British driver Lewis Hamilton has won his fourth Formula One world championship following a ninth-place finish at the Mexican Grand Prix.
The Brit needed title rival Sebastien Vettel – who started on pole – to finish lower than third place to guarantee the title.
But following an opening lap collision between the two championship contenders, it led to an enthralling and tense grand prix for the Brit.
With both Hamilton and Vettel having to come into the pits after the contact that occurred at turn three at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez circuit, the pair had to fight their way through the field for the remainder of the race.
But after Vettel couldn’t finish on the podium, Hamilton came home in ninth to have an unassailable lead with two races remaining.
This title makes Hamilton the most successful British driver in the sport as he surpassed Sir Jackie Stewart’s record of three world championships. This one adds to his titles in 2008 with McLaren, and both the 2014 and 2015 wins with Mercedes.
Following the race, Hamilton said: “It doesn’t feel real. It is not the kind of race I wanted, 40 seconds behind the leader, but I never gave up. That is what is important and in my heart. I am grateful for today.
“I had a good start, I don’t know what happened on turn three, I gave him [Vettel] plenty of room. A big thank you to my family, my team, Mercedes has been incredible for these last five years.”
The imperious Dutchman Max Verstappen won his second grand prix of the season at the wheel of his Red Bull Racing machine following a dominant performance throughout the weekend, with Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas and Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen rounding out the podium places.
Mercedes had wrapped up the Constructors’ championship at the United States Grand Prix last weekend.
The 2017 Formula One season has two races remaining in Brazil and Abu Dhabi with both the Drivers’ and Constructors’ titles already decided.
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