ABU DHABI GP 29/11/15
Between races, Williams dropped their appeal against Felipe Massa’s exclusion from the Brazilian Grand Prix on account of it having no bearing on their nishing position in the constructors’ championship. Fighting the case would, they said, be an unnecessary expense.
Costs, not for the rst or last time this season, came to the forefront once more as it emerged that both Manor Marussia and Sauber had sought advances on their share of F1’s commercial revenues. Embattled Lotus, meanwhile, found themselves caught in the horse-trading between putative new owners Renault and F1’s commercial rights holders, having to wait once more while their equipment was held at the airport awaiting payment of an overdue bill.
Not everyone was on the same page regarding cost controls, though; the F1 Commission voted against the FIA’s proposed ‘budget engine’. The governing body did manage to assert its authority elsewhere, though, clamping down on loopholes in the aerodynamic rules that might enable the larger teams to use partner teams to aid their own aero development.
Mercedes ended the year in a position of dominance as Nico Rosberg led another one-two ahead of a frustrated Lewis Hamilton, and all eyes quickly turned to 2016 as a 12-hour tyre test got under way on the Tuesday following the grand prix. Pirelli’s capacity to engineer more unpredictability could be the key to other teams building a more regular challenge to Mercedes over the coming season.
Nico Rosberg took a third consecutive victory in Abu Dhabi. Title-wise will it be third time lucky for him in 2016?