquet, his first in three years. Completing the podium were his team-mate Roberto Moreno and home hero Aguri Suzuki. This remains the last Grand Prix to date without a European driver on the podium.
- Last non-European podium to date.
- First win for Nelson Piquet since the 1987 Italian Grand Prix.
Standings after raceEdit
|Japanese Grand Prix|
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