Home Sport Verstappen crowned world champion after dramatic win in Abu Dhabi

Verstappen crowned world champion after dramatic win in Abu Dhabi

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FILE PHOTO: Formula One F1 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas, Austin, Texas, U.S. – October 24, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton in action at the start of the race REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was crowned Formula One world champion on Sunday when he beat Lewis Hamilton in the final lap in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

ABU DHABI – Max Verstappen became the first Dutchman ever to win the Formula One world championship title when he won a dramatic season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Sunday.

The Red Bull driver notched up a 10th victory of the season when he took advantage of a second safety car to overtake seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton on the final lap after Nicholas Latifi crashed.

Verstappen and Hamilton, who went into the race level on points, went wheel to wheel to the chequered flag with the Dutchman edging the race.

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Hamilton, who had won the three previous races, made the perfect start when he overtook Verstappen before the first corner.

The two then tangled on the first lap with Verstappen overtaking and forcing Hamilton wide off the track but the Mercedes driver cut across and rejoined the race in the lead.

He slowed to give back time but the stewards decided not to investigate the incident.

Hamilton built up a lead which was then threatened when Red Bull took advantage of a virtual safety car on lap 36 of 58 to switch to a new set of hard tyres.

Hamilton stayed out and saw the Dutchman erode his lead with every lap. Another safety car on lap 54 enabled Verstappen to pit again and switch to soft tyres.

When the safety car came off, just one dramatic lap remained and the two began it neck and neck.

But the fresh tyres paid off for the 24-year-old Verstappen who surged through to win the race and the title to roars from the stands at the Yas Marina stands.

AFP

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