Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton is skeptical of Red Bull's strategy and the way in which Max Verstappen ended up with the soft tyre compound. He implied that Verstappen's lock-up during qualifying may have in fact been intentional.
The anticipation leading up to the final race in Abu Dhabi is on the rise. The Dutchman is leading Lewis Hamilton in pole position, especially given the difference in tyre strategies taken by Mercedes and Red Bull.
Here's what Lewis Hamilton had to say regarding the tyre strategy for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix:
"Maybe they know something we don't and that soft tyre was their plan all the time and we struggled I think, a little bit more on the soft tyre I think for a long run so I think we've got the right tyre but I guess we'll see tomorrow."
This is despite the fact that Verstappen defended his position, saying:
"It wasn't [always the plan] because I wanted to try and start on the medium but I flat-spotted at 1"
The Mercedes driver seems confident that the medium compound is the right choice for the start on Sunday. However, the drastically different strategy adopted by Red Bull has left the British team wondering. He is unsure if it is in fact the right choice or if it could cost them heavily at the Yas Marina Circuit.
"I prefer the battle" - Lewis Hamilton on starting in P2 in Abu Dhabi
Lewis Hamilton is not the happiest man when it comes to the tactics he believes his title contender has used to get here. However, he sure appreciates a good fight.
The Briton has dominated the sport and gone unchallenged for many years. The 2021 season has proved to be one of the most intense and thrilling seasons in the history of the sport. It is all thanks to the exhilarating battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton.
Lewis Hamilton posted about the starting grid for Abu Dhabi:
"P2 on the front row tomorrow, not bad since I prefer the battle. We’re looking strong and feeling focused — we’ve got to dig deeper than ever before."
To top this off, we are witnessing the two title contenders enter the final race of the season with equal points. This is something that has only ever happened on a single occasion before and Lewis Hamilton absolutely loves it.