Formula 1 2014

A look back at the 2014 Formula 1 season.

The fireworks exploded as Lewis Hamilton crossed the finish line in Abu Dhabi collecting his second Formula 1 Driver's World Championship.

It has been a turbulent season in the motorsport with in-fights, bitter rivalries, administrations and tragedy but there has been some fantastic driving along the way. Hamilton finished the season on 384 points, well clear of his Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg in second, to reclaim the Formula 1 title for British motorsport.

The entire championship was dominated by the rivalry between Hamilton and Rosberg who managed to break the dynasty of Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel. The Brit and German exchanged some heated words throughout the season but ultimately it would be Hamilton that rose to the top after a pulsating final race.

There was also immense sadness when a crash in the Japanese Grand Prix left Marussia driver Jules Bianchi in intensive care and sent shockwaves through F1. The Frenchman recently came out of a coma but is still in "critical" condition. The thoughts of the F1 world remain with Bianchi and his family.

For Mercedes it was a hugely successful campaign with the team running away with the Constructor's World Championship. The German manufacturer finished on a massive 701 points, almost 300 clear ahead of nearest challenger Red Bull. There were casualties along the way with both Caterham and Marussia going into administration.

Here is our look back at the 2014 Formula 1 season.

Hamilton triumphs in Abu Dhabi

It all came down to the final race in Abu Dhabi. A win for Rosberg at the Brazilian Grand Prix on November 9th gave the German a chance of claiming the title. The omens were good for Rosberg with the title challenger claiming pole position in qualifying but this was as good as it got for the German.

Hamilton, starting in second, got off to a great start under the setting sun at the Yas Marina circuit taking the lead shortly after the flag went down. The problems increased for Rosberg who struggled throughout and was hampered even further when his hybrid system failed. However, even when he was told to retire by Mercedes he responded with "I would like to go to the end".

Hitting the home straight, fireworks exploded as Hamilton took the checkered flag. He paraded the British flag around the circuit and even received a special congratulation from Prince Harry who called Hamilton "a legend" over the radio.

Another British triumph

Hamilton's victory gave Britain its 15th Formula 1 Championship winner and gave the Mercedes driver his second title. Despite the rivalry with Rosberg throughout, Hamilton managed to stay composed and win 11 races compared to his teammates' five. Finishing 67 points clear at the top of the driver's standings it was clear Hamilton was deserved champion.

The Brit kicked off the season in fine form winning four of the first five races before Rosberg clawed back some of the early initiative. There was a special moment in July when Hamilton was finally able to win a Grand Prix on home soil when he romped home to victory in front of a raucous British crowd.

Victories kept on coming as the Mercedes team began to pull away from Rosberg with wins in Italy, Singapore, Japan, Russia and the US. A second-placed finish in Brazil on the penultimate round of racing put Hamilton in the driving seat going into the final race and under the Abu Dhabi night sky he duly delivered the win.

Mercedes domination

From race one Mercedes has dominated this year's Formula 1 Constructor's Championship. The team had at least one podium in every round of the campaign with both Rosberg and Hamilton enjoying 16 race wins between them. The team's dominance was perfectly demonstrated in the final total of 701 points, streaks ahead of Red Bull with just 405 points.

Traditional powerhouses such as Ferrari and McLaren endured miserable seasons with the Italian team finishing fourth with 216 while McLaren were in fifth with 181. Red Bull, which had enjoyed four consecutive wins with Sebastian Vettel, struggled to keep up with Mercedes.

The Austrian team was dealt another blow when Vettel announced in October that he will be leaving the team to join Ferrari for the 2015 season.

Mercedes' win was not as straightforward as it seems as the team had to keep in-fighting under control. The rivalry between Hamilton and Rosberg almost boiled over in September following a clash at the Belgian Grand Prix. It forced Mercedes executive director Toto Wolff to warn the pair they were driving for their futures.

Despite the heated rivalry it was all ended amicably with Rosberg congratulating Hamilton following his win in Abu Dhabi and Mercedes taking the Constructor's Championship title at a canter.

Looking ahead to 2015

Dates for the 2015 season have already been released with Australia hosting the first race on March 15th. There is a welcome return to Mexico for first time since 1992 while the German Grand Prix will be heading back to the Nurburgring in accordance with the event-sharing agreement between itself and the Hockenheimring.

There will be a number of driver changes. Alongside Sebastian Vettel's move to Ferrari, Max Verstappen, son of former driver Jos Verstappen, will make his Formula 1 debut with Scuderia Toro Rosso. Marcus Ericsson will also be Sauber after departing from the financially-hit Caterham.

Lewis Hamilton will be looking to become the first British driver to win back-to-back championships but will once again face competition from teammate Rosberg.

 

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