Although Vettel trails Hamilton by 50 points in the drivers' championship with just five races left this season, he denied that this Sunday presents his last chance to dent the Briton's lead and mount a realistic title challenge.
Briton Hamilton, fastest ahead of team mate Valtteri Bottas in first practice, lapped the 5.8-km Suzuka circuit even quicker in the later session, posting one minute, 28.217 seconds.
Alonso finished 18th, while Lando Norris, the British teenager who is being promoted to McLaren's race team next year, was last, four seconds slower than Hamilton.
"This track is awesome", he whooped over the team radio.
Mercedes took a surprise step forward in Singapore in September, a track that had traditionally been a bogey circuit for them, and Hamilton took pole and a dominant win. "But overall I think it has been okay".
"Obviously you don't want to commit suicide, so I think if we attack we will still try to be reasonable".
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I think of Louis Van Gaal being sacked on the evening of an [FA Cup] final and finding out from other people. Even all the players, they make mistakes that are not normal. "A good professional who works really hard".
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If Van Dyke had to serve six for each of the 16 counts and do so one sentence after another that would add up to 96 years. They were waiting for someone to arrive with a stun gun to use on the teenager when 40-year-old Van Dyke showed up.
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He said that authorities concerned caught them and put them in detention centre following their conviction by a competent court. CJI Gogoi also pointed out that the country of their origin, Myanmar, has identified them, and is ready to issue the COI.
"In the end we tried something on the vehicle that seemed to give us a bit better feeling, so let's see if we can get it together tomorrow and find something else".
Vettel must overhaul Hamilton at a rate of 10 points per race if he is to wrestle back control of the 2018 title, but downplayed that it is a case of "now or never" in the scrap.
"In the morning they were quicker through nearly every corner but they had a softer tyre".
"I'm just loving driving more than ever; when you get in the vehicle, it's just the best".
"I'm just loving driving more than ever; when you get in the vehicle, it's just the best, it's so fast and I'm so grateful to have the opportunity to do what I do". "We're expecting some rain overnight and the wind looks strong tomorrow which could make things tricky for the drivers in qualifying".
"The headline times from today do flatter us but we can still find some time working on the balance both on a single lap and a long run", he concluded.
"But overall the auto felt pretty good throughout all sectors, I just had some balance issues, struggling a bit with understeer". "Today I think we were both sliding a little bit too much and therefore damaging the tires a bit more than others", he added.