This is something many F1 fans would disagree with because of how the final race of the season, the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, culminated, but the overall stats do back it up!
Both Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton were level on 369.5 points going into this race in what was set up as a winner-takes-all battle as the winner would claim the 2021 F1 Drivers’ Championship.
The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was exactly what fans were hoping for as it was filled with drama and talking points. The biggest drama of the race came in the final couple of laps after a Safety Car was called upon when Nicholas Latifi crashed into the barrier.
This closed the gap between the leader Hamilton and Verstappen, but it also provided a huge problem for the Brit because of the lapped cars between them.
The rules of F1 state that when a Safety Car is leaving the track, all cars that were lapped during are then able to unlap themselves before the race restarts. The FIA at first decided that no cars were going to be able to unlap themselves, but they soon changed their decision and asked just the cars that separated Hamilton and Verstappen to go and unlap themselves.
Confusing, we know...
There were still more cars that should have been able to unlap themselves, according to the rules. If these rules had been followed, then the race would not have been able to finish as it was the final lap, therefore Hamilton would have been crowned champion.
After Verstappen had pitted during the Safety Car, he had much fresher tyres and was able to overtake Hamilton during the final lap and go on to be crowned F1 Drivers’ Champion for the first time in his career.
Looking at the stats...
After looking at the in-depth stats of the Formula One season, Verstappen is shown to have been the more impressive driver throughout. This does not eclipse the drama of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, but could potentially show that Verstappen was the deserved winner of the F1 Drivers’ Championship.
The Dutchman recorded an impressive 10 Grand Prix wins with his rival winning eight, Verstappen also recorded double the amount of pole positions as Hamilton. Another stat that the Red Bull driver led was podiums, as he finished the season with 18 and Hamilton had 17.
Verstappen impressively led races for 652 laps across the season, which is over double how many laps Hamilton led races for. There was also a large gap between the two in how many kilometres they had led for as Verstappen had led for 2,989 and the Mercedes driver had led for 1,582.
The stats look heavily in Verstappen’s favour, so although the victory came with controversy, Max Verstappen ended up claiming what he deserved with the F1 Drivers’ Championship.News Now - Sport News