F1 World Champion Nico Rosberg, MERCEDES AMG Petronas won the battle against Lewis Hamilton -
This year, the 2016 Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, was also -
Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, attended on Sunday the Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the final race of the 2016 season, at Yas Marina Circuit.
Other key attendees included for example:
Juan Carlos, Former King of Spain;
Presidents Omar Hassan Ahmed Al Bashir of Sudan;
Rustam Minnikhanov of Tatarstan, Russia;
and Paul Kagame of Rwanda
James Michel, Former President of Seychelles;
Prince Al Waleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz, Saudi royal family
Prince Abdullah ibni Sultan Ahmad Shah, Crown Prince of Pahang, Malaysia;
Prince Andrew, Duke of York, UK;
Viktor Lechenko, Ukraine/Russia, Advisor to President of Belarus,
Present were Sheikh Abdullah bin Nasser bin Khalifa Al Thani, Qatari Prime Minister and Interior Minister;
Ramzan Kadyrov, President of Chechnya;
Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Vice President of Nigeria;
Aleksandar Vucic, Prime Minister of Serbia; and
Masoud Barzani, President of the Iraqi Kurdistan region.
Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai;
Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance;
Sheikh Rashid bin Saud bin Rashid Al Mu'alla, Crown Prince of Umm Al Qaiwain;
Sheikh Mohammed bin Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Crown Prince of Ras al-
Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler's Representative in the Western Region;
Dr. Amal Abdullah Al Qubaisi, Speaker of Federal National Council (FNC);
Sheikh Tahnoun bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, Abu Dhabi Ruler's Representative in the Eastern Region;
Sheikh Surour bin Mohammed Al Nahyan; Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Chairman of Abu Dhabi Executive Council;
Sheikh Nahyan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation;
General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior;
Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs;
Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chief of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court;
Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation;
Sheikh Khalid bin Zayed Al Nahyan Chairman of the Board of Zayed Higher Organisation for Humanitarian Care and Special Needs (ZHO);
Sheikh Khalid bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chairman of the State Security Department;
Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum; Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development and Sheikh Hamdan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan.
Dr. Abdulatif Al Zayani, Bahrain, Secretary General of the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council);
Sayyid Haitham bin Tariq Al Said, Minister of Heritage and Culture in the Sultanate of Oman;
Sayyid Khalid bin Hilal bin Said; Minister of Diwan of Royal Court of Oman;
Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, President of the Qatar Olympic Committee;
Sheikh Isa bin Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa;
Fórmula 1 Interviews -
I think it was an important race for us today: in the final laps, I would have liked to gain two more positions, because the speed was there; but it was difficult to make the move because the car in front also benefited from a tow. Nevertheless as a team we deserve this podium, and I hope it gives some momentum to all of us. It has been a tough year, with lots of up and downs, so I am really happy with this result. About our global performance in 2016, I think we don't need to find any story or invent something. I think we expected more; but after the first half, where we could have scored more points, I think we showed real strength by coming back. In the last couple of Grand Prix we had very good race pace, always enough to match Red Bull, and probably even a bit quicker: but that was not the case on Saturdays, and that made Sundays more difficult. Overall we showed the stamina that the team has. The spirit is unbroken, and I know that we will work hard, because Ferrari deserves to come back. All in all we learned a lot, we made a lot of progress. Today is Nico's day, well done to him. I think you don't win the Championship by luck, and it is a sign of respect to give him this. He is a deserving champion.
This podium finish is a boost to the motivation of the whole team, for the people back home, who have been working so hard since this summer, and for the ones at the track, who never gave up. It's clear that we did not reach the targets we had set for ourselves, yet this last race shows that something is moving in the right direction.
It was not an easy race for me, the car was pretty ok, but I suffered with the tires, to make them last. I was constantly trying to keep the fronts alive. After the start I was in a good position, but I struggled with the first set of Softs: at the end of the stint they kind of came back and improved, but we kept losing places. When Seb came close to me, I knew that he was on a different strategy and I let him go. Obviously it has been quite a tricky year, far from what we want as a team, but lately we have been working well, doing the right things. Now we need to keep working this way and hopefully next year, with the new car, we'll be where we want to be.
REDBULL Racing team
MAX VERSTAPPEN, Finish Position: 4th, Start Position: 6th
“I am very pleased with my result and how that race went. After being last after turn 1, having to fight my way back and doing it all on a one-
DANIEL RICCIARDO, Finish Position: 5th, Start Position: 3rd
“I don’t want to be too down as I’m still fifth. I’m just frustrated in how the strategy played out in the end. We had the supersofts at the start and it was still going pretty well and we tried to make a move on Kimi. For sure it was close but we didn’t pull it off and that really hurt me. I think we should have just gone long and one-
CHRISTIAN HORNER, Team Principal: “Congratulations to Nico Rosberg on becoming a very worthy world champion following an exciting race today in Abu Dhabi. It always looked likely that Lewis was going to drive the slowest possible race should he be in the lead, and that’s exactly what happened. Unfortunately our race took a bit of a knock from the start, firstly with Max when he spun round at the first turn dropping him to the back of the field. Thereafter his recovery was quite phenomenal using the best of the supersoft tyre to make a one-
SAHARA FORCE INDIA
“It was quite a simple and lonely race actually, mainly racing with my teammate because the top six cars were just out of reach. Turn one was quite interesting because I got hit by Max [Verstappen], which damaged the floor of my car and made things a bit more difficult. Fortunately we had the pace to hold position and bring home the result. It’s great to end my time at Force India with a strong result and help the team finish fourth in the championship. Everybody deserves congratulations and big credit for the amazing job this year. I leave this team with lots of happy memories and Force India will always be a part of my life. I’ve learned a huge amount here and they have made me a better racing driver. We’ve grown up together and I’m proud of what we have achieved.”
“I am pleased with my race. I finished where I started and it was a quiet race for most of it, but it got a bit tense in the final laps when I had to fend off Felipe [Massa]. I pushed really hard at the beginning of my stints, trying to close the gap to Nico, but in the end I finished just behind him. It was great to finish the season with some points and to end an incredible year with a good result. Now that the season is over, I will go back to Mexico and enjoy some rest. It’s been a long and intense year and I am looking forward to some downtime with friends and family. They’re going to be happy holidays, thinking about what we have achieved this year. I’ll chill out a bit and then it’s back to work for 2017!”
Robert Fernley, Deputy Team Principal
“To end the season with two cars solidly inside the points and with fourth place in the constructors’ championship feels fantastic. It has been a tremendous year for us and it’s important to pay tribute to each and every member of the team for all their hard work and hours of dedication back at base and at the track. All the effort has paid off and we can now celebrate the best ever year in our history. Both drivers did a super job today, as they have done all year long. It’s great that Nico could end his time with us on a high note and we thank him for everything he has done for us during his five years as a Force India driver. He’s been a big part of our journey up the grid and it has been a pleasure working with him. Credit to Sergio, as well, who becomes the first Force India driver to cross the 100 points in a season milestone. He’s been exceptional this year and fully deserves to finish seventh in the drivers’ championship.”
“The race was good; fun, but difficult as well.
“There wasn’t really much I could do against the Force Indias and the Williams, but I fought until the last lap and got quite close, so I’m happy with the point we scored today, and pleased that we secured our positions in the constructors’ and drivers’ championships.
“Overall, this season has been positive: we’ve shown big progress compared to 2015, but we want to win the world championship – and there’s still a long way to go before we can achieve that. Still, we have a long winter ahead of us, and we’ll make a huge effort in order to arrive in Australia with a more competitive package.
“It’s a shame that Jenson’s final race came to an early end, but he’ll still be around next year, and he’ll be a huge asset for us in his new role.
“Finally, I’m very happy for Nico [Rosberg]. He’s had a fantastic season and he deserved to be champion. He always believed in his possibilities and he managed his advantage perfectly. Both he and Lewis did a great job but it was time for Nico to win this year, as Lewis has three titles already
“A suspension component failed on the car – which very rarely happens to us. I had a failure on the right-
“Nonetheless, I enjoyed today massively.
“My race was short, but I loved everything else. I was really emotional before I got in the car – it was such a special atmosphere to have the whole team and all my friends and family cheer me on my way into the garage. I’m just glad I was wearing my sunglasses at that moment...
“I’m very content with all I’ve achieved in my career. Now, it’s done. I live in the moment, though, and tonight’s going to be a helluva lot of fun!”
“Fernando drove faultlessly to 10th place today, earning us a single world championship point; but, without wishing to detract from yet another strong drive from him, today was all about Jenson as far as we were concerned.
“I’m sad and sorry that his race ended in suspension failure – but, having said that, the minor placing he thereby lost will mean little to him in what I gather from my British colleagues is called the grand scheme of things.
“His McLaren record speaks for itself: eight Grand Prix wins, some of them utterly superb, and seven great years in which he won the hearts of McLaren’s staff and fans alike. On behalf of us all, JB, I salute you.
“Next year, of course, he’ll still be around, assisting us in many ways, but racing our cars will be Fernando, arguably the greatest racing driver in the world today, and Stoffel [Vandoorne], whose potential is almost limitless. If you regard a balance of proven experience and youthful promise as the optimal blend in a Formula 1 driver line-
“As the curtain goes down on 2016, I want to praise Honda for the impressive progress they’ve made during the course of the past season, and I’d like to thank our sponsor-
“And, last but very far from least, I want to pay tribute to our fans, the best in the world. Your faith and loyalty are a constant inspiration to us, and I thank you for your unstinting devotion to the cause encompassed pithily in the well-
“And finally, may I offer the congratulations of all of us to Nico [Rosberg], who crowned a fine season with world championship glory here in Abu Dhabi this evening.
Nico has never driven for McLaren but of course we know him well, having first welcomed him to our paddock motorhome when he was a kid, introduced to us by his famous father Keke, who drove for McLaren 30 years ago. Congrats to them both.”
Williams Martini Racing
Head of Performance Engineering: It was a tough race, as we expected it to be. Unfortunately, Valtteri went out with a rear suspension failure so we will look into that. Felipe drove a really good race in the car that he had and it was a fitting end to his career. Fernando Alonso gambled on a different tyre strategy but Felipe was able to hold him off until the end and finished ninth. It’s not where we really want to be but it was a good job by all the guys.
Thank you to all of the race team for the brilliant job they’ve all done. We know the car pace isn’t quick enough but they’ve never given up, always strived to get more performance and, between them all, they’ve done a really good job.
And of course, thanks to the two drivers.
It’s unfortunate what’s happened today but Valtteri has had a really strong season. We’ve got to deliver him a better car and he will keep pushing himself because there’s a lot more there that we can do together. I’ve known Felipe since he was a child; he’s one of my best mates. He’s not only a great driver with an outstanding career, but a really good human being as well. Then there’s his family, who have supported him throughout his career – I don’t think he ever does a race without one member of his family – and they deserve some credit for that. I wish him all the best for his life in the future.
Well, I’m really proud to have been fighting up to the last lap of the race in the same way I fought in the first lap of my career! I want to say thank you to everyone – everyone who has been with me all the way, racing together. Thank you to the fans and to Williams, who I will keep supporting in the future! Thank you to everyone who has been part of everything I have been through. I have finished my career with my head up, the same way I started my career. I also took a little extra care with the car seeing as it will now be my car – thank you again to Williams for that gift!
It is disappointing to finish the race after only a few laps. When I was running P9, I felt something suddenly break in the rear of the car with the suspension and the car was pretty undriveable after that. We tried to fix it in the garage, but it was not possible so we had to retire. It is a shame to end the season like this, but it does mean that I’m now very much looking forward to next year.
F1 Teams, NAANII Global journalists and friends; http://www.emirates247.com/news/emirates/mohammed-
Fotos: Scurdería Ferrari, Sahara Force India etc., all rights reserved.