Comment from Amy: looking forward to abu dhabi is a new and scary feeling.
Let us get the admin out of the way first. Twitter is being super interesting and useful today, and whilst I will try and provide highlights here, make sure you check out the Sidepodcast F1 list: http://twitter.com/sidepodcast/f1
We are live commenting the session here: http://twitter.com/sidepodcast/f1 but don't forget the fabulous dashboard (if it gets stuck, a refresh will sort it): https://sidepodcast.com/dashboard
The BBC will be live streaming the race here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport/formula_one/9186908.stm with coverage starting in about ten minutes. 5live are starting early today as well.
You'll need live timing: http://www.formula1.com/live_timing/ Text updates from Autosport: http://live.autosport.com/commentary.php/id/301 And McLaren's race data: http://mclaren.com/home/
You should be good to go now!
This is the last race of the year, and the championship decider, but it's also Bridgestone's final outing in the sport.
Tweet from @andystobart: After 14 years, 700,000 tyres, 174 wins, 169 fastest laps, 11 constructors and 10 drivers championships, Bridgestone's final F1 GP is here
How do things stand going into today's race then?
Sebastian Vettel took a fabulous pole position yesterday, so he's starting from the best possible position on the grid today.
|1||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull|
|5||Mark Webber||Red Bull|
I'm not going to try and explain the permutations for winning the world championship, mostly because I don't know them myself.
I believe the only thing to worry about is if Alonso finishes ahead of Webber, he's likely won it.
Don't hold me to that though.
Tweet from @clubforce: For Force India, its been a memorable season. We didn't have a 2009 SPA moment but we did have some great races... What's your top Force moment of the Season?
Well, Sutil has kept us entertained all year!
Those are the winners of the races so far. Who do you think will get it today? Don't forget to vote! https://sidepodcast.com/2010/11/14/live-abu-dhabi-2010-the-race/
|Yas Marina Circuit|
|Local Timezone||+0400 GMT|
|Number of Laps||55|
Tweet from @fergieweather: ABU DHABI latest: Showers inland continue signs of decay; dry conditions expected into this evening
I have never heard of a decaying shower. It doesn't sound pleasant.
Lotus thank their fans.
Tweet from @radarguruf1: #F1 radar latest 16:20: The showers to the south-west of #Abudhabi city are fizzling out and we are set for a hot and dry title finale.
Fizzling out is a much nicer way of putting it.
|(source Daimler AG)|
|Downforce Level||8 / 10|
Here are the fastest laps throughout the weekend so far:
|Free Practice 1||Vettel||1:42.760|
|Free Practice 2||Hamilton||1:40.888|
|Free Practice 3||Vettel||1:40.696|
Jake Humphrey says: "If Alonso keeps Webber behind him, he only needs a fourth place finish to win the championship."
That's exactly what I said earlier. Eh-hem.
Comment from Turkey Machine: @FBFB: Any idea what fastest lap today could be?
The fastest lap from the 2009 race was Sebastian Vettel with a 1:40.279. That, therefore, is the lap record. Could potentially be beaten today, of course.
Pole in 2009 was 1:40.948. This year it's over a second quicker, so the fastest lap could equally be a lot faster too.
Whilst we're on the subject of history, last year's race time is 1hr 34minutes and 3 seconds. I'll save you the tenths of a second! Let's hope we're in for an exciting 90 minutes today.
Tweet from @MikeGascoyne: Pit lane open, both cars doing two laps to the grid
Great segment on the BBC with Murray Walker and Stirling Moss. Murray says he's watched every race since F1 began in 1950. That... is a lot of races.
And talking of fastest laps and the like, here are the stats from this season so far.
Interview with Button: "The car feels much better. I brake and I can actually see where I'm going now. We're just going to get the maximum points we can. It's sad for those guys that we're involved in this race, but that's the way it is. Our car is quick here. Sundays have been great all year, but Saturdays have sometimes been a weakness. It's not a bad place to qualifying."
Interview with Vettel: "We start from pole, so things are looking good. We've had good starts in the past, so it should be alright. For now, I think we have to focus on the race, not what might or could happen afterwards. I leave it to those people to come up with the numbers to calculate, I will stick to driver."
On his gridwalk, Brundle says there are 328 championship permutations. He may be exaggerating, but no wonder I couldn't work it out!
Brembo call this Turn 5, we think it's Turn 8, but it's the one at the end of the long straight.
|(forecast data from Brembo)|
|Maximum Pedal load||149kg|
Tweet from @ymcofficial: The UAE National Anthem is playing, we are almost ready to go racing #YMCGP
Does anyone else want to do the arm movements when they read YMC?
Interview with Horner:
Well. I wrote the interview with Horner, but it disappeared. I'll paraphrase: "Glad we got the constructor's out the way, either driver could win it." Nothing surprising there!
Tweet from @eddstrawf1: Atmosphere similar to pre-race Brazil 2008 - only even more tense! This will be a day people talk about for decades!
Horner and Whitmarsh are chatting away on the grid. They look quite friendly.
Comment from lou: the last time we'll see a no.1 on Jensons car for at least a year!
Technically it is still daylight out there, but we don't have many opportunities to use the moon!
I have closed the poll, and you have voted for Sebastian Vettel to be your race winner today. Makes a lot of sense. Hamilton is just a few votes off him though. The others further back on votes.
Don't forget the battle between Tony Fernandes and Richard Branson. One of them may be wearing an air stewardess outfit after this race.
The grid is clearing, the formation lap is about to begin.
Brundle has just pointed out that Kubica is the first driver from the front on medium tyres - so he may cause a headache with a different strategy.
Vettel leads them away on the formation lap, backing them up as per usual.
Ahhh, I love it when the mechanics have to run, run, run off the grid.
Tweet from @gcreighton: Pressure. #F1
All move off the grid cleanly. Button got the jump on Alonso, up to third.
Accident between Schumacher and Liuzzi.
Safety car deployed.
Rosberg tipped Schumacher into a spin, leaving the Mercedes facing the wrong direction. Liuzzi couldn't do anything, and smashed into MSC.
The Force India is mounted on the back of the car - luckily missing the driver. Both are out of the cars safely.
The Safety Car will stop Vettel scampering away in the lead.
For now, anyway.
All cars take the shortcut at Turn 5.
Pit stops - Rosberg, Petrov, Alguersuari, Senna, Di Grassi, Klien.
They are taking the shortcut! That is quite genius. Don't think I've ever seen that before.
The replay shows Rosberg didn't actually touch Schumacher, but Michael still spun it. Also impressive from everyone else to miss the car, Liuzzi had nowhere to go.
Team radio from Hamilton: "Is my car okay? Can you just check my front wing?"
He's worried about potential contact in the first corner, but the team confirm they are checking - everything seems okay.
Tweet from @autosportlive: Alonso will be champion if the order ends like this, with Webber right behind him knowing he needs to overtake the Spaniard.
More replays, Alonso didn't get a bad start, it's just Button had an awesome one. Webber couldn't make any progress from fifth.
The cars are cleared off track, so the train doesn't have to take the shortcut anymore. Safety Car should be coming in shortly.
Hamilton on the radio again complaining about the brakes, and the team want more energy in the tyres.
Schumacher and Liuzzi walk through the pitlane, both look quite happy and comfortable with each other. A racing incident, no tension there.
Marshals are just sweeping the track at the scene of the accident, somewhat frantically, you might say.
McLaren radio suggests there is oil on the track, so the marshals may be sorting cement dust with their brushes.
Christian Klien posts the fastest lap of the race, a glorious 2:25.784. That won't last long!
Tweet from @sschaumloeffel: who else looove the safety car! the sound the look..seen it a lot this year
Track is clear.
Vettel was a bit sneaky there, backing up quite considerably, and that meant Hamilton had a moment beside him. All away cleanly though.
They're kicking up quite a lot of dust at the site of the accident, but it should only take a few laps for that to clear.
A fastest lap from Vettel now - 1:46.549. That's more like it.
Liuzzi is still wandering about the pitlane, he looks a little less smiley now.
Kobayashi tried to pass Barrichello, and he got in front but couldn't make the place stick, so Rubens instantly had the place back.
Tweet from @clubforce: Kubica has passed Adrian for P9 who is now in P10 ...
Vettel is pulling out a bit of a gap to Hamilton now, who in turn is extending his lead over Button.
Mark Webber just brushed the barrier, but the car looks like it is okay for now. In front of him, Alonso doesn't seem to have enormous pace.
Replays show Webber's right rear clipped the wall. It's be a puncture if anything, but it looks like he has got away with it.
Rosberg has passed Hulkenberg for 13th place.
Replays show Massa running straight through the cement dust. It looks a bit of an obstacle.
Webber is coming into the pitlane. A very early stop, especially as the Safety Car should have extended the pit window.
The Ferrari mechanics are looking ready to welcome a car as well.
Holly Samos reports from the pitlane that anyone on the option tyres is struggling, perhaps explaining the early stops. The Ferrari crew are standing down though.
Ferrari mechanics in the pitlane again.
Comment from Lukeh: Ferrari and in, out, in, out but it's still to be determined if they are shaking it all about
I'm busy watching Massa to see if he comes out in front of Webber, but naturally the TV directors cut away from it. I think perhaps he did not.
Webber is up to 15th, as Alguersuari may or may not have moved out of his way.
Massa was stopped for longer, see.
Webber has put in the fastest first sector of the race on those harder tyres (technically medium tyres).
Ferrari mechanics out again. Must be Fernando this time.
Alonso had a bit of a wobble, close to the barriers then, but he's in to the pits.
Alonso joins the pack ahead of Webber, just about a second in front.
Faster pit lane speed, but slightly slower stop for Alonso.
So, Vettel still leads ahead of Hamilton and Button, but they have not yet stopped.
Those that stopped under the safety car look good for now, as Rosberg is in the lead (of the pit-stoppers). Petrov is next, then Alonso. But will they need to stop again for fresh tyres later in the race?
Heidfeld puts in the fastest lap of the race so far - 1:44.982.
Tweet from @MikeGascoyne: Jarno struggling with rear locking under the breaks, lsoing some time to heikki but still pulling away from Timo
Barrichello pits from fourth place.
There's some serious speed at the front.
Tweet from @ManipeF1: After pitting, ALO and WEB are lapping at the same speed as the leaders. They need to clear PET quickly though. #F1
Both have pitted so that is genuinely for position.
Remember, lower on the graph is better.
Team radio to Alonso: "I see you are doing your best, but really it's critical to pass him. I know you're doing your best."
Tweet from @AdamHayNicholls: Renault engine in Petrov's car. I suspect some messages have been passed between Horner and Boullier
It wouldn't be F1 without a conspiracy theory or two.
Alonso tries desperately to pass Petrov, and ran wide off track on both sides. He was close to the rear of the Renault. Frustration sets in.
Lewis returns to the track in fifth place, just ahead of Sutil and behind Kubica.
Same stopped time as Alonso.
Vettel pits from the lead.
Sebastian returns to the track ahead of Kobayashi, so he is in second. Kamui is close behind him but Vettel keeps the position.
Kubica tries to pass Kobayashi, but has to give the corner back to the Sauber. He's close behind him though.
Another couple of corners later, and Kubica is past, tucked up behind Vettel. Hamilton is next to try and get past Kamui.
Team radio between Lewis and team regarding Vettel: "How is he so far ahead?" "His pace through the pitstops, his pace through the pitstops."
3.8 is the fastest one!
Button is leading now, and has just set the fastest lap - 1:44.339.
He has to pit, of course.
Hamilton gets past Kobayashi. He's behind Kubica now, but Kub has yet to stop.
Vettel's fastest lap now - 1:43.564.
Ted news - McLaren have one eye on the constructors championship and are running Button as long as they can. They want him out in second behind Vettel. If they had to, presumably they would swap he and Hamilton.
Tweet from @F1Weekender: One for you #Factfans out there. If Vettel takes the title today he will win the WDC without topping the standings all season #F1
It's definitely night time there. I stand by our use of the moon earlier.
Replays show Trulli with a broken front wing. He's heading back to the pitlane, causing sparks as he goes.
Perhaps I should have started with a sun widget and then repeated it once the moon was out. What do you mean stop babbling about the weather, there's a championship being decided!?
Alonso running a bit wide again as he continues to follow Petrov.
Lotus pit stop shows the mechanic struggling to get the front wing off and replace it. Finally they manage to do so. I dread to think what their pit stop time was!
Hamilton is close up behind Kubica. All championship contenders struggling with Renaults it seems.
Overtaking is just so hard around here.
Team radio to Hamilton: "Keep trying, keep trying. We had to try something with the strategy. Just keep going. You'll get your chance."
I do think these engineers could make relaxation tapes, they are good at soothing frustrated drivers.
Hamilton is looking pretty ragged out there. Kubica does have to stop again but Vettel is getting away!
Lewis thinks he needs to pit again, as his front left is not holding up. The team definitely don't want that to happen.
His last lap was his best!
Replays show Lewis locking up around one of the corners, which will not help his tyre situation. It looks like there is at least one flat spot there.
|19||Lucas di Grassi||1|
Petrov made a bit of a mistake, but there was no opportunity for Alonso to overtake, no matter how close he got.
More replays show Hamilton running wide. Still bad for the tyres.
The race has hit a bit of a lull now as we're just waiting for someone to blink. Whether that means pitting or an accident or something, we don't know. There's little chance of overtaking at the moment.
Crofty just pointed out there are only 19 laps to go, which comes as a bit of a surprise. The race only just started, didn't it?
Comment from David in NZ: Man this race would be dull if it weren't all to play for. You have drivers with everything to gain and they just can't pass.
Hulkenberg pits from 9th.
As one commentators is fond of saying: "Something's happening!"
It was a clean stop, and Hulk is back out in 10th, behind Alonso.
Tweet from @eddstrawf1: Vettel still might win this championship on the ludicrously close basis of a countback to fourth places!
Buemi is stopping from 7th. I didn't notice him get that high!
Back to our lull in action.
Still, at least the hotel is pretty.
McLaren mechanics are in the pitlane to welcome Button.
Vettel returns to the lead, and Button returns to the track 4th.
A good fast stop for Button, but not enough to make any major leaps forward.
This is mostly meaningless, because Kubica and Sutil still have to pit and are blocking up the top five.
Team radio from Vettel: "I have a little bit of a problem with the radio, so make sure everything is on the pitboard."
Let's hope they heard that though!
Kovalainen has pitted from 17th place. He is one lap down already though.
Button sets the fastest lap so far - 1:42.380.
Team radio to Alonso: "Use the best of your talent. We know how big it is."
Tweet from @Gulashi: Renault giveth Alonso two championships and they taketh away
Tweet from @Gulasahi: Renault giveth Alonso two championships and they taketh away
Ten laps to go.
Hamilton hits another bollard. Those cameras are taking a pounding!
Timo Glock has pulled his Virgin Racing car off track. He's out of the car, his race over.
The Renault mechanics finally come out in the pitlane.
Kubica returns to the track ahead of Petrov and therefore Alonso.
Sutil pits! That's all drivers having pitted. AT LAST.
Five laps to go.
Vettel has about a ten second gap over Hamilton now.
Interestingly, all drivers have only stopped once. That's unusual in this day and age. No mechanical problems or anything. Even Trulli's front wing change coincided with a regularly scheduled pit stop.
Two laps remain. Apologies for just counting down the laps. There is little else to report.
Trulli's rear wing is falling apart, and has left a bit of debris on track. It is just off the racing line though, assuming all drivers can see it and avoid it.
Sebastian Vettel wins the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and becomes the 2010 F1 World Champion!
I'd give you a direct transcription of the Vettel radio, but it's a bit tricky. He's crying. Something like: "YAYYY!"
Alonso pulls up beside Petrov and gestures that the Renault lost him the World Championship. Not true, Fernando. It was the track.
Interview with Horner: "It's unbelievable. It's been a very emotional week for this team. Sebastian, it's the first time he's led the world championship, and he's done it at the last race of the year. Great job, great season. Mark can also be very proud of what he's achieved this year. It's an amazing feeling to be double world champions."
Vettel takes over Alonso's mantle as the youngest F1 champion ever.
Alguersuari finished in the points! Great job from him.
Sebastian Vettel - race winner, world champion.
Vettel, Hamilton and Webber on the podium - the last three champions.
Tweet from @tonyfernandes: We did it. We did it.
Eddie Jordan's exclusive interview with Dietrich Mateschitz results in this single quote: "I can't remember a prouder moment."
That's an exclusive, mind you.
Tweet from @clubforce: End of a great season. No points from the race for either Williams or us... but we finish P7 in the constructors...
Interview with Alonso: "Tough race, difficult race. We lost one position at the start. In the safety car period, Petrov and Rosberg came in. We saw some problem with the soft tyres. it was difficult to overtake, Petrov was very quick on the top speed. This is the sport, this is motor racing, some times you win, sometimes you lose. congratulate red bull and sebastian, and we'll try again next year."
Press conference quotes - Sebastian Vettel: "I'm a bit speechless to be honest. I don't know what you're supposed to say in this moment. It has been an incredibly tough season for myself, for all of us. Physically and mentally especially. We have always kept believing in us, our team and the car. Today was a special day all around. This morning I got up and tried not to think about anything, just tried to do my own thing. The only thing I can do is try to win this race and do my best. We have only led this championship once, when it matters.
The car was phenomenal today. The start was crucial, very tight with Lewis... It helped, was good for all of us, cooled us down, that Lewis got held up behind Kubica, so I could make a gap. To be honest, I didn't know anything until I crossed the chequered flag. I was wondering, because my race engineer was trying to give some advice. I was thinking, why is this guy so nervous? Then crossing the line he came on the radio, he said: "It's looking good, we have to wait for the cars to finish." Then he comes on the radio and screams at me that we have won the world championship."
Press conference quotes - Sebastian Vettel: "I think we have seen incredible fights and a tight season. I don't know how many times we had a different leader in this championship. Some people got written off in this championship very early, then they came back. Meaning Fernando. McLaren came back, Lewis was leading the championship. All of us can try to talk about races where we should have finished in higher positions. All of us, I think, we had to go through ups and downs. It has been extremely intense and a tough season mentally. Sometimes to be able to ignore what people are saying and to get your own thing done. I'm very, very proud."
Press conference quotes - Lewis Hamilton: "I'm sure the team did everything for the right reasons, and at the time we needed to jump Sebastian. I guess it was unfortunate we came up behind a Renault.
"It's not been the most spectacular season for us, but huge congratulations to Sebastian and to Renault. For us, it was a great end of season result for me and Jenson. Big thank you to all the guys back home and the factory. Next year will be a better year."
Press conference quotes - Jenson Button: "We were trying to get out in front of Kubica, who also was going very long but on the prime tyre. It was working pretty well, but as the stint went on there was more degredation on the soft tyre and it wasn't possible to jump him on those.
"I think this season as a whole has been very up and down for a lot of people, as Sebastian has said. I'd like to say a big thank you to the team, this is my first year with the team and I really feel at home. We can really build on this season for next year. We're going to have a little break now but then we'll be back on it."
We Are The Champions is blaring out of the Red Bull garage. Again!
Interview with Webber: "Early in the race we had to make a few calls to get out of that position we were in. It wasn't too bad, going for the harder tyre pretty early. Obviously that hurt Fernando because he had to cover me off. In a way, it was a bit of a team effort, I suppose. I didn't get the result I wanted. Fully congratulate Seb on the world championship. Lot of positives this year. This weekend didn't turn out. Tt's a shame obviously. That's the way sport is sometimes.
"There's quite a few emotions, when you come so close to the top and just miss out, it's a shame. But I tried my absolute hardest, great guys around me, and we did what we could but it wasn't enough. And that's where it's at. Two championships for the team, that's enough for us."
Tweet from @gcreighton: 118 DAYS, 21 HOURS, 41 MINUTES AND 4 SECONDS BEFORE THE BAHRAIN GP ... bliss. #F1
I think that is enough typing for one Factbyte Factbox. I cannot thank everyone enough for following along, and making these last few races interesting. (Except this one!)
There will be much discussion and debate about the season on Sidepodcast, I'm sure. So stay tuned for full results and analysis soon.
In non F1 news, look out for the Factbyte Factbox covering a myriad of other live events over the off-season.
I will see you very soon!
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