Max Verstappen has his first chance at the Formula 1 title in Saudi Arabia. What is the scenario?


The fight for the Formula 1 title in 2021 is still tight, as Lewis Hamilton, the seven-time world champion from Mercedes, reduced the difference to eight points, with a new categorical victory on Sunday in Qatar.

With two races left to contend, the prospect of deciding the title in the final round at Yas Marina in Abu Dhabi remains a possible and even desired scenario for the neutral fans of the competition.

Moreover, in the last race, the two contenders could even start from equal points in the standings, if Hamilton wins the penultimate race, with a bonus point for the fastest lap, and Verstappen will be second, with mention that the Red Bull driver will have a 9-8 lead in racing victories.

In this scenario, the title will be won by the one who finishes before the other, in the last race, unless each is eliminated or abandoned.

If Hamilton wins at Jeddah and Verstappen finishes below second place, the Mercedes driver will be the one to start with points ahead in the last race.

An abandonment of the British would require Verstappen to get 18 points, a second place, to end the competition.

If Hamilton finished 10th, Verstappen would be second with the fastest lap to decide the title in Saudi Arabia.

If Verstappen wins with the fastest lap, it will all end if Hamilton is not in sixth place. Without the fastest lap, Hamilton should finish at least 7th, to keep the title in the last race.

There have been a lot of ups and downs this rollercoaster season, but the most likely outcome – based on form so far – is that the title fight will be contested until the final round of the season.

Hamilton has failed to score in two of the 20 races so far, Azerbaijan and Italy, as well as Verstappen, the two colliding in Italy.

Verstappen finished second seven times, with Hamilton winning six of those occasions.

The exception was Turkey, where Verstappen was second and Hamilton fifth.

In Monaco, Verstappen won with Hamilton in seventh place, but the Briton secured his fastest lap. On the two occasions when Verstappen won the fastest lap, Hamilton finished second and fourth.

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