The 2021 Formula One season provided us with endless motorsport drama, tension, and unforgettable moments. It goes down to the wire on Sunday as Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton fight for the Championship title at the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. However, this is not the only storyline fans and bettors look forward to. Here are the additional headlines we look forward to at the Yas Marina Circuit.
The Championship Race
Let’s get the most anticipated storyline out of the way. We haven’t seen a season this close in a while. The 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix odds are close between the frontrunners. Lewis Hamilton enters at -200 while Max Verstappen trails him closely at +187. The year was an endless pit of twists and turns that made it difficult to predict the outcome. Ultimately, it all boils down to a winner-take-all duel in the Middle East.
The pair enters the race tied on points. But, Verstappen takes the lead since he scored more wins than Hamilton this year. For the Dutchman to win, both could fail to score points or Hamilton could finish ninth and Verstappen behind him in tenth place. Check out how Max Verstappen can earn his first championship title in this NitroBetting article.
The Drivers’ championship is bound to go to one of two drivers. But, the Constructors’ championship tells another storyline. The title is still up for grabs, but Mercedes heads into the weekend as favorites to win the trophy. They lead the table by 28 points and have a shot at adding 44 more points by the end of the race. If both Mercedes drivers manage to cross at least fifth and sixth, it should be enough to meet the 17-point minimum to secure the championship. Meanwhile, Red Bull brings home both titles if they tie Mercedes on points.
Behind the two teams are Ferrari. They are locked in P3 with a comfortable 38.5-point lead over McClaren. AlphaTauri faces a difficult challenge if they want to finish fifth. Red Bull’s sister team needs to outscore Alpine by 30 points to sneak into the top five. Pierre Gasly enters the race with +10000 odds to win, while Yuki Tsunoda matches Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso at +25000.
This leaves the closest constructors’ championship battle between Alfa Romeo and Williams. The former needs 11 points to overtake Williams. Both Alfa Romeo drivers and Nicholas Latifi are tied at +100000 odds to win. Meanwhile, George Russell is way ahead of the three drivers at +10000 odds.
A Reworked Yas Marina Circuit
The Yas Marina Circuit had several updates since the last Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi. It was known for a track with only a handful of overtaking points. The tweaks in the two areas are expected to lower lap times noticeably.
The first revision is at the hairpin, where the track cuts out the previous sluggish chicane and introduces a new first sector that dips to a wider, faster left-hand turn leading onto the long stretch that will test the cars’ acceleration and top speed.
The Marina Complex also sees a major change. It was previously a string of four corners–three close together from Turns 11, 12, and 13 followed by a 90-degree left-hander at Turn 14. It’s now been remodeled to a single left-hander that accommodates higher speeds.
All modifications lead to a final sector where the track cuts under the hotel. This creates more overtaking opportunities and stimulates more wheel-to-wheel racing.