Sport

Hamilton calls Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 'manipulated' as Verstappen pips World Title

Hamilton calls Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 'manipulated' as Verstappen pips World Title

Radio messages have emerged of Lewis Hamilton calling the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix "manipulated".

Mercedes Hamilton was heading for the record books

But after a crash with five laps to go, caused by Williams driver Latifi, a safety car entered the track.

FIA race director Michael Masi allowed five cars to un-lap themselves to bring Verstappen wheel-to-wheel with rival Hamilton.

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Many have called on Masi for the unusual decision, as fans speculate that it was 'rigged'. But the FIA has defended its call.

Verstappen changed his tyres, and when the race restarted - he overtook Hamilton in a dramatic final lap of the season.

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Mercedes, who reckon race rules weren't applied correctly, have had two protests dismissed.

The team has until Thursday to act on their intention to appeal the result once again.

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On-board radios have been released from Sunday's race, where Hamilton says the race was 'manipulated' as Verstappen pulled away on the final lap in Yas Marina.

At 24, Verstappen became F1 World Champion for the first time when he reached the checkered flag.

After the race, Hamilton congratulated the young Dutchman but skipped the press conference.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ys1KSo5PpGI

Red Bull boss Christian Horner believes Mercedes' attempts to reverse the result of the F1 world championship are a "little bit desperate".

Verstappen says he isn't concerned it could get overturned.

"I and the team, we didn't do anything wrong, we just raced when there was a green light so it is what it and that's racing sometimes."

Image: Max Verstappen Twitter

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