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Suzuka Circuit Celebrates Half Century At Japanese Grand Prix

This is turning out to be quite a year for 50th anniversaries. There are many momentous occasions celebrating their half century in 2012. 1962 saw the release of the Beatles first single “Love Me Do”, as well as the first James Bond film `Dr. No`.

This weekend sees the 2012 Japanese Grand Prix, due to go ahead on Sunday the 7th of October at 3pm. It will take place at the Suzuka International Racing Course in Suzuka City. It is an illustrious racing track which also happens to be celebrating its 50th birthday this year.

The Suzuka Circuit was created in 1962 by the noted Dutch track and race car designer John Hugenholtz. It started out as a test track for Honda, but would eventually host the Japanese Grand Prix for over two decades.

The race was originally held at Fuji Speedway in 1976. It returned there the very next year, before Japan was taken off the circuit. When Japanese racing made a comeback in 1987, however, it found a new home in Suzuka City. This is where it then remained for the next twenty years.

The Suzuka International Racing Course resembles a figure eight and is considered one of the most difficult tracks in the sport. It is now the site of this year’s Japanese Grand Prix.

It was won in 2011 by Jenson Button, whom may be reeling from the news his McLaren team mate Lewis Hamilton is leaving, to join Mercedes. Japanese racing fans are also welcoming local hero Kamui Kobayashi. The driver with Sauber is a superstar in Japan.

Will he have a win on home soil? Or will Red Bull’s Webber and Vettel, following on from his win in Singapore, go and spoil the party?

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