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Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2023 - Latest News, Winners, Qualifying, Circuits

The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix took over the Brazilian GP?s spot on the Formula 1 calendar since its introduction. Following a provision calendar announcement in 2008, F1 drivers and teams got ready for their inaugural trip to the Yas Marina Circuit in 2009. Since then?except in 2011, 2012, and 2013?The Abu Dhabi GP has been the last race of the season. Yas Marina is, in every aspect, a modern-day track. Although it does nothing to rival the excitement of racing in Interlagos, it?s played a pretty good host to a few championship showdowns.

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The inaugural race in 2009 became the first day-night race on the calendar. The following year saw the first champion-deciding race on the new circuit. Going into the race, Ferrari?s Fernando Alonso was in the championship lead, followed by Red Bull?s Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel. McLaren?s Lewis Hamilton was also in contention, but his chances seemed less likely. Vettel got pole position for the race and converted it into a race win. With Alonso managing only a P6, the German became the youngest championship winner.

The next title-deciding fight happened in 2016 between the Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg. As race day approached, Rosberg had a 12-point lead over Hamilton in the championship. Rosberg only needed a podium finish to win the championship, and that?s exactly what he did, despite some sly tactics employed by Hamilton. The Brit was in the lead with Rosberg in second, knowing fully well that if this continued, he?d lose the title. Hamilton started aching the field up, hoping the other drivers would catch Rosberg and challenge him for P2. That didn?t happen because Rosberg?s compatriot Vettel held his ground and brought the car home in P3.?

That became only the second season in Hamilton?s career where his teammate outperformed him. While Rosberg retired from F1 after the race, Hamilton kept his quest for title glory going. And it?s still on. Since then, the three-time champion has become a seven-time champion. Had it not been for things that happened in the most recent title showdown Abu Dhabi has seen, he could?ve been an eight-time champion.

The 2021 Abu Dhabi GP was a culmination of a season-long, explosive battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. They entered the race equal on points. With around 10 laps to go, it seemed like Hamilton would clinch his eighth title. But a late Safety Car and a questionable procedure followed during the SC period gave Verstappen the chance to steal the title from the Brit. Verstappen didn?t need a second invitation and clinched his maiden championship.?

Scheduled from 24th to 26th November, the Abu Dhabi GP is Round 23 on the calendar. Red Bull and Max Verstappen have already sealed the Constructors? and Drivers? Championship this season, but there may still be a lot to play for. The battles for P2 in both championships could be decided at Yas Marina, and so could the fight for P4 in the team standings.

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Last time out, Max Verstappen set the fastest lap in qualifying with a 1:23.824. He converted his pole to a win?a record 15th victory of the year, one he could break this season. Since 2015, the driver who qualified on pole has won the race. Considering the limited number of overtaking opportunities, qualifying is crucial in Abu Dhabi.?

Apart from the F1 action, F1?s weekend at Yas Marina is set to be a party. Popstar Ava Max is set to light up the stage on Thursday, followed by Grammy-winning Dutch DJ and producer Ti?sto the same night. To cap off the weekend and the 2023 F1 season, legendary rock band Foo Fighters will turn Yas Marina into party central!

Most Winners

Since the first Abu Dhabi GP in 2009, it has made its way into the calendar every year. The organizers have also signed a contract with F1 to host the season-ending race until at least 2030. In the 14 editions of the race, there have only been six winners, the most successful of whom is Lewis Hamilton, with 5 victories. During his time at Red Bull, Sebastian Vettel won three of the five races at Yas Marina. Max Verstappen seems to be continuing Vettel?s Red Bull legacy, winning every edition since 2020.?

Apart from these three repeat winners, Kimi Raikkonen (2012), Nico Rosberg (2015), and Valtteri Bottas (2017) have crossed the line in P1 in Abu Dhabi.

WinsDriver?NationalityYear(s)
5Lewis HamiltonGreat Britain2011, 2014, 2016, 2018, 2019
3Sebastian VettelGermany2009, 2010, 2013
Max VerstappenThe Netherlands2020, 2021, 2022

Past Constructors Winners

Lewis Hamilton is, without a doubt, the most successful driver in Abu Dhabi. With five pole positions and five wins, his stats at the circuit are better than anyone else. Rosberg and Bottas? wins, in addition to Hamilton?s four for Mercedes, make the Brackley outfit the most successful constructor as well. But it shares that feat with Red Bull.?

During the turbo-hybrid era, Yas Marina was a Mercedes track. But before and after that period, Red Bull has predominantly done the dominating. With Vettel and Verstappen?s wins, Red Bull is the only other team to have won the Abu Dhabi GP more than once.?

Hamilton won it in 2011 with McLaren, and Raikkonen in 2012 with Lotus.

WinsConstructorYears
3Mercedes2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
Red Bull2009, 2010, 2013, 2020, 2021, 2022

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Circuit Details?

The Yas Marina Circuit. It got half its name from the island it?s situated on?Yas Island. Cut by the mainland by a canal, there?s a marina right alongside the circuit. That?s where the second half of the name comes from. The circuit is one of the many designed by F1 commissioned designer Herman Tilke. Since the circuit was introduced in 2009, it has received mixed reviews. Some drivers like Nico Rosberg and Fernando Alonso found every corner unique, while drivers like Kimi Raikkonen didn?t hold back while saying how boring the track was?albeit in much harsher words.?

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In 2017, Tilke suggested that they would change the track to increase the number of overtaking opportunities. Until then, the only place it was possible to complete an overtake was the 1.2km straight. Before the controversial 2021 title showdown happened, the changes were in place. As opposed to the 5.5km, 21-corner circuit it used to be, it?s now a 5.2km, 16-corner layout.

Turns 5 and 6 were a left-right chicane leading into Turn 7, a narrow hairpin. Now, Turn 4 to the hairpin?which is much wider?is a straight that leads into the 1.2km straight. Turns 11 to 14 had a similar layout pre-2021. 11 and 12 were a left-right chicane leading into two successive slow-speed lefts. That?s now been made into a sweeping, banked curve. In the final sector, Turns 18, 19, and 20 were made less tight to allow drivers to carry more speed through the previously slow corners.?

A striking difference between Yas Marina and other tracks is its pit exit. Unlike other tracks with open exits, the one in Yas Marina dips under the circuit through a tunnel. It?s stayed the same over the years despite drivers calling it dangerous. The other changes to the track have worked to some extent, though. The last two editions of the race have seen more overtakes on average than the first 12.?

Where to watch the 2023 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix?

In the US, all F1 races this season will be broadcast live on TV by ESPNews, ESPN2, ESPN+, or ABC.?

If you?re tuning in from The Netherlands, hoping for a repeat of 2019 for Max Verstappen, Viaplay and Viaplay Xtra will stream all the live action. If you?re tuning in from Brazil, Bandeirantes and Bandsports will keep you company. Sky Sports and Channel 4 will keep you updated in the United Kingdom. Sky Sports? Italian and German divisions, Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland, are in charge in Italy and Germany. France can catch all the action on Canal+, Austria on Servus TV, Africa on SuperSport, and Canada on RDS.

In India (and everywhere else), F1TV will provide all the live-action, analysis, and Tech Talks.?

2023 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Tickets

Tickets for the Abu Dhabi GP are available on the Official Formula 1 website, on Yas Marina Circuit?s website, as well as on the F1 Experiences website. You can choose from a range of tickets, varying from Grounds Passes and Reserved Seats to Premium Hospitality.

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