Sebastian Vettel crashed while Jenson Button, the only man standing between the Red Bull driver and a second Formula One title, was quickest in both Japanese Grand Prix practice sessions on Friday.
Vettel, who needs only a point on Sunday to be the sport's youngest double champion at the age of 24, made a rare error on the exit to the Degner 1 curve at the end of a warm morning practice at Suzuka.
He skimmed across the gravel and ended the 90-minute session by joining marshals behind the crash barriers with his car's nose in the tyre wall.
"It wasn't a big mistake this morning, but in that moment I wasn't 100 percent awake and mistakes around here can be quite costly," said the German, who was third fastest in both sessions.
‘Vettel will relish this title like first’
Suzuka, Japan: Seven-time Formula One world champion Michael Schumacher believes fellow German Sebastian Vettel will savour his second crown as much as the first if he wins the title in Japan on Sunday.
Vettel, who needs to finish just 10th this weekend at Suzuka to become the youngest two-time champion in Formula One history, won the 2010 championship in the last race in Abu Dhabi in a nail-biting finish to the season.
Mallya denies Force India sale to Sahara
Suzuka, Japan: Force India chairman Vijay Mallya has no plans to sell the Formula One team and has pledged a long-term commitment ahead of the country's maiden grand prix later this month.
Media reports in India had said the liquor baron was in talks to sell the team to business conglomerate Sahara Group.