F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Race – Live news and lap-by-lap updates

F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Race – Live news and lap-by-lap updates from the final race of the season as Max Verstappen leads and Mercedes and Ferrari battle for second in the constructors’ championship

Follow Mail Sport’s live blog for the latest news and lap-by-lap updates from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Lap 30/58

This is almost a waiting game now, as the drivers and teams weigh up when to dive back into the pits for their second stops.

The only man yet to pit is Valtteri Bottas, who is going very long.

Plenty of twists and turns to come.

Lap 28/58

The top three have settled down now.

Max Verstappen leads the race, with Charles Leclerc in second and George Russell, who has enjoyed a strong evening so far, in the final podium place.

Lando Norris is in fourth.

Behind him is Sergio Perez, whose climb up the grid is continuing apace.

Lap 26/58

Alpine’s Pierre Gasly is not a happy man.

After asking about his sluggish pace, he was reminded of the damage sustained after Lewis Hamilton’s accidental nudge.

In the points, Hamilton was told he was the quickest man out there by Toto Wolff.

Lap 25/58

There’s been another twist.

As it stands, Mercedes will take second in the Constructors’ Championship.

George Russell and Lewis Hamilton are third and eighth respectively.

As for Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, they are second and 16th.

There is a slender gap of three points.

Lap 23/58

Yuki Tsunoda has pitted from the lead, handing Max Verstappen first place again.

The gap between him and Charles Leclerc is creeping up to five seconds.

Toto Wolff came on the radio to encourage Lewis Hamilton, informing him he was the second fastest driver on the track.

Lap 22/58

Carlos Sainz handed Charles Leclerc a welcome slipstream and allowed him to pass and move into fourth place, courtesy of a boost from DRS.

Sandwiched between the two Ferraris is George Russell in fifth.

Max Verstappen is now second, with Yuki Tsunoda ahead of him.

Lap 21/58

Yuki Tsunoda is running long and is leading a race for the first time in his career.

That’s a lovely little moment for outgoing team boss Franz Tost.

Lance Stroll was briefly running second in his Aston Martin.

Lap 19/58

George Russell is bearing down on Charles Leclerc.

Lap 18/58

Charles Leclerc has now pitted.

After a decent stop, he emerged ahead of Valtteri Bottas and George Russell.

Sergio Perez has also changed tyres and is running in 12th.

For now, Yuki Tsunoda leads the pack.

Lap 17/58

Max Verstappen pits from first, and Charles Leclerc is the new race leader!

Red Bull have made the first move. The undercut is very powerful here.

The world champion was brought in first and came back out in seventh place.

Lap 16/58

Lewis Hamilton has damage!

He locked up and tapped the rear of Pierre Gasly in the fight for sixth place.

As a result, he was forced to retreat to the pits and emerged in 15th.

Lap 15/58

Lando Norris and George Russell have also pitted!

Oh dear, McLaren…

It was a slow stop – very slow, in fact – and that allowed the Mercedes to leapfrog him. In the battle for second, that could be huge.

Lap 14/58

Oscar Piastri is into the pits.

Moments before, Fernando Alonso had also changed tyres.

Will the undercut pay off down the line?

Lap 12/58

Max Verstappen has just voiced his concern over his front right tyre.

His team-mate, Sergio Perez, picked off Pierre Gasly to move into eighth.

Next in his sights? Fernando Alonso.

Lap 11/58

There you go! George Russell is ahead of Oscar Piastri.

He teed up the move at Turn 6 and after the McLaren locked up and went deep, Russell capitalised on the next straight down toward Turn 8.

He is now fourth, two seconds adrift of Lando Norris.

Lap 10/58

Max Verstappen hasn’t quite disappeared over the horizon but his lead is still hovering around the 1.5s mark.

Toward the rear, Daniel Ricciardo was told to make an emergency pit stop due to a tear-off. He is now running down in 19th.

Sergio Perez has looked to eat into Pierre Gasly’s slender advantage in eighth.

Lap 8/58

That was almost brilliant from George Russell.

He set about trying to take Oscar Piastri and moved around the outside at Turn 8.

This is very important in the wider context of this year’s standings.

Lap 7/58

Max Verstappen is out of DRS range for the first time in this race.

Behind him, Charles Leclerc is at the head of a huge DRS train.

Lando Norris is third, and Oscar Piastri remains in fourth.

As it stands, Ferrari will take second in the Constructors’ Championship…

Lap 4/58

Both McLarens have now swapped positions!

Lando Norris breezed beyond his team-mate Oscar Piastri to take third.

He’s the fastest man on track at the moment.

Lap 3/58

Sergio Perez takes Lewis Hamilton!

He moved down the inside at Turn 6 and moved into ninth.

That could prove crucial later on!

Lap 2/58

Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Perez raced hard but fairly on that opening lap.

The seven-time king of the sport is in ninth already.

Further forward, Oscar Piastri moved within touching distance of Charles Leclerc.

Max Verstappen’s lead is now over the one-second mark.

Lap 1/58

Max Verstappen survives Charles Leclerc’s early pressure.

The latter benefitted from a huge slipstream down both back straights and looked to dive down the inside at Turn 6. The world champion stayed ahead.

He then tried again around the outside at Turn 8 but couldn’t squeeze through.


And away we go!

Max Verstappen charged away from the off and led the pack around Turn 1.

Lando Norris, crucially, edged ahead of George Russell to take fourth.

Charles Leclerc is second and Oscar Piastri is third.

Time for the formation lap

The drivers are off, with Max Verstappen leading away the grid for the formation lap.

Most are on the medium tyres, though Lance Stroll, Carlos Sainz and Zhou Guanyu have opted for the hards.

Let’s do this.

Reporting for duty!

Star-studded grid

Martin Brundle has just conducted his final grid walk of the season.

There are a host of celebrities at the circuit, as usual, to take in the action.

One of them is Chris Hemsworth, who played James Hunt in Rush.

He said he is cheering for fellow Australian Oscar Piastri.

National anthem

It’s time for the Abu Dhabi national anthem, with all the drivers now assembled.

Farewell, Franz!

Today marks a swansong for AlphaTauri team principal, Franz Tost.

The 67-year-old has been in charge of Red Bull’s sister team since 2006 and has overseen the rise of several of the grid’s undisputed superstars.

He has also led the team, against the odds, to two victories.

Yuki Tsunoda will sport a special helmet today to pay tribute to Tost.

Leclerc: Nothing to lose

Charles Leclerc has previewed Ferrari's tussle with Mercedes…

‘It was a big surprise. We did not expect it. It was a really good surprise and now we have 58 laps to do, which will be very difficult to keep the position.

‘I will do absolutely everything because I have nothing to lose. The only thing that matters is second in the constructors.

‘We have to focus on ourselves and if we do the best job possible with the car we have, we will do the counting later on.

‘One thing for sure is if we are fighting Mercedes on track, I will go for it.’

Hamilton: Today will be tough

Lewis Hamilton has given his thoughts ahead of the race…

‘I am definitely excited for the season to be over and done with if I’m really honest!

‘But last day, it’s a new day and it’s an opportunity to rise and shine. Today is going to be a tough race from where we are but focused on trying to get those points.

‘I have no idea what is going to happen today. The McLarens are fast, the Ferraris are fast.’

The grid

A reminder of the starting grid for today’s race.

Below Max Verstappen, it really is all to play for!

Note Lewis Hamilton in 11th and Carlos Sainz in 16th.

Where they finish could well decide which team takes P2 in the standings.

Pit lane open!

The pit lane is now open!

We’ve got around 40 minutes before lights out…

Who’s excited?

All to play for

Here is what is at stake today…

Second place in the Constructors' Championship

Mercedes lead by four points.

Fourth place in the Constructors' Championship

McLaren lead by 11 points.

Seventh place in the Constructors' Championship

Williams lead by seven points.

Ninth place in the Constructors' Championship

Alfa Romeo lead by four points.

Good afternoon!

Hello, and welcome along to the final race of the Formula 1 season.

There will be no jaw-dropping title drama this time around, but there are plenty of enthralling battles up and down the grid to keep a very close eye on.

Ferrari and Mercedes are fighting for second place in the Constructors’ Championship, with the former trailing by just four points ahead of the finale.

Stay tuned for all the latest updates!


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