The curtain will close on the 2018 Formula One season at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this weekend.
Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes have already wrapped up the drivers’ and construction championship crowns but there is still plenty to race for at the picturesque Yas Marina Circuit.
Third place in the drivers’ standings is still up for grabs with a three-way tussle between Kimi Raikkonen, Valteri Bottas and Max Verstappen.
Verstappen was at the centre of a controversial clash with Esteban Ocon after they tangled in Brazil last time out, and their rivalry will also provided an interesting sub-plot to the season finale.
Although his fifth championship triumph is already in the books, British star Hamilton will no doubt be determined to put the icing on the cake with an 11th win of the campaign. Achieving that feat would see him match the best season of his career in terms of race wins, achieved on his way to his 2014 title.
The race will also mark the end of an era as Spaniard Fernando Alonso takes to the grid for his final Formula One race after a glittering, 17-year career at the highest level.
When is the race?
The race is scheduled to start at 1.10pm (GMT) on Sunday, November 25 with the action expected to finish around two hours later.
Qualifying will take place at 1pm on Saturday, with cars first taking to the track for practice on Friday morning (9am).
Where is the race taking place?
The season finale takes place in Abu Dhabi at the glistening Yas Marina Circuit. The marina-based development was opened in 2009 after being constructed at a cost of £800m and is the second Formula One track in the Middle East.
Is the race on TV?
The race is being shown on both Channel 4 and Sky Sports F1 in the UK. Channel 4 will provide live build-up starting at 12pm on Sunday with coverage ending at 4.35pm. They will also show qualifying live at 11:55am on Saturday.
Sky Sports will extensively cover all of the action across the weekend, with live raceway coverage beginning at 11:30am on Sunday.
Can you live stream the race?
Sky Sports subscribers in the UK can stream the action on SkyGo, whilst the race will also be available to stream via Channel 4’s official website and NowTV.
What’s still up for grabs?
The main storyline will be the battle for third place in the drivers’ standings, with three names still right in the mix. Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen is in the driving seat with a 14-point lead from Finnish compatriot Valtteri Bottas, and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen a further three behind.
The next best battle in the drivers’ championship comes in the battle for the final three top 10 places. Sergio Perez (58 points), Kevin Magnussen (55 points) and Fernando Alonso (50 points) currently fill spots 8th to 10th. Esteban Ocon (49 points) is on a charge, however, and Carlos Sainz Jr (45 points) could yet sneak into the top 10 with a strong race on Sunday.
In the constructors’ championship, Mercedes secured their fifth crown in Brazil, with Ferrari and Red Bull securing second and third place respectively. Fourth spot is yet to be confirmed, but Renault don’t have much to do to secure that place with a 24-point advantage over Haas.
To win outright
Sebastian Vettel 6/4
Lewis Hamilton 5/2
Valtteri Bottas 4/1
Max Verstappen 13/2
Kimi Raikkonen 11/1
Daniel Ricciardo 11/1
Odds supplied by Bet365.
What has been said?
Fernando Alonso said: “Abu Dhabi will certainly be a very emotional race for me, as it will be the end of a long and happy 17 years in Formula 1. The time has come for me to move on, but I’m looking forward to ending the season – and my F1 career – on a positive note.”
Max Verstappen said: “Apart from being the last race of the year, Abu Dhabi is always a special one due to the atmosphere. The crowds are big and noisy, and being a sunset race adds to the unique feeling. After a busy few races I think everyone looks forward to getting to Abu Dhabi.”
Daniel Ricciardo said: “Abu Dhabi has always been a pretty good track for me and I enjoy going there.I’m yet to get an Abu Dhabi podium, but that would be a pretty awesome way to end my stint with Red Bull and to end the season.”
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