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Old 28th November 2016, 10:02   #46
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Default Post-Race Summary of the Title Decider

Post-Race Summary of the Title Decider

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Vettel's long middle stint allowed a charging final stint on the super-soft.
Verstappen's single-stopper allowed him a great recovery after a spin in lap 1.

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This was how the top 4 appeared across the finish line - all four separated by 1.7 seconds, top 3 by 0.8 seconds

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These fireworks couldn't hold a candle to the on-track entertainment that Verstappen and Vettel provided...
... and the radio calls among Mercedes!

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The best donuts in life are made of rubber

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You don't need Red Bull to give you wings

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Now there are two father-son WDC champions: Damon Hill became champion in 1996
to join father Graham Hill's championships in 1962 & 1968.
Interestingly, the gap between father and son winning their first championships
is 34 years in both cases.

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Keke Rosberg is the undisputed moustache champion.
Oh, he also won the WDC in 1982.


Hamilton's Statements
Vettel's radio outburst at Mexico has paled into insignificance compared to various statements that Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton made over the weekend, before and after the title deciding race. While his on-track actions were perfectly legal and smart - if not appreciated by everyone - some of his statements might ruffle the Wolff's feathers.

It all started off positively pre-race and on the podium...
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A post-qualifying comment from Hamilton

... but didn't take long for a darker tone to emerge in the post-race press conference:
Quote:
Q: How much was [it] annoying [you] the box asking you to improve your pace and aren’t you afraid that the relationship with the team now is a little bit more cold?
LH: Not really. I don’t know why they didn’t just let us just race. There was never a moment where I felt I was going to lose the race. It’s a shame that they wouldn’t but it’s quite clear their through process and yeah I mean I don’t really have much to say.

Q: To follow up on that, do you find it an inconvenience… do you find it a bit annoying that you receive instructions like that a few laps from the end when you’re under intense pressure in a title race? Could you do without that?
LH: ... I’m in a position where I’ve obviously had a lot of points lost during the season so for me, I’m out there fighting and I generally never try to do anything to harm the team or the brand or anything like that. But we’ve won the Constructors’ Championship so it was down to me and Nico today. And however, they still felt they needed to make comments and so… well, y’know, we’ll discuss it afterwards as we always do as a team and pull back in.
... and later in the press-pen as well:
Quote:
“I don’t think I did anything dangerous today, or unfair,” Hamilton said. “We’re fighting for a world championship, I was in the lead of the race, so I control the pace. That’s the rules.

“For me I’m in the position where I’ve had a lot of points lost during the season so I’m out there fighting, and I generally never try to do anything to harm the team. But we had already won the constructors' championship so today it was down to me and Nico, and the team still felt they needed to interfere.

“I don’t know why they didn’t just let us race. I knew being in the lead I was losing the championship, and there was never a moment I felt I was going to lose the race. I don’t really have much to say to them to be honest. There was never a moment I felt I was at risk.”

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff clarified that despite pre-race statements from Mercedes that they would allow their drivers to race...
Quote:
Wolff also insisted Mercedes only interfered in their drivers' title battle by issuing Hamilton with instructions to speed up as they feared they would lose race victory to a charging Sebastian Vettel.

Another theme emerged in later interviews, with Sky F1:
Quote:
"There was no point sitting up front, winning the GP and having him come second. I had to try. With all the issues I had through the year, it left me in the position I am in now"

"I hope the team provides me with reliability the way they do with the other car"
As well as in other quotes to the media, captured on F1 Fanatic:
Quote:
However Hamilton is optimistic he will have a chance to win further titles in the future. “Providing in following years we’re in equal cars there’s more championships to be won,” he said.

Asked if he felt the best driver had won this year Hamilton added: “I don’t agree with that necessarily. I’ll leave that to your imagination.”
Even prior to the race, in a press interview with the Telegraph, Hamilton stated his opinion of viewing Rosberg as a champion, as well as dropping hints about various secrets this year:
Quote:
“Maybe I ought to keep this private, but I feel a certain way in my heart about how I have performed. If he is labelled the world champion, it doesn’t necessarily mean that is the way it is labelled in my heart.”

“I get excited about the thought that, one day, I can talk about this year. There are so many thoughts I have on my mind, which I can’t share with you just yet.”

Reports also emerged that after the crash at the Spanish GP, Hamilton threatened to sit out the rest of the season as a form of protest against the team's response, reports that Hamilton cryptically responded to with a "That is all private stuff that is in the past".


Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix-mercedes-teamwork.jpg
"Many hands make light work"
A nice bit of art from Mercedes that show it is teamwork behind every title

Toto Wolff told Sky F1 that he was in two minds about Hamilton's driving tactics:
Quote:
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is undecided on Lewis Hamilton's "backing up" tactics in the Abu Dhabi GP after the Briton attempted to reverse Nico Rosberg out of a title-winning position.

"I'm in two minds at that stage," he said when recounting the tense closing laps. "The guy who is responsible for that company and the structure we have put in place, and the team that we have put in place and its values, it's pretty clear - it can't make a difference whether it's the first or the last race."

"The other side, me the racer, says maybe I would have done the same. He had two choices - disappear in the distance and show that he's the quickest guy on the planet today and win the race, irrespective of what's happening in the back. Or decide the other way and bunch them up behind him.

"So this is why it's not clear cut, we have to calm down. There is so much going on in the background which plays a role in how we are thinking and this is why I don't want to express an opinion before I've actually made up my mind for myself."
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Old 28th November 2016, 10:30   #47
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Originally Posted by mayankk View Post
Rosberg's consistency pays off. A new champion!!
Gutted about Button, though.





Sorry, but Lewis was not trying to DENY Nico a championship. He was trying to WIN his own. It is still better than crashing into your rival, I believe.
This is a standard tactic to back your rival into traffic. If you find this "unsportsman like", then you only have to look at seasons from the days of senna, hill and schumacher to see how timid that is compared to what used to happen.
How can the suspension break for riding an innocent looking kerb. McLaren should certainly look at making stronger cars given the next year ones will be quite structurally different.
I will not blame Lewis for his style of driving yesterday. Do you expect him to drive fast and disappear and Nico tuts his way across the race and gets the WDC. Wake up. The bad starts have definitely played it's part but it is also the un-reliability of the Mercs which has put him here. Yesterday it was the driver's championship in question. Mercedes already has the constructors and they had no business intervening the way they did yesterday. McLaren and even Red Bull handled conflicts better with star drivers.
Put Nico in inferior machinery and you will see the boy separated from men.
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Old 28th November 2016, 10:42   #48
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
Nico should have not expected Mercedes to dictate team orders in my opinion. That really gets Lewis's goat!
I dont really think Nico did that. Atleast whenever I heard I could not see Nico asking the team to talk to Lewis. What I heard though was him asking "how good are we" many times!
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Old 28th November 2016, 10:54   #49
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

While I didn't enjoy seeing the slow-driving tactic Hamilton used, it was his only shot left at the drivers' title, given both Mercedes made a good getaway and a clean race thus far.

He was smart to withhold the tactic until after the pit stops were complete to prevent the pit wall from giving Rosberg the undercut, and smart about the way he executed it - slow in places where overtaking was hard and opening the gap up around the DRS detection points. He never drove inconsistently/dangerously, as a result of which his driving was perfectly legal. I think only a few drivers on the grid can pull off such defensive manoeuvers with such aplomb (Alonso is one who comes to mind).

Kudos to Rosberg for his mental fortitude - he overtook Verstappen cleanly when it mattered, and held off Vettel quite capably to come in second. I also wouldn't laugh at Rosberg's request to the pit wall asking for a swap in places (which would have been a naïve request), because I viewed that as a polite way of him asking the pit wall to ask Hamilton to get moving.

The late charge by Vettel after extending his middle stint was also exciting to watch. Once he caught Rosberg, I appreciate his gentlemanly attitude there - he could have easily attempted an aggressive move or banzai dive - fully knowing that Rosberg would safely give up his second place - but refrained from doing so, and looked only for clean overtakes.

Behind him, Verstappen also impressed with his one-stopper and driving - although banging Hülkenberg's side pod wasn't his greatest moment.

Alonso continues to impress by bringing his car into positions above where it deserves to be. At this rate, McLaren will be effortless in challenging and beating Force India and Williams in 2017, particularly since those two teams have far smaller war chests.

I also appreciate Hamilton's slow driving for enlivening what would have otherwise turned out to be a processional and boring race - if you look at the top 10 finishers, they were the top 10 qualifiers, with a few positions shuffled around. Going further down the order, the same pattern is repeated.

Among the top order, there was a lot of clean and respectful racing, although at the tail end, there was quite some wheel-banging - particularly among the Manor cars!


Note to all readers: I hope you enjoyed these race reports, and had as much fun reading them as I did compiling them!

Last edited by arunphilip : 28th November 2016 at 11:01.
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Old 28th November 2016, 10:54   #50
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

So that brings an end to the 2016 season. Even Rosberg could become a champion, thats what F1 has become

Looking forward to next season!
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Old 28th November 2016, 11:28   #51
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Congratulations to Nico! Did what was required to win. Nice to have a new champion.

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Originally Posted by Makin Rulesz View Post

It's shame on Mercedes to give orders when there were multiple statements from them prior to the race about letting the drivers race freely on track.
I found that a bit odd too, but as Toto said they only intervened when Vettel and Max got really close, and the risk to the win came into the picture.

Quote:
Originally Posted by khoj View Post
The shame is on Lewis Hamilton as he tried to back Nico towards the Redbull & Ferrari that were behind.

The orders to him were to increase the pace so as not to allow either Verstappen or Vettel to get close & attempt to pass Nico. Not only did Lewis not do that but clearly told the team that "he was losing the championship and he did not care if he lost the race". Surely Lewis fans will argue that he was trying to win the championship by engineering a strategy to ensure that Nico did not get on the podium but then one wins F1 championships by going fast and not by devious means.

As I have always maintained LH may be a good driver but he is a poor sportsman and certainly no champion.
Thing is that all the drivers on the grid would have done the same with the Championship on the line. Other champions have crashed into title contenders to secure the WDC if you recall. Backing the field up was not devious in my book, just plain logic. Just as one can argue, Nico should not have asked Mercedes to intervene, but, again, you have to use all the pressure tactics you can. Afterall, top drivers are poor losers!

Now the long wait for 2017.

Last edited by Hatari : 28th November 2016 at 11:41.
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Old 28th November 2016, 11:41   #52
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Originally Posted by anachronix View Post
So that brings an end to the 2016 season. Even Rosberg could become a champion, thats what F1 has become

Looking forward to next season!
And that too my beating what most widely believe the most talented driver in F1 today.
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Old 28th November 2016, 14:17   #53
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Super race! Lewis will kill to win, and there's nothing wrong with that in my opinion. The killer instinct is what separates the best from the rest.

Although I was supporting Rosberg, I still believe he had the advantage because of the car. If you put 22 equal cars on the grid, in all likelihood the likes of Vettel, Alonso etc will be ahead of him.
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Old 28th November 2016, 15:14   #54
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

@arunphilip: Thanks for the excellent compilation of the race.
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Old 28th November 2016, 15:46   #55
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

So there were rumors about Mercedes putting out a fine, suspension, or even sack Lewis.
Now Wolff has confirmed the whatever will happen, will be internal. So, a fine, then.
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Old 28th November 2016, 15:46   #56
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I'm just not able to understand the hatred towards Nico Rosberg in the World Wide Web. Is it because he competes against Lewis Hamilton, the demi-God for many of his fans?

Come on, let's give Nico credits for what he accomplished. He didn't put a foot wrong all season and delivered what he needed to every time he had to.

Yes, he had the more reliable car between the two of them in 2016 but he also didn't throw away as many as 4 race starts from front row grid positions. He qualified first or second every race and didn't nudge the barriers like Lewis did in Baku. He was rightly caught and penalized every time he made a mistake on track including the controversial one for "radio communication" in Silverstone. On the contrary, many drivers including Lewis weren't penalized for worse actions on track. He played the team game when he was asked to in Monaco, where he was struggling for pace and Lewis couldn't overtake because of the nature of the track.

In a season that lasted a record 21 races, it is this sort of consistency that will see you through than having a few blistering races and some off-days at work. And, if reliability hasn't been an underlying factor in F1, Kimi would be a multiple world champion and Lewis himself wouldn't have won in 2008.

Here's looking forward to an improved 2017 season, hopefully with the Red Bulls and the Ferraris in the mix. If McLaren could also join the party, that would be a fabulous treat for us F1 fans!
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Old 28th November 2016, 15:48   #57
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Toto Wolff has revealed that Lewis Hamilton could have disciplinary action after disobeying team orders in Sunday's title decider in Abu Dhabi.

http://www.planetf1.com/news/mercede...ail-28-11-2016
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Old 28th November 2016, 16:42   #58
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Originally Posted by arvi86 View Post
I'm just not able to understand the hatred towards Nico Rosberg in the World Wide Web. Is it because he competes against Lewis Hamilton, the demi-God for many of his fans?
Fans worship talent (god gifted) more than they worship hard-work (self acquired). LH is considered the most talented driver on the grid, & Nico beat him, with a sum of all of his talent, hard word (not saying that LH doesn't work hard) & no doubt some luck. And he did that while obeying team orders (in Monaco).
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Old 28th November 2016, 17:26   #59
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Nico beat him, with a sum of all of his talent, hard word (not saying that LH doesn't work hard) & no doubt some luck. And he did that while obeying team orders (in Monaco).
That's precisely why I'm saying he needs to be appreciated rather than being foul-mouthed all across the internet. BBC has an article titled "Does Nico deserve the 2016 world title?" I mean, come on, where were these guys when the championship went from Felipe Massa to Lewis Hamilton in a span of few corners in 2008, not because of something Lewis did but because of something Timo couldn't. BBC may be supporting their countryman but for such a credible site to even ask this question on Nico's 2016 title is unnecessary, I think.

Last edited by arvi86 : 28th November 2016 at 17:29.
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Old 28th November 2016, 17:26   #60
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Default Re: Formula 1 : 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

The race was awesome. Lewis tactics can be termed sneaky or clever racing. He slowed down so Nico would have Vettel on his tail to fend off and if Vettel overtook him higher chances of Hamilton grabbing the championship. Vettel was a gentleman. He could have troubled Nico by diving in one of the turns as Nico had everything to lose.

Looks like he will get internal disciplinary action from Mercedes for that strategy he pulled.

Good fun race to end the championship.
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