Hamilton faces Mercedes sack, defends Abu Dhabi rebellion

Rosberg's father Keke helps Nico put on his crash helmet before he steps into a kart

Red Bull's Max Verstappen won the race after the Mercedes pair came together on lap one as Hamilton tried to overtake his teammate which led to the team's non-executive chairman Niki Lauda to call the incident "stupid" as he blamed the Briton for being "too aggressive".

Rosberg's compatriot and Scuderia Ferrari pilot Sebastian Vettel, a three-time victor of the Abu Dhabi GP, came in second, while Verstappen finished third in front of 60,000 race aficionados on the Yas Marina F1 Circuit in the United Arab Emirates capital of Abu Dhabi.

Rosberg, as expected, was on top of the world as he was able to win an F1 championship just like his father did back in 1982 thereby matching the Graham and Damon Hill father-son duo's feat. Can't believe it's over.

"With where they were at, it was just down to those two guys", he said.

"It was so intense, the race, so tough".

Rosberg repeatedly wiped his face and lowered his head several times in the post-race media conference, appearing emotionally exhausted as he tilted back into his chair and rubbed his eyes. "Or Vettel, he is the teammate of (Kimi) Raikkonen", Keke Rosberg said. I think it's a pity we are talking about this.

Hamilton, 31, insisted he did nothing wrong, saying: "I am out there fighting".

"It looked like he made a decision to get on with it at that point, we know Max isn't the easiest auto in the paddock to overtake". Vettel and Verstappen were right on Rosberg's tail in the closing stages as Hamilton refused to accelerate - even after Mercedes asked him twice.

Rosberg could afford to lose one place to Vettel, which would have allowed the Ferrari to put pressure on Hamilton, but he said he did not want to give the position away for fear of Verstappen taking advantage.

"I was hoping he [Vettel] would close up but his tyres were going off towards the end and Nico drove well to not make mistakes".

Rosberg also confirmed that there was no way to pass Hamilton, even when he was driving at a reduced pace.

His final lap was nine seconds slower than the one that secured pole and was clearly created to put Rosberg in a vulnerable position.

But he kept his cool and his elation was evident as he let out a delighted screech of "Yes!"

However, the three-time world champion defended his tactics.

Then he jumped out of his auto and danced around the track before being hugged by his mechanics and was tossed into the air by his Mercedes crew.

The frosty atmosphere between the pair as they waited for the podium ceremony spoke volumes, with Rosberg hoisting the sport's 86-year-old commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone into the air but ignoring Hamilton.

"Congratulations to Nico, he has driven a great season this year".

Rosberg said: "I wasn't expecting it, no. Max went full on aggressive, as usual".

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