While the permutations have all been offered in some social media tickling ways like text, video and even infograms, the reality is we’ve all been saying Lewis just needs to finish 2nd place should Nico win the race. That’s all he needs to do. The two Mercedes cars will most likely have the advantage so cruising to a 2nd place takes the title should Nico win, don’t do anything silly.
That isn’t the mindset that Lewis Hamilton is entering this weekend with, not by a long shot. Hamilton doesn’t race to finish second. That ultra-competitive spirit has cost him races in the past but it also is what former McLaren team boss, Martin Whitmarsh, described as a true “racer” and they wouldn’t have changed that in Hamilton in the slightest.
Lewis enters the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to win it…period. I’m sure mechanical troubles on dog-eared machinery does cross his mind but there is little he can do about that save driving with mechanical sympathy and he’s proven to do a better job of that this year than any in his career. Often times using less fuel than most of the other drivers in the process.
No, Lewis is here to win and so is Nico. That’s the measure of it as he told the BBC:
“I come into the weekend trying to win the race, like always. So nothing changes there,” Hamilton said.
“In terms of the pressure, I don’t really feel anything. I have been racing for 20 years to prepare for it.”
For Nico Rosberg’s part, he’s looking to win and needs a little help from Lewis in order to turn that win into a championship saying:
“It’s an intense weekend. I wouldn’t use the word pressure. Lewis is a great competitor and it will hopefully be a great end to the season.
“I’m here to try to win the race and I need a bit of help from Lewis that he doesn’t finish second.”
A mechanical issue or DNF would be beyond either driver’s complete control but should there be a slight hiccup and Lewis would follow Nico home in third while Rosberg stood on the top step, you can bet the chins will be wagging and vitriol offered on the entire notion of “more deserving” or “better driver” or other tweet-friendly diatribes to vent frustration.
If this were the same scenario back in 2013, Lewis would only need to finish 6th or better (IF Nico wins…and that’s an IF) but this year its different due to double points awarded for the last race. Rosberg could fall prey to the same mechanical gremlins that Lewis could so it is all relative. Even if the points system were not doubled this year for the last race, Lewis would still be showing up to win.
Hat Tip: BBC Sport