Hamilton signs off for 2019 with Abu Dhabi dominance
Lewis Hamilton secured a peerless victory at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to sign off another title-winning campaign in style.
Hamilton led every lap from pole position to take a fifth victory at the Yas Marina Circuit and secured a sixth career grand chelem by setting the fastest lap late in the piece – only Jim Clark (8) now has more in F1 history.
Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc joined Lewis Hamilton on the podium, although Bottas could yet be promoted to third place, with Leclerc racing under the threat of disqualification from the race.
The FIA revealed shortly before lights out that the amount of fuel in Leclerc's car had not matched what Ferrari reported, flouting technical regulations.
The season-finale in the Emirates played out in familiarly low-key fashion, especially at the front where Hamilton simply blasted clear from the off.
An 84th win of Hamilton's career puts Michael Schumacher's record 91 even closer in sight, with another title charge in 2020 likely for the Mercedes star.
Verstappen and Leclerc will be expected to lead the charges against Hamilton next year, provided Ferrari and Red Bull can produce suitable machines.
But neither could cling onto Hamilton's coattails around Yas Marina, Verstappen providing one of the race's highlights with a smart move on Leclerc as both negotiated their way y the back-marking Williams of George Russell, who ends 2019 as the only pointless driver on the grid.
Although Bottas could yet inherit third, he could not pass Leclerc on-track, but finished ahead of fellow front-runners Sebastian Vettel and Alexander Albon, the Ferrari man taking fifth place late in the race after a poor pit-stop had hampered his earlier efforts.
The Finn's progress through the field was made all the more impressive by an 18-lap wait for DRS to be enabled due to a technical fault.
Behind the top six, Carlos Sainz secured sixth place in the drivers' championship with a last-lap overtake on Nico Hulkenberg for 10th place.
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