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F1: Vettel is World Champion

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Going into the final round of the 2010 Formula 1 championship, the focus really was on Fernando Alonso and Mark Webber. It seemed like the battle for the championship would boil down to these two drivers. However, things didn't turn out that way. With Sebastian Vettel on pole, Alonso in third and Webber down in fifth, it wasn't going to be an easy race.

Early on in the race, the first lap in fact, things changed rather drastically. Michael Schumacher and Vitantonio Liuzzi got into a rather scary crash, with the seven-time world champion spinning in front of the field of cars. While some drivers managed to avoid the Mercedes GP, Force India's Liuzzi really had nowhere to go. This resulted in a collision and a Safety Car situation, which set the tone for the rest of the race.


With Alonso and Webber both making pitstops during this period, the two main championship contenders came out in the middle of the field. While Alonso needed a top-four finish to claim a third world championship crown, he had to tail Vitaly Petrov for a major part of the race. The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was effectively scuppered for Ferrari. Meanwhile Vettel wasn't putting a wheel wrong - he was storming ahead of the pack.

After 55 laps at Yas Marina, Sebastian Vettel collected 25 championship points, and managed to take the lead in the standings at the very end of the season. That was enough of course to ensure he was world champion. Vettel's Red Bull Racing team had clinched the contructors' title at the Brazilian GP.

Championship Standings

Driver

1 Sebastian Vettel      256

2 Fernando Alonso      252

3 Mark Webber      242

4 Lewis Hamilton      240

5 Jenson Button      214

Constructor

1 RBR-Renault      498

2 McLaren-Mercedes  454

3 Ferrari      396

4 Mercedes GP      214

5 Renault      163