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Verstappen topped 2021 F1 champion after last-lap move on Hamilton | Autocar India

Written by Gulati

Printed On Dec 12, 2021 09:48:00 PM

Max Verstappen defeated Lewis Hamilton in what was a nail-biting end to the 2021 F1 season.

Max Verstappen has claimed his maiden F1 title after overtaking Lewis Hamilton on the final lap of the thrilling Abu Dhabi GP. The Purple Bull Racing driver has additionally made historical past within the course of – turning into F1’s first-ever Dutch champion.

With a number of twists and turns, the Abu Dhabi GP served up a finale that surpassed what even the most effective script writers may have churned out. Verstappen versus Hamilton has been a battle of titans all season lengthy. And reasonably fittingly, the title decider got here down to at least one ultimate lap duel between the 2 after a late Security Automobile.

  • Verstappen turns into first ever Dutch F1 champion
  • Mercedes win constructors’ title
  • FIA dismisses each Mercedes protests

Controversial Abu Dhabi GP

Stewards courted controversy from the opening lap itself. Hamilton jumped Verstappen at the beginning, however the Purple Bull driver shot again, nudging Hamilton off monitor. Hamilton re-joined the monitor to maintain the lead, prompting Verstappen to state that he ought to give the place bacl. Nevertheless, stewards determined that no investigation was obligatory.

Fervent crew play from Sergio Perez helped his teammate shut the hole to Hamilton, however the Mercedes seemed to be the superior automotive when it got here to outright tempo. Hamilton was steadily pulling away on the entrance, however a digital security automotive handed Verstappen his first shot to play with technique.

Whereas Mercedes opted to depart Hamilton out, Purple Bull pitted Verstappen. With 20 laps to go, Verstappen needed to overcome a virtually 17-second deficit. However he was armed with brisker tyres, whereas Hamilton must nurse his onerous tyres for near 45 laps.

Security Automobile units stage for thrilling finale

Verstappen nonetheless had a 11-second hole to Hamilton with 10 laps to go. Simply when it appeared like Hamilton had one hand on the trophy, Nicholas Latifi crashed with six laps to go, bringing out the Security Automobile.

Mercedes didn’t need to lose monitor place and determined to depart Hamilton out. Verstappen, alternatively, had nothing to lose and pitted as soon as once more for recent softs. Race director Michael Masi initially said that lapped drivers gained’t be allowed to overhaul the Security Automobile, to depart sufficient time for one final lap dash. The choice would favour Hamilton since there have been 5 lapped drivers between him and Verstappen. Nevertheless, Masi reversed the decision forward of the ultimate lap, permitting the 5 drivers to unlap themselves.

Verstappen wins F1 title

Verstappen made full use of his new tyres to move Hamilton into Flip 5, denying the Briton a document eighth title. It was additionally a becoming sendoff for Purple Bull’s engine accomplice Honda. From subsequent 12 months, Purple Bull will take over the Japanese agency’s F1 engine operations.

“It’s simply insane. I imply, my objective once I was little was after all to turn into a Formulation 1 driver and also you hope for wins, to be on the rostrum. Once they play the nationwide anthem you sooner or later hope they play yours after which once you stand right here and so they inform you [that] you might be world champion it’s one thing unimaginable and particular,” mentioned an emotional Verstappen.

The Dutch driver additionally counseled his title rival: “Lewis is a tremendous driver, a tremendous competitor, he actually made it actually onerous for us and all people likes to see that. After all the 2 groups run in opposition to one another and we now have robust instances however I believe that’s a part of the game, it’s emotion, everybody needs to win. It may have gone both approach right now however for positive subsequent 12 months we’ll attempt once more, come again, and hopefully do it once more.”

In what was some comfort, Mercedes sealed the constructors’ title for a document eighth consecutive 12 months. The crew had lodged formal protests over the ultimate end result, citing a breach of two articles within the Sporting Rules. Nevertheless, the FIA has since dismissed each protests. 

Raikkonen retires from ultimate F1 race

Carlos Sainz took the ultimate podium spot forward of Yuki Tsunoda and Pierre Gasly. Valtteri Bottas completed his final race with Mercedes in sixth place, adopted by Lando Norris, Fernando Alonso, Esteban Ocon and Charles Leclerc.

Sadly for Kimi Raikkonen, he needed to retire from his ultimate F1 race attributable to a brake failure. The ‘Iceman’ calls time on an illustrious F1 profession spanning 20 years.

2021 Abu Dhabi GP outcomes

2021 Abu Dhabi GP outcomes
Pos Driver Staff
1 Max Verstappen Purple Bull Racing
2 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes
3 Carlos Sainz Ferrari
4 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri
5 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri
6 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes
7 Lando Norris McLaren
8 Fernando Alonso Alpine
9 Esteban Ocon Alpine
10 Charles Leclerc Ferrari
11 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin
12 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren
13 Lance Stroll Aston Martin
14 Mick Schumacher Haas
15 Sergio Perez Purple Bull Racing
NC Nicholas Latifi Williams
NC Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo
NC George Russell Williams
NC Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo

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Gulati