Nico Rosberg will go into the final race of the season with only a 12 point lead on Lewis Hamilton for a chance to win his first ever Driver Championship. Rosberg has been fighting to overtake his teammate since the United States Grand Prix in 2015, where Hamilton secured his title last season. Rosberg went on to win the last three races of 2015, and continued that by winning first 4 Grand Prix of 2016.
Of the 20 races this season, Mercedes has won 18 of them and the team had only missed the podium once. Rosberg and Hamilton have split the Grand Prix victories down the middle with 9 wins each, but Rosberg had managed to reach the podium more times giving him a slight advantage going into Abu Dhabi.
A victory alone will not give Hamilton the win; Rosberg will have to finish lower than third if Hamilton wins to become the 2016 Driver Champion. This puts a great deal of pressure on both drivers as Rosberg surrendered the last three races to his teammate, yet still managed to finish in second place all three times. Hamilton will need to look towards Red Bull and Ferrari to snag the other two podium spots if he is to win his fourth Driver Championship.
This seems all too possible for Red Bull Racing; Max Verstappen has continued to prove his mid season promotion was a smart choice for the team. On top of this Daniel Ricciardo had consistently found his way onto the podium throughout this year. Red Bull has secured not only second place in the Constructor Standings, but both drivers could finish ahead of Ferrari in the Driver Standings if Verstappen finishes 5 points ahead of Sebastian Vettel.
With much of the season already decided going into the final race of 2016, the excitement still remains as we could see either Mercedes racer win the Driver Championship. The chance for Ricciardo and Verstappen to outperform Ferrari in both of these standings would also be a feat for Red Bull Racing, and another reason to tune in on November 27 for the Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi.