British Grand Prix driver and Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton is in no mood to pass his world championship crown to teammate Nico Rosberg. At present, Hamilton sits just 12 points behind Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg going into the final formula 1 race of the season. In a season that has once again seen Mercedes dominate only Hamilton or Rosberg can win the f1 championship. No matter the outcome of this years Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Mercedes will have the top two F1 drivers for the third year in a row.
Much to Nico Rosberg’s dismay Hamilton has beaten him to the drivers championship in each of the last two-years. As Hamilton bids for his third straight world championship, Rosberg sits in the dominant position going into the final race. For Rosberg, a podium finish means he will win his first world championship and relegate Hamilton to the number two slot. Hamilton needs to win the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and hope that Rosberg doesn’t finish any higher than fourth. It all adds up to an incredibly exciting Grand Prix for Formula 1 fans.
Just two weeks ago, the 2016 F1 championship looked to be beyond Hamilton, but Lewis produced a sublime performance, in the Brazilian rain, to win the race. As a result he closed the gap on Rosberg and took the 2016 Championship into the most exciting F1 climax for years. How Hamilton would love a wet race to finish the 2016 season, but with the race in the desert state of Abu Dhabi there isn’t much chance of that.
As reported by the BBC, the final weekend of the 2016 F1 season didn’t begin well for Hamilton. In the practice sessions for the Grand Prix Hamilton was only fourth fastest. The good news for Hamilton was that Rosberg was just behind him in fifth. Today, the final qualifying rounds saw Hamilton keep a slender advantage over Rosberg in the first two rounds.
The Daily Mail reported that in the final qualifying round Hamilton pulled out a superb final lap to finish ahead of Rosberg. He will start tomorrows race in pole position.
The bad news for Hamilton is that, chief rival and teammate, Nico Rosberg did exactly what he needed to do by finishing second in qualifying. The German driver will start second and if he can maintain that position tomorrow he will win the F1 Championship for the first time.
Pundits are suggesting that Hamilton’s best chance will be to lead from the front but push Rosberg into the pack of slower drivers. If Hamilton can keep the much slower Ferraris and Red Bulls of Daniel Ricciardo, Kimi Raikkonen, Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen on his tail, then Rosberg could easily get stuck in traffic. If that happens the Hamilton could still snatch the F1 crown from Rosberg’s outstretched hands.
Worryingly for Hamilton, the Ferraris and Red Bulls are much slower than the Mercedes, their laps times are a full half-second a lap slower. This suggests that Abu Dhabi could prove to be another processional Grand Prix for a Mercedes team who tied up the constructors championship months ago.
As the F1 season comes to a climax in Abu Dhabi it would be assumed that Rosberg and Hamilton will take the first two positions, unless one of them makes a mistake and gets trapped in the field. Both Hamilton and Rosberg have won nine races this year so the F1 title could easily be decided by a mistake. The Sun reported that Hamilton is trying to force that mistake by increasing the pressure on Rosberg. The reigning F1 champion stated that he will still be “number one” even if Rosberg takes the crown.
“I should keep this private but in my heart, I will feel that with how I have performed this season, if he is labelled the world champion, it doesn’t necessarily mean that to me.”
“You look at the world champions and you hope they are the best in all areas all year long but in my heart, I will feel in terms of how I have performed, with my pace and my ability. He could be champion but for me, I will know for me, and it will be a lot easier to move forward.”
Whatever the outcome of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, F1 fans will be looking forward to an exciting climax to the 2016 F1 drivers championship.
[Featured image by Andre Penner/AP]