BREAKING: Mercedes to appeal Verstappen’s Abu Dhabi F1 win
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Mercedes are contesting the dramatic safety car procedure that allowed one final opportunity for Verstappen to overtake Hamilton to clinch the world championship.
Verstappen took advantage of a safety car after Nicholas Latifi crashed, with the race director instructing only certain “lapped” cars to go past Hamilton. It resulted in competitive race conditions for the two title contenders to battle it out under a green light for one final lap.
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.
Until then, Hamilton had been coasting, his eighth world title seemingly in the bag, but Red Bull then received an unlikely “miracle” after Latifi crashed.
It allowed Red Bull to enforce a pit stop for Verstappen, who put on fresh tyres, while Hamilton didn’t pit as Mercedes didn’t want him to lose pole position if the race ended under the safety car.
Although Red Bull and Verstappen celebrated the Dutch driver’s maiden title, Mercedes have reportedly lodged an appeal against the result.
Dramatic scenes as Mercedes lodge two appeals
“Mercedes have protested ‘against the classification established at the end of the Competition’, relating to alleged breaches of Articles 48.8 and 48.12 of the FIA Sporting Regulations,” Formula One tweeted.
When racing resumed for the 58th and closing lap Verstappen barged past Hamilton to take the chequered flag and the title.
FORMULA 1 ETIHAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX 2021 – RACE RESULT
|1||33||Max Verstappen||RED BULL RACING HONDA||58||1:30:17.345||26|
|4||22||Yuki Tsunoda||ALPHATAURI HONDA||58||+5.692s||12|
|5||10||Pierre Gasly||ALPHATAURI HONDA||58||+6.531s||10|
|7||4||Lando Norris||MCLAREN MERCEDES||58||+59.200s||6|
|8||14||Fernando Alonso||ALPINE RENAULT||58||+61.708s||4|
|9||31||Esteban Ocon||ALPINE RENAULT||58||+64.026s||2|
|11||5||Sebastian Vettel||ASTON MARTIN MERCEDES||58||+67.527s|
|12||3||Daniel Ricciardo||MCLAREN MERCEDES||57||+1 lap|
|13||18||Lance Stroll||ASTON MARTIN MERCEDES||57||+1 lap|
|14||47||Mick Schumacher||HAAS FERRARI||57||+1 lap|
|15||11||Sergio Perez||RED BULL RACING HONDA||55||DNF|
|NC||6||Nicholas Latifi||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||50||DNF|
|NC||99||Antonio Giovinazzi||ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI||33||DNF|
|NC||63||George Russell||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||26||DNF|
|NC||7||Kimi Räikkönen||ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI||25||DNF|
Max Verstappen wins WDC