Racing: Lewis Hamilton wins F1 season finale in Abu Dhabi

Racing: Lewis Hamilton wins F1 season finale in Abu Dhabi
Lewis Hamilton celebrates after winning the Emirates Formula One Grand Prix at the Yas Marina racetrack in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on Nov. 25. (Kamran Jebreili / Associated Press)

World champion Lewis Hamilton coasted to victory from pole position at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Sunday.

Having already secured a fifth F1 title, the British Mercedes driver beat Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel at the Yas Marina circuit to secure his 11th win of the season and 73rd of his career.


It was a symbolic finish to a season in which, again, Hamilton showed his superiority under pressure to beat Vettel into second place overall for the second straight year.

Red Bull driver Max Verstappen finished third in the race ahead of teammate Daniel Ricciardo for a fifth straight podium.

Hulkenberg fine after crash

The race was held up after a spectacular first-lap crash involving Nico Hulkenberg, who was sent tumbling into the barriers by French driver Romain Grosjean. The Renault driver finally settled upside down but was unharmed and eventually climbed out.

Grosjean has a reputation as one of F1's more reckless — or adventurous — drivers. He caused the crash by clipping the right rear tire of Hulkenberg's car, sending it tipping upward, barreling over and sliding on its back. As some smoke billowed from the car, a fearful-sounding Hulkenberg urged his team to get him out fast.

“I'm hanging here like a cow,” he said. “There's fire. There's fire.”

After a few moments, Hulkenberg's Renault was tipped over the right way and the German driver climbed out unassisted. His car was crane-lifted off the track. The incident held up the race for a few laps, with drivers forced to slow down behind a safety car, until the race resumed on Lap 5.

F1 gets new tire deal

Formula One has reached a new four-year deal with Pirelli as its tire supplier from 2020-23 inclusive.

F1 Chairman and CEO Chase Carey said that “we are delighted to have reached this agreement, which guarantees a long-term stable future.”

The current partnership expires at the end of 2019.

Starting in 2021, F1 will move toward narrower front tires.

Governing body FIA also wants tires that degrade more slowly in order to encourage more aggressive driving.