After eighteen races all over the world, the journey that began back in Australia in mid March will this weekend reach its climax with a lot to play for, thanks to double points this Sunday, it’ll now be a double points championship decider. Come Sunday afternoon we will be crowning either Lewis Hamilton or Nico Rosberg the new Formula One world champion.
For championship leader, it’s simple. A second place finish come the race on Sunday will give the Brit his second world championship, even if Nico Rosberg does go on to win the race. Hamilton is the firm favourite to wrap up the championship this weekend thanks to the seventeen point lead that looked almost impossible to build after Spa.
— MERCEDES AMG F1 (@MercedesAMGF1) November 20, 2014
Going into the weekend it looks as if the Brit’s championship show down experiences could favour him. In 2007 it was Hamilton that lost out by a single point and 2008? We all know how that ended, thankfully even with what is at stake, both men have insisted that a change of approach heading in is not on the cards meaning we look to be in for yet another classic battle between the Mercedes pair.
Nico Rosberg this weekend needs to finish at least fifth place to have any chance of the title, deep down Rosberg knows he is the underdog heading in and will need a huge chunk of luck to come his way. The image below simplifies matters.
Whilst Daniel Ricciardo has secured a hugely impressive third place in this seasons championship, the fight for fourth could go either way. Just three points separate Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso and Williams’ Valtteri Bottas.
Whilst the fight in the driver’s championship looks tense, third place in the constructors also will go down to the wire. The fight to finish behind Mercedes, who wrapped up the championship in Russia, and Red Bull who are locked into second place, Williams currently occupy third and could be on for their best finish in over ten years, and with double points up for grabs Ferrari are in with a chance of taking the position.
As always the final race of the season is a time for goodbyes. The news of Fernando Alonso leaving Ferrari after five seasons was confirmed today, making way for Sebastian Vettel to join Kimi Raikkonen on a three year deal as of 2015. Alonso’s preferred destination? McLaren.
With Alonso on his way to McLaren, unfortunately for the British fans this looks to be Jenson Button’s last weekend, although the team have not made the news official it only seems a matter of time until Alonso’s return to the team in which he last raced for in 2007 is confirmed.
Daniil Kvyat, Esteban Gutierrez and Adrian Sutil will be driving for their respected teams for the final time this weekend. Next season Kvyat moves to Red Bull whilst the Sauber pairing of Gutierrez and Sutil must seek drives elsewhere as the team opts for Marcus Ericsson and Felipe Nasr from next season.
Unlike USA and Brazil, this weekend will see Caterham on the grid. The team have raised enough money to race this weekend in Abu Dhabi. Whether or not the outfit will be around in 2015 is unclear however they do have an entry. Kamui Kobayashi will take his place back in the car alongside British hopeful Will Stevens.
Who do you think will leave Abu Dhabi this Sunday as the new world champion? Leave your comments below.