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F1| Abu Dhabi GP | Max Verstappen wins a drama induced last race of the season and becomes the 2021 F1 champion

In the last chaotic race of the 2021 season, Max Verstappen wins the Abu Dhabi GP ahead of his championship rival Lewis Hamilton and Carlos Sainz Jr. 

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F1| Abu Dhabi GP | Max Verstappen wins a drama induced last race of the season and becomes the 2021 F1 champion
Fuente imagen: Hasan Bratic for Motorlat.com

After the drama induced last race, the winner of the final round of the F1 2021 season is Max Verstappen, followed by Lewis Hamilton and Carlos Sainz Jr. That means that Max Verstappen will be crowned the 2021 season’s champion, the first Dutch F1 champion ever. 

The top 10 of the race were: Tsunoda, Gasly, Bottas, Norris, Alonso, Ocon and Leclerc. 

This Sunday is all that we’ve been waiting for. The last race of the 2021 season, and the last race, that will decide who will be crowned the F1 World Champion after this spectacular 22 races - Lewis Hamilton, or Max Verstappen? Who will take the prize and walk away as the winner, and who will have to come in to terms with the defeat, after going head to head for a big part of this year? There is definitely a lot of tension, a lot of emotions and a lot of questions that will be all resolved after the 2 hours of the race are done. 

Before the showtime, the first information we received earlier that day was that due to a positive COVID-19 test, the Haas driver Nikita Mazepin will have to sit out the Abu Dhabi GP. Because of the sporting regulations, that meant that only one Haas car will participate in the race that evening. 

The starting grid was: Verstappen, Hamilton, Norris, Perez, Sainz, Bottas, Leclerc, Tsunoda, Ocon, Ricciardo, Alonso, Gasly, Stroll, Giovinazzi, Vettel, Latifi, Russell, Raikkonen and Schumacher. 

For the last time this season: “it’s lights out and away we go!” And immediately Hamilton got ahead of Verstappen. Norris had to save himself by going outside the track, but was able to rejoin the track. On the first lap already we had a small contact between Lewis and Max, but Lewis gained a position on Verstappen by going out of the track. FIA decided no investigation was necessary, which is definitely another controversial and inconsistent decision by the sporting organisation. Around 6th lap Leclerc began his hunt on Norris, trying to catch him asap. Before that we had a little battle between teammates, namely Vettel and Stroll, and it was the German that was able to overtake. 

8 laps in and the top 10 was: Hamilton, Verstappen, Perez, Sainz, Norris, Leclerc, Tsunoda, Bottas, Ocon and Ricciardo. From P4 till P8 there was a little bit of the train, so it will be interesting to see if there will be any proper action going on there. Between lap 8 and lap 13 not much has happened, as the track in Abu Dhabi is not a place where we can expect a lot of action. On that lap it was also the opening of the pit window for the drivers that began the race on softs. Max Verstappen pitted at lap 14, and he pitted from softs to hards. Leclerc had an outing off the track, and was overtaken by Tsunoda, who was able to keep the position ahead. Lap 15 was when Lewis went to pit, and he pitted from mediums to hards. At that moment, it was Perez who was leading the race. Verstappen started to gain positions on track, first with Norris then with Sainz. 

Between the laps 20-23 we’ve had an incredible battle between Perez on P1 and Hamilton on P2, after Perez was told to hold Lewis back. His aggressive yet incredibly impressive driving was able to slow Hamilton down 7s in two laps, that helped Verstappen to catch them and be able to engage with chasing Hamilton again. That was some proper skill shown by the Mexican. 

Lap 27 was definitely not what ANY of us wanted to see - Kimi Raikkonen had to retire from his last race in Formula 1 after issues with breaks. This lap was also the end of race for Russell, who had his last race at Williams before going to Mercedes from 2022. 

On lap 31st Bottas finally visited the pits to change his tyres. At that point of the race, it was: Hamilton, Verstappen, Perez, Alonso, Gasly, Sainz, Norris, Leclerc and Bottas on P10. After his pitstop Bottas started his chase of Leclerc, but for a few laps he was greatly unsuccessful in catching the red car. At lap 35 the Finn was finally able to overtake the Monegasque. 

Lap 36 seen another car retire, and it was the second car of Alfa Romeo, with Giovinazzi on board, who’s another driver that is saying goodbye to F1 after this race. Interestingly enough, it took quite some time for the VSC to be signalled. With the VSC Red Bull pitted both Verstappen and Perez, but Mercedes kept both of their drivers on track, 

20 laps till the end of the race, but the game is still on. 

There was some tangling going on between Fernando Alonso and Yuki Tsunoda, but the drivers were able to avoid contact. Alonso then got into a fight with Gasly, who was able to pass the Spaniard. It seems the Alpha Tauri’s to a winning hand on the Alpine’s this race. 

The last 15 laps have been extremely stressful. Hamilton found himself stuck in traffic and help back by the back markers, but at the same time Verstappen wasn’t catching him up fast enough to be able to give us a dramatic ending. Unless Lewis’ tyres give up, it seems like almost impossible task for Verstappen to overtake Hamilton. Norris was forced to pit as he had a slow puncture, which is another unlucky moment for the Brit. 

Lap 53 and we’ve got Latifi in the wall, and a safety car. Verstappen got into pits again to change his tyres. Hamilton stayed on track. This race is getting more and more intense with every lap. Perez had to retire his car just 3 laps before the end of the race, which is definitely a disappointing end of his great performance today. 

But so it happened, the absolute chaos commenced - at first there was information that the lapped cars are not allowed to overtake, that sparked immediately a complaint from Red Bull. But then, just before the last lap, 5 cars were allowed by FIA to overtake, so just before the start of the last lap Verstappen found himself side by side with Hamilton. With the green light they immediately fought, and eventually, after a couple of corners - it was Verstappen who found himself first. 

After the drama induced, absolutely insane 2021 season, the winner of not only the GP in Abu Dhabi but the F1 World Championship title is MAX EMILLIAN VERSTAPPEN, ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Carlos Sainz Jr. 


Here is the final classification after Abu Dhabi GP: 

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