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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 2nd position, congratulates Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing, 1st position, in Parc Ferme
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Special feature

The Abu Dhabi 2021 consequence F1 missed this year

OPINION: A year on from the most controversial ending to a Formula 1 season in a generation and some would have the Abu Dhabi 2021 title decider quietly forgotten about. But it will always be worth revisiting both for many reasons – including how it impacted Lewis Hamilton’s legend, fed into his 2022 story and will likely fuel the rest of his career

Firmly in darkness after another twilight race ended the campaign, the Abu Dhabi paddock is bustling. The atmosphere fizzing – people moving quickly, others congregating. Hugs flowing, Toto Wolff happily posing for selfies. How the 2022 Formula 1 season ended was rather different to 2021.

Not quite a year before – the event held three weeks earlier this time as F1 wanted to avoid a direct clash with the Qatar football world cup to avoid lower TV ratings – things were so different for Mercedes and the championship overall. In the immediate post-race aftermath of Abu Dhabi 2021, legal wranglings were ongoing, officials and team members talked and argued, the media was updated and briefed.

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