Yesterday’s Formula One race in Abu Dhabi brought to end the 65th Championship in the pinnacle of motor sport.
If you look at the stats nothing signals a stand out season – Mercedes winning the Constructors Championship by almost 300 points, securing every pole position except one, and only 3 different winners of the 19 calendar races – but it was in fact an exciting season, with the Drivers Championship still up for grabs going into the final race of the season.
In reality it was a one constructor, two driver race between Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg that ended with the Hamilton coming out on top to claim his second World Drivers Championship, but what a battle it was between them. We had Lewis retire in the first race in Australia, but then win the next 4 races to put him in a great position. However after a controversial qualifying session in Monaco which resulted in a did Nico or didn’t Nico hamper Lewis’s qualifying on purpose, Hamilton would only taste victory once in the next 7 races, and the title swung back in the German’s favour.
However after the Belgium GP which saw a coming together between Hamilton and Rosberg, that put the British driver out of the race, and 29 points behind in the Championship a new Lewis Hamilton emerged. He won the next 5 races, and even with Nico finishing 2nd in four of those going into the penultimate race in Brazil, Lewis held a 24 point lead. A reversal in the one-two finishing places saw a 17 gap between the two heading into the final race in Abu Dhabi. However for the first time in the sports history there was a twist as double points were being awarded for the top 10 finishing positions.
The list of possible outcomes looked like a maths equation, however none of it was needed in the end as Hamilton raced away into the first corner with a lead he would never lose, and coupled with Rosberg having electrical problems, all his fans could breathe a sigh of relief many laps from the end, as he became only the fourth Britain to win the title on more than one occasion.
There was a downside to the season though as the financial cost of running a team in F1 was highlighted towards the end of the season with British based teams Marussia and Caterham both going into administration, with the former ceasing operations before the season had finished. The issue of safety also raised it’s ugly head too, with French driver Jules Bianchi seriously injured in a crash at the Japanese GP.
This should not take away from what was a superb season of racing though, with more overtakes than we’ve seen for many years, so much wheel to wheel racing, and unpredictability. After all who could’ve predicted that the World Champion for the past 4 years Sebastian Vettel wouldn’t win a single race?
And 2015 is already shaping up nicely with a 20-race calendar already announced and big driver changes that will see amongst others the previously mentioned Vettel driving for Ferrari, and the 17 year old Max Verstappen rewriting the history books to become the youngest ever driver in F1. That’s not to mention our own Lewis Hamilton trying to retain the Driver’s Championship!