Alonso rules in Japan

Renault's Fernando Alonso took a superb victory in the Japanese Grand Prix as title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa collided in a dramatic race yesterday.

Renault's Fernando Alonso took a superb victory in the Japanese Grand Prix as title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa collided in a dramatic race yesterday.

Hamilton made a poor start, ran off the road at the first corner and was tipped into a spin by Massa on lap two.

Both were given penalties for different incidents but Massa recovered to take seventh and cut Hamilton's lead to five points with two races left.

Hamilton, his car damaged by Massa, was 12th and out of the points.

Massa finished eighth on the road, but was promoted to seventh when Toro Rosso's Sebastien Bourdais was penalised 25 seconds, demoting him to 12th, for a collision with the Brazilian on lap 51.

Hamilton is still in a strong position but the Englishman will have to cut out the mistakes that have characterised his season if he is not to lose the championship for the second year in a row.

"What can I say? It was a bad day. I'll move on to next week [in China]," said Hamilton.

Massa is not Hamilton's only title rival. BMW Sauber's Robert Kubica is 12 points off the lead and cannot be ruled out. - BBC

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