Nico Rosberg clinched his maiden Formula 1 world championship by holding off Sebastian Vettel to finish second in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as rival Lewis Hamilton won the race.
Rosberg only had to finish third to clinch the championship, as the pair entered their second title showdown in three seasons.
In winning the title, he matched his father Keke’s feat 34 years ago. Hamilton tried all he could in the closing stages to back Rosberg up into the chasing Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull of Max Verstappen – who made a remarkable comeback from a first-corner spin – but to no avail. In their final F1 races, Williams’s Felipe Massa and McLaren’s Jenson Button suffered contrasting fortunes.
Massa finished in the points in ninth, Button was forced out with a suspension failure after he hit a kerb too hard.
Requiring a podium finish to secure his first F1 drivers’ title, Rosberg finished Sunday’s race in second place to clinch the crown ahead of Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton, the race victor, by five points.
“That was definitely not the most enjoyable race I’ve ever had,” said a relieved Rosberg. “Those laps were really not very enjoyable. I’m glad it’s over, and I am ecstatic.”
|4||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||TAG||1.685|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull||TAG||5.315|
|7||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India||Mercedes||50.114|
|8||Sergio Perez||Force India||Mercedes||58.776|
|13||Esteban Ocon||Manor||Mercedes||1 lap|
|14||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor||Mercedes||1 lap|
|15||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber||Ferrari||1 lap|
|16||Felipe Nasr||Sauber||Ferrari||1 lap|
|17||Jolyon Palmer||Renault||Renault||1 lap|
|Carlos Sainz Jr.||Toro Rosso||Ferrari|
|Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso||Ferrari|