Abu Dhabi GP: Qualifying

F1

ByTheMinF1

The final GP of the season. the title decider, the race we all want to see, and it's set in the car park of a duty free shop that people stop in for a bit on their way to the East, when their plane needs a bit more fuel. F1, so much history - and we get this!

As Kimi once said "the first couple of corners are ok, the rest is shit" Or something like that.

However, here we are. In case you didn't need reminding, it's a battle between the Merc drivers. Both have 9 wins, Nico's had one retirement and Lewis two. Both have had a poor race or two, self-inflicted wounds, but it ends here.

There are a few scenarios, but Lewis needs to win, and needs pole. Nico needs a podium, and pole would help his cause, and demoralise his opponent.

Lewis was quickest in FP1 & FP2, Sebastian Vettel was a surprise (ish) leader in FP3. Nico has had pole here for the last two years.

Nico's dad Keke, who won the 1982 championship at the last race with one win all season, is not here. Lewis's mum, not a racer, is here. Nico could be the 2nd son of a world champ to win it, after Graham & Damon Hill, but Keke would be the first champ to live to see his son succeed.

Other landmarks - Felipe Massa & Jenson Button will be competing in their last GPs, others too maybe. Herbie Blash, deputy race director for 20 years, is also retiring after this race.

The cars are on track for Q1, tyres are soft, supersoft & ultrasoft.

Just going to pop this up here for posterity: JB at the top of the timesheet:

Lewis bangs in a 1.39.5, Nico a whole second down but good enough for 2nd for now. Statement?