ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — Max Verstappen won a record 15th victory season 2022 at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Sunday to end one of the most exciting seasons in F1 history.
A year after Verstappen’s tense and controversial victory over Lewis Hamilton to seal his first title, there was no drama at the Yas Marina circuit.
Verstappen, who set the F1 record three weeks ago in Mexico, was ahead of his teammate Sergio Pérez at the start and has never had a major problem on his way to victory since.
Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc held off a challenge to Pérez on old tires with a second and second place in the standings, derailing Red Bull’s bid for first and second.
Overall, the whole season has been incredible and the team has been a lot of fun. Thank you all for your hard work 💪 pic.twitter.com/nsUP2qhOIj
— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) November 20, 2022
A hydraulic problem cut short Lewis Hamilton’s run for Mercedes as the seven-time champion finished an F1 season without a win for the first time in his career.
Four-time champion Sebastian Vettel finished 10th with Aston Martin after retiring from F1 after 16 years.
Ahead of his last Formula One race, Sebastian Vettel lined up to sing the national anthem wearing an Earth T-shirt, a sign of his environmental activism. Then eight jet planes flew overhead, leaving colored smoke in their wake.
It was a moment that highlighted the delicate balance that the four-time F1 champion maintains as a lifelong motor racing fan increasingly worried about the toll his passion is taking on the planet.
“It’s a huge privilege to be in the position we’re in, and with that comes a certain responsibility. So I hope to pass on some to the other riders so they can continue the good work. It’s great to see that we have the opportunity to inspire you with what we do and what we say,” Vettel said after the race.
“I think there are far more important and important things than lap racing, but obviously that’s what we love. And because of that, if we can convey some of the really important values, that would be great.”
As Red Bull champion for four years in a row from 2010 to 2013, Vettel most recently used his high status in Formula One to defend human rights and highlight environmental issues such as the death of bees and the extraction of oil from tar sands in Canada. his Aston Martin team is sponsored by Saudi oil giant Aramco.
While he expressed concerns about F1’s “resource burning”, the German remained a superfan who bought former champion Nigel Mansell’s 1992 Williams car and ran it on carbon-neutral fuel to showcase at this year’s British Grand Prix. .
On the track on Sunday, wearing a helmet with the words “Last Lap” Vettel had a disappointing race after 16 years in F1.
“We are just being eaten. Who’s next to pass us? Sitting duck,” he complained over the radio when Aston Martin left him on old tires. Later: “Why are we so wrong in strategy?” Starting ninth, he gradually fell back, but recovered and scored the last point of his career in 10th place.
Despite being hindered by strategy, Vettel still managed to take on rookie Zhou Guanyu and fellow veteran Daniel Ricciardo in the combat end of a journey that began with his father giving him a go-kart when he was 3 years old.
Vettel is keen to spend more time with his family instead of being away for a few weeks as the F1 calendar expands to 24 races next year.
After turning his car into donuts to the crowd’s applause, Vettel said he felt “devastated” at the knowledge that his career was finally coming to an end. “So many flags, so many smiling faces, which was very, very special, very sweet,” he said. “I’m sure I’m going to miss more than I realize right now.”
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Logan Sargent has received the super license he needs to drive for Williams in Formula 1 and will be the first American on the Formula 1 grid since 2015 when he makes his debut next season.
Sargeant needed to finish at least sixth in the season’s Formula Two standings to qualify for an F1 super licence. Williams previously said the Florida driver would get a spot for 2023 if he met the requirements and helped him do so by giving him time to practice in F1 sessions.
“It is a huge honor and a dream come true to be able to compete in Formula One with Williams Racing,” Sargent said in a press release.
“A huge thank you to all the staff at Williams Racing and Dorilton Motor Sports for the support they have given me since the day I first joined the team at the 2021 US Grand Prix.
“Participating in the Williams Driver Academy last year gave me an important platform to develop as a driver and prepared me for the next chapter.
“I’m ready and excited to be a part of this journey as the team looks to move up the grid.”
— Williams Racing (@WilliamsRacing) November 21, 2022
Sargent, 21, finished fourth in the F2 standings after finishing fifth in the last race of the season on Sunday.
Sargent was unexpectedly helped during the race when Jack Doohan, one of the drivers who could have overtaken him in the standings, drove into the pits from the lead and lost a wheel on the pit exit. Japan’s Ayumu Iwasa took the win on Sunday ahead of Formula 2 champion Felipe Drugovic, F1 substitute for Aston Martin.
At Williams, Sargeant takes the place in the race, which this year is occupied by Canadian Nicholas Latifi. His teammate will be British-born Thai rider Alex Albon.
The last American driver in F1 was Alexander Rossi, who started in five races for the now defunct Manor Marussia team. Since then, the popularity of Formula One in the United States has skyrocketed as a new audience flocked to the sport thanks to the Neftlix documentary series Move to Survive. The US will host three of next season’s 24 races as Las Vegas joins existing events in Miami and Austin, Texas.
Another American, IndyCar star Colton Herta, was considered for a F1 spot for 2023 with Team AlphaTauri but was denied a license. The points system used to determine who is eligible favors FIA-sanctioned series such as F2 over IndyCar and others.
Rossi was among those who supported Hertha, saying it was clear he had the talent to compete in Formula One.