HomeSportsFormula 1Who Wins the F1 World Title if Lewis Hamiltion and Max Verstappen...

Who Wins the F1 World Title if Lewis Hamiltion and Max Verstappen Finish With Identical Points After Abu Dhabi GP?

The 2021 season of Formula One is in its last leg with just one race — Abu Dhabi GP — left to take place, but we are far from certain who will win the Driver’s Championship. We have two drivers fighting, literally, for the championship. On the one hand, we have the seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes, and on the other, there’s Red Bull’s Max Verstappen. 

The 22nd and the final race, which will take place at the Yas Marina Circuit on Sunday, will draw curtains on one of the most exciting seasons of F1 in recent years, and determine who takes the championship. Both Hamilton and Verstappen are level on points – 369.5 each. The Brit, trailing his young Belgian rival, made an epic comeback by winning the last three races and setting up this thrilling scenario.

This is also the second time in the history of F1 that two drivers have equal points, and their fate depends on the final race of the season. The last time it happened was back in 1974 when Emerson Fittipaldi, the eventual winner, and Clay Regazzoni were battling for the crown. 

But what if both Hamilton and Verstappen finish on equal points even after the final race?

Well, FIA has an answer to that. According to Article 7 of FIA’s Sporting Regulation, there are clear instructions on what happens if there is a Dead Heat.

Dead Heat is a situation in which two or more competitors in a race are exactly level on points.

According to Article 7.1, Prizes and points awarded for all the positions of Competitors who tie will be added together and shared equally.

Meanwhile, Article 7.2 says: If two or more constructors or drivers finish the Championship with the same number of points, the higher place in the Championship (in either case) shall be awarded to:

a) The holder of the greatest number of first places in a race.

b) If the number of first places is the same, the holder of the greatest number of second places in a race.

c) If the number of second places is the same, the holder of the greatest number of third places in a race and so on until a winner emerges.

d) If this procedure fails to produce a result, the FIA will nominate the winner according to such criteria as it thinks fit.

What is the Current Situation?

As mentioned earlier, both Hamilton and Verstappen have 369.5 points each, but according to FIA rules, Verstappen has the upper hand as he has nine GP wins compared to Hamilton’s eight.

How can either win the title?

The easiest answer is whoever finishes higher on Sunday takes the crown. But things get interesting if they finish ninth and 10th. The ninth position offers two points to the driver and the 10th, just one point. This is where the fastest lap point comes into play.

If the Red Bull driver comes 10th and Hamilton ninth and takes the fastest lap point, he wins the crown as the number of points collected from the race would be the same. Similarly, if Verstappen finishes ninth and Hamilton 10th with the fastest lap, it results in the same outcome.

What happens if both drivers ‘collide’ and crash out?

Since their last crash, this is one of the most talked-about scenarios. If we see a rerun of Monza GP, then that would mean both drivers crash out, and Verstappen takes the cherry.

Also, if Verstappen and Hamilton crash on Sunday, then they would follow into the footsteps of Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost in the 1989 and 1990 seasons. Michael Schumacher also deliberately drove into Damon Hill in 1994 to keep his championship lead in the title decider.

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