Motor-racing - and outgoing world champion James Hunt of Britain, who led all the way in the last race of the 1977 grand prix series in Japan, saw his victory marred by a crash which killed a track official and a spectator after a Ferrari left the track.
GVs Cars on grid and start of Japanese motor-racing Grand Prix, Fuji, near Tokyo. (3 shots)
GV Britain's James Hunt leads cars.
GV Cars around track
GV Hunt leads cars through bend followed by Jody Scheckter of South Africa and Jochen Mass of West Germany.
GV Two cars on side of track.
GV Marshal waving flag.
GV Cars around track
GV Marshal and ambulance men scrambling around victims and car wreckage.
GV Hunt rounds bend
GV Jochen Mass leads John Watson through bend.
MV John Watson of Ireland in pits.
GV PAN James Hunt down straight.
GVs Jody Scheckter in pits (2 shots)
GV Cars through bend
GVs Hunt takes chequered flag. (3 shots)
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Background: Motor-racing - and outgoing world champion James Hunt of Britain, who led all the way in the last race of the 1977 grand prix series in Japan, saw his victory marred by a crash which killed a track official and a spectator after a Ferrari left the track. Hunt, who took his title on the same track last year, won the race after French driver Gilles Villeneuve of Canada crashed his car in an incident involving the Tyrrell Ford of Swedish driver Ronnie Peterson.
SYNOPSIS: The world championship, meanwhile, was known even before the cars lined up on the starting grid. Niki Lauda of Australia, the Ferrari number one driver who is leaving to join Brabham, was not racing on doctor's orders - but he had an unbeatable points lead anyway. Hunt, who took his title from Lauda on the Fuji circuit last year in a points battle all the way to the end, seemed determined to avenge his low fifth placing in this year's series by at least winning the Japanese Grand Prix, if not the actual championship.
The disaster came in the seventh lap when Villeneuve's Ferrari left the track, killing a race marshal and a spectator. It appeared that his car and Peterson's touched when coming out of a corner - but while the race was slowed down a little, James Hunt kept up his lead.
Irishman John Watson, an early favourite, did not have much luck.
But meanwhile Hunt kept going, looking for his third grand prix win of the season.
Jody Scheckter of South Africa managed to hold on to second place in the world championship points table.
The 73-lap race was held in good weather, unlike last year when Lauda withdrew in the face of heavy rain. The dry track led to some good times, like Hunt's winning average of 129.145 miles per hour (207.84 KPH). Second was Argentina's Carlos Reutemann in a Ferrari, and third was Patrick Depailler of France in a Tyrrell.