This championship battle has been ten years in the making. Remarkably, since they first burst onto the F1 scene, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel have never properly fought head-to-head for a world title - until now.
Between them they have claimed seven convincingly earned drivers' championships, yet Hamilton and Vettel have seldom shared a racetrack while on peak form in closely matched machinery. When Hamilton won his first championship, in 2008, Vettel was busy confirming his future-star status with some storming drives for Toro Rosso, culminating in that unforgettable victory at Monza - a first for both team and driver.
Vettel was promoted to the senior Red Bull team a year later, just as the Milton Keynes massive were about to hit their stride with a series of Adrian Newey-authored cars that enabled Vettel to be largely dominant over four seasons from 2010 to 2013.