Max Verstappen confirmed his third place in the Formula One drivers’ championship with a runner’s-up spot in the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi.
The 22-year-old Dutchman finished 16 seconds behind Lewis Hamilton in a race that brought the world champion his 11th win of the season, confirming his dominance. Charles Leclerc, Verstappen’s main rival for a top three finished, finished a further 26 seconds behind.
Verstappen said his Red Bull team would have to work hard over the winter to make sure he was in a position to challenge Hamilton next season.
‘It’s important that we keep this momentum going into 2020,’ he said. ‘It’s really crucial that we’re ready in Australia and don’t leave it until halfway through the season. We know that ourselves and we’re working our socks off for it.
‘We want to beat Mercedes, and our ultimate goal is to dominate in the same way Mercedes do. That means we’ve got plenty of work to do.’
A good strategy brought us P2 💪 Finishing 3rd in the championship is a nice ending of 2019. Thank you very much, @redbullracing and @HondaRacingF1, for the whole year 👊🏻 We share some really great moments together #KeepPushing #AbuDhabiGP 🇦🇪 pic.twitter.com/qmvXaU70jG
— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) December 1, 2019
Final drivers’ championship standings
- Lewis Hamilton (413 pts, 11 wins)
- Valtteri Bottas (326 pts, 4 wins)
- Max Verstappen (278 pts, 3 wins)
- Charles Leclerc (264 pts, 2 wins)
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