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Signs suggest Lewis Hamilton has circuit advantage in final F1 race | Maurice Hamilton

Maurice Hamilton believes that Mercedes are more likely to benefit from the changes made to the track in Abu Dhabi.

Signs suggest Lewis Hamilton h...
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Signs suggest Lewis Hamilton has circuit advantage in final F1 race | Maurice Hamilton

Maurice Hamilton joined Nathan Murphy on Off The Ball on Thursday to discuss Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen.

Out of nowhere, F1 has taken over.

The rivalry between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen has pushed the sport back onto public television.

Both drivers are on 369.5 points entering the final race of the year this weekend. Verstappen won nine races this year whereas Hamilton won seven. That gives the Dutch driver the edge heading to Abu Dhabi. If both drivers crash, Verstappen will win. Hamilton must beat Verstappen, so the onus is on him to win the race outright.

But while Verstappen holds the tiebreaker advantage, Maurice Hamilton believes his namesake Lewis will have the advantage in terms of the track.

"It's interesting to talk about the change to the circuit," Hamilton said.

"Because the word in the paddock seems to be that the changes will actually suit Mercedes rather than Red Bull. They've got rid of some of the stop-start chicanes and added some fast sweeping corners. One of which is slightly banked, so it would appear to be better suited to the Mercedes, which never really went that well in Abu Dhabi."

Having the car that suits the track better is a big deal. In F1, milliseconds turn into opportunities to create distance between two racers. With Hamilton and Verstappen neck-and-neck entering the final race, you can assume that whoever suits the track better will have a significant advantage.

But with that said, we can't assume we know who will suit the track better. Even if it looks like Hamilton will.

"We won't really know until they start running seriously on Thursday. It depends. The track has been resurfaced partly. You don't know how the tires are going to work. It's a normal sort of thing going into a race weekend, with the added complications of the unknowns of the modifications to the track.

"At the moment, the word is it may suit Mercedes and Hamilton. But we've been to races this season where you say that's definitely going to be a Mercedes track and then Red Bull go well. It just changes.

"We won't know until they start running."

Verstappen feels victimized ahead of final race.

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F1 Lewis Hamilton Maurice Hamilton Max Verstappen