Ryan Wood  |    |  27 November 2016

Lewis Hamilton wins in Abu Dhabi but Nico Rosberg is crowned champion


Octane Photographic

Nico Rosberg has won his maiden Formula 1 World Championship after securing second place in the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi, whilst team-mate Lewis Hamilton did all he could to make the German's path to the title as difficult as possible.

Although Hamilton crossed the line first, the Briton controlled the pace of the race in the hope of backing up Rosberg into the chasing pack, but Mercedes' rivals simply weren't quick enough.

Hamilton won the race by less than half a second from Rosberg, who wowed the crowd with donuts on his slow-down lap before parking on the grid to rapturous applause.

Hamilton's tactics didn't go down well with Mercedes who urged the three-time champion to speed up on a number of occasions, but a defiant Hamilton refused, insisting Mercedes let them race.

Sebastian Vettel finished just +0.404s behind Rosberg but ran out of laps to make the move, whilst Max Verstappen ended up fourth despite running down in last place on the opening lap following a clash.

Daniel Ricciardo completed the top five, three-seconds down on his team-mate and five off Hamilton.

The race began with Hamilton and Rosberg getting good starts as Verstappen made contact with Nico Hulkenberg, spinning before rejoining in last place. He made steady progress in the first seven laps toi climb to P10.

Kevin Magnussen was the first retirement on Lap 5, quickly followed by Valtteri Bottas, confirming Force India's fourth-place finish in the standings.

The first round of stops came about on Lap 7 for the leaders, but Verstappen waited until Lap 22 to go on a one-stop strategy after his poor start, helping him to close up on the leaders come the final few laps.

That saw Verstappen emerge ahead of Rosberg who had to pass on track and did so successfully to claim second place, where he would remain until the end of the race, despite the intense pressure from behind.

Kimi Raikkonen finished seventh ahead of the two Force Indias and Felipe Massa in his final race.

Fernando Alonso completed the top ten whilst his McLaren team-mate Jenson Button would fail to finish his last race after suspension failure saw him quit on Lap 13.

Both Toro Rossos joined Button on the retirement list with a gearbox failure for Carlos Sainz and a yet unspecified problem for Daniil Kvyat.

United Arab Emirates - Race Result

Pos Driver Team Gap Points
1   Lewis HamiltonMercedes25
2   Nico RosbergMercedes0.43918
3   Sebastian VettelFerrari0.84315
4   Max VerstappenRed Bull1.68512
5   Daniel RicciardoRed Bull5.31510
6   Kimi RaikkonenFerrari18.8168
7   Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes50.1146
8   Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes58.7764
9   Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes59.4362
10   Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda59.8961
11   Romain GrosjeanHaas-Ferrari76.7770
12   Esteban GutierrezHaas-Ferrari95.1130
13   Esteban OconManor-Mercedes1 Lap0
14   Pascal WehrleinManor-Mercedes1 Lap0
15   Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari1 Lap0
16   Felipe NasrSauber-Ferrari1 Lap0
17   Jolyon PalmerRenault1 Lap0
18   Carlos SainzToro Rosso-FerrariDNF0
19   Daniil KvyatToro Rosso-FerrariDNF0
20   Jenson ButtonMcLaren-HondaDNF0
21   Valtteri BottasWilliams-MercedesDNF0
22   Kevin MagnussenRenaultDNF0

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