Abu Dhabi GP practice as it happened

Text and video highlights of second practice for the Abu Dhabi GP at Yas Marina, where Sebastian Vettel is fastest.

1 November 2013 Last updated at 15:50

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As it happened

  1. 1500: 

    So there's a familiar name at the top of the timesheets with Sebastian Vettel once again having the better of his rivals.

    Can the newly-crowned champion continue that form into final practice and qualifying tomorrow? Or will his team-mate Mark Webber, Lotus, Mercedes or even Ferrari be able to stop him? You'll have to join me to find out.

    I'll be live from 0930 GMT for third practice with qualifying starting at 1300. Until then, it's good afternoon from me.

  2. 1455: 

    The Red Bulls look very quick in terms of race pace, with Lotus - especially in the form of Kimi Raikkonen - looking like their closest challengers. Here's Andrew Benson's report, with all the analysis from that session. We'll have video highlights up online later today.

  3. 1450: 
    F1 car

    "In total, the overall downforce of a Formula 1 car created by all the various components is in the region of 2,500kg - or the equivalent of a small elephant - which means the tyres really grip the track," says BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson as he explains the physics behind the performance of a Formula 1 car in this brilliant video available on the F1 pages.


    Force India: We lost a bit of time in this session due to an issue on Paul's car, but we still managed to complete our FP2 programme.

  5. 1440: 

    The last time McLaren went through a season without a single podium was back in 1980. The positive news, though, is that the Woking-based team have shown encouraging pace of late and here in Abu Dhabi, both Sergio Perez and Jenson Button look strong. The team's best result is fifth this season, Button achieving the result in China and Perez last time out in India. Can they go two better at Yas Marina this weekend?

  6. 1435: 

    1) Vettel 2) Webber 3) Hamilton 4) Raikkonen 5) Rosberg 6) Perez 7) Button 8) Alonso 9) Hulkenberg 10) Massa 11) Gutierrez

    12) Grosjean 13) Di Resta 14) Maldonado 15) Sutil 16) Ricciardo 17) Vergne 18) Bottas 19) Van der Garde 20) Bianchi 21) Pic 22) Chilton


    Lotus reserve driver and BBC F1 analyst for this session Davide Valsecchi: "Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber will not be easy to beat in qualifying, but Lewis Hamilton will be a threat. The Lotuses can fight for the second row. In the race, hopefully we can see something which is more open."

  8. 1430: 
    Abui Dhabi GP

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel finishes fastest in second practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    Lotus have the bodywork off Grosjean's car. I wouldn't be surprised if Grosjean has had the same right-front brake disc problem again [after it exploded earlier during the session]. The team are trying to hide it [from me] now.

  10. 1422: 

    Lotus' Romain Grosjean's session is over, with eight minutes remaining. The Frenchman has climbed out of his car, with the car put on a trolley before being pushed back into the garage. Lotus reserve driver Davide Valsecchi, who is acting as a BBC 5 live analyst for this session, thinks it could be a reoccurrence of the earlier brake problem.

  11. 1421: 

    Felipe Massa is still bravely pounding round on those soft tyres. The Ferrari driver's times have well and truly dropped off as he clocks up his 18th lap.

  12. 1419: 

    Williams' Valtteri Bottas locks up and runs wide, leaving the door wide open for Kimi Raikkonen. But the Finn then closes the door, as Raikkonen sticks his Lotus up the inside and the pair make contact. Raikkonen could have a broken front wing endplate.

  13. 1416: 

    The floodlights are on full power as night falls in Abu Dhabi. With the large strips of blue run-off, the Yas Marina venue resembles a Scalextric set. It looks spectacular.

  14. 1413: 

    Ferrari's Felipe Massa's race engineer Rob Smedley tell his charge that the Brazilian's pace and degradation on those soft tyres is very good after 15 laps.

  15. 1410: 

    Everyone is out on track apart from Paul Di Resta in the Force India, with most having switched the soft tyres for the medium tyres to get some more long-run mileage.

  16. 1403: 

    We're into long-run territory with Lewis Hamilton and co assessing the degradation on the soft and medium tyres when running a heavy fuel load in preparation for the race.

  17. 1402: 

    Good news for Force India's Paul Di Resta who is back out on track. There was an upright which damaged the front tyre and caused it to fail.

  18. 1401: 

    Giedo Van Der Garde spins his Caterham down at Turn 17, but just stops his car from rolling back into the barriers.

  19. 1400: 

    Four-time world champion Alain Prost on the newly-crowned four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel: "It's fantastic for him, he's 26 years old and already a four-time world champion. I won my first race at 26. I think this is his best season, he was very under control."

  20. 1357: 

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson is down at Lotus and reports that the "right front brake disc has exploded" on Romain Grosjean's car. That's not entirely surprising considering how hard this circuit is on brakes.


    Andrew Priestley: Can't ever see Grosjean being a F1 world champion. Does he have the raw talent and speed? Yes. Does he have the temperament? No.

  22. 1352: 

    As we wait to see how practice unfolds, here's video highlights of first practice, including Sebastian Vettel getting something wrong, shock horror.

  23. 1349: 

    Max Chilton spins his Marussia down at Turn One, but keeps the engine running and continues. Replays then show Romain Grosjean running well off track. "Something broke, something broke," says the Frenchman, who was on his soft tyre run. "OK, box, box."

  24. 1345: 

    Sebastian Vettel is our new leader - no surprise there. The German clocks a 1:41.434, but his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber is just 0.056 seconds adrift. Lewis Hamilton is now third, a further two tenths off the pace.

  25. 1343: 

    Lots of work going on over at Force India as they assess the damage to Paul Di Resta's car. "It doesn't look to hopeful," says BBC Radio 5 live Jennie Gow who is stood outside the garage.

  26. 1338: 

    Mark Webber is the new leader, improve by 1.5 seconds after switching from the medium to the soft tyres. The Red Bull driver is 0.134 seconds ahead of Lewis Hamilton. Sergio Perez is going well, the McLaren currently fifth fastest, 0.467 seconds off the pace.

  27. 1336: 

    It's mighty close at the top as Lewis Hamilton goes quickest with a 1:41.690, 0.036 seconds ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in the Lotus. Nico Rosberg is third, just a few thousandths further back.

  28. 1333: 

    "Something has broken on the car," reports Force India's Paul Di Resta as he goes straight on at Turn Nine. It looks like he's got a front left puncture. Sparks are flying out of the rear as he limps back to the pits.

  29. 1331: 

    That piece of bodywork came off one the Marussia of Max Chilton, with a marshal bravely running out to collect it from the edge of Turn 11. The Marussia mechanics are now working on the front left of the Briton's car.

  30. 1330: 

    Nico Hulkenberg, who missed yesterday's media day with a stomach bug, goes second quickest on his soft tyre run, nearly seven tenths off Kimi Raikkonen's leading pace.

  31. 1327: 

    After a cool-down lap, Kimi Raikkonen improves by another tenth to extend his lead at the top of the charts.

  32. 1326: 

    There's a bit of debris out on track. It looks like a brake duct. Not sure who it belongs to, though, but we'll endeavour to find out.

  33. 1323: 

    Kimi Raikkonen makes an improvement of 1.8 seconds after moving from the medium to the soft. The Finn clocks a 1:41.888, to go quickest, 1.133 seconds ahead of Red Bull's Mark Webber who set his current best on the mediums.

  34. 1320: 

    Medium tyres have been the order of the day so far, but Kimi Raikkonen has just bolted on a set of soft tyres, the faster but less durable of the two compounds.

  35. 1318: 

    Sebastian Vettel makes a tiny mistake in the final sector, his Red Bull skating out onto the run-off as the car struggles for grip in the cooler conditions. The new champion has it all under control next time around, though, and promptly goes quickest with a 1:43.062.

  36. 1315: 

    It's a rare McLaren one-two at the moment, with Sergio Perez leading the way with a 1:43.564, 0.052 seconds ahead of team-mate Jenson Button.

  37. 1311: 
    Davide Valsecchi and James Allen

    Lotus's reserve driver and 2012 GP2 champion Davide Valsecchi has joined James Allen in the BBC Radio 5 live commentary box for this session.

  38. 1308: 

    Talking of Jenson Button, the 2009 world champion, who has always finished in the top four at this circuit, goes quickest with a 1:44.079, 0.28 seconds quicker than anyone else. Kimi Raikkonen is second, with Sergio Perez third.


    McLaren's Jenson Button: "The DRS beep is deafening. The DRS beep is deafening." His engineer replies: "OK Jenson, you can turn it off."

  40. 1306: 

    It's tricky time for day for the drivers to be out on track as the sun is pretty low. Unfortunately, they've not got a sun-visor to flip down, although they'll have special tinted visors to help cope with the glare.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "Ferrari have never been properly competitive at Yas Marina and that does not look likely to change. Fernando Alonso was down in 12th place, 1.2 seconds slower than pace-setter Romain Grosjean's Lotus. Team-mate Felipe Massa was a further 0.7secs back in 17th place. The big problem is traction - the Ferrari looks as bad as any other car coming out of corners. It's going to be another long weekend and tough fight for Alonso as he tries to hang on to second place in the championship to the end of the season."

  42. 1303: 

    Kimi Raikkonen and Max Chilton are among the first to hit the track nice and early. The Finn gets straight down to business and clocks a 1:44.360, with Chilton going second, 10 seconds off the pace.

  43. 1300: 
    GO! GO! GO!

    The wait is over. Second practice is under way!

  44. 1255: 

    We've still got dry and hot conditions at Yas Marina, but temperatures have dropped as we approach 5pm local time. The ambient temperature is 33C, with the track a few degrees higher at 37C.

  45. 1250: 
    Nico Rosberg

    Mercedes' Nico Rosberg is performing his usual trick of kicking a ball around with his trainer before getting in the car for second practice. There are few better ways - and indeed locations - to do a pre-session warm up.


    Chris Buckle: Great to see @RGrosjean doing so well, especially after last season!Shows True Grit. Great effort.

  47. 1245:  
    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra will be up and running at 1255 GMT, with James Allen in the box and Jennie Gow and Gary Anderson down in the pit lane.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "The sun is going down and a golden glow is bathing the Yas Marina circuit as second practice approaches. This session will be much more representative of qualifying and the race, which take place at the same time of day as darkness falls, bringing track temperatures down with it. For Kimi Raikkonen this is a key session. He is using the older, short-wheelbase version of the Lotus, while team-mate Romain Grosjean is still in the long-wheelbase car. Raikkonen asked for the old car to try to find an answer to his recent struggles but he was 0.7 seconds slower than his team-mate in the first session. Lotus will make a call on which car he will use after this second session."

  49. 1240: 

    Can Romain Grosjean repeat the trick in second practice, which starts at 1300 GMT and lasts 90 minutes? Not long until we find out. But what do you think of Grosjean's impressive run of form? Has he got what it takes to win races? Could you even challenge for the world title in years to come? Tweet us using #bbcf1 or text 81111 (UK only).

  50. 1235: 

    The days of being described as a "first-lap nutcase" are long gone for Romain Grosjean as the Frenchman rides the wave of optimism following three sensational drivers in succession. And that rise continued in first practice in Abu Dhabi with the Lotus driver topping the timesheets by 0.192 seconds.

  51. 1230: 

    Hello, I'm back. Time for some more Formula 1 practice on the twists and turns of the Yas Marina Circuit.

  52. 1055: 

    That's all from me for now. Grab yourself a mid-morning coffee and cake and let's reconvene at 1230 GMT for second practice where conditions will be much similar to those we can expect in the race. See you in a bit, folks.

  53. 1050: 

    Well it's nice to see someone other than Sebastian Vettel at the top of the charts for a change with Romain Grosjean - who is currently in the form of his life - topping the times ahead of Lewis Hamilton - who is mega around this Yas Marina track. Will Vettel finally have some real competition for victory on Sunday?

  54. 1045: 

    Here's Andrew Benson's developing first practice report. We'll have video highlights of that session online later on.

  55. 1040: 

    1) Grosjean 2) Hamilton 3) Vettel 4) Webber 5) Rosberg 6) Raikkonen 7) Di Resta 8) Button 9) Maldonado 10) Perez 11) Hulkenberg

    12) Alonso 13) Bottas 14) Calado 15) Gutierrez 16) Vergne 17) Massa 18) Ricciardo 19) Pic 20) Kovalainen 21) Bianchi 22) Gonzalez

  56. 1036: 

    Drivers are now doing practice starts on the grid as they are not possible during session because of the pit lane exit configuration, which sees the exit weave underneath the track.

  57. 1032: 

    Sebastian Vettel makes a rare error as he drives into his pit box. The German gets the entry wrong so brakes heavily and locks up his front tyres. The Red Bull narrowly avoids sliding into one of his mechanics.

  58. 1030: 

    Lotus' Romain Grosjean finishes fastest in first practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

  59. 1029: 

    Romain Grosjean goes quickest in the Lotus, the Frenchman - who has finished third in each of the last three races - clocks a 1:44.241, which is 0.192 seconds faster than Lewis Hamilton in the Mercedes.

  60. 1028: 

    The medium tyres are holding up very well in the heat at the moment, with Sebastian Vettel clocking a time on his 17th lap which is almost as good as laps at the start of the stint. That said, the conditions will be much cooler for second practice, qualifying and the race.

  61. 1026: 

    Ferrari are in no man's land in this session, Felipe Massa is done in 16th, 1.691 seconds off the pace. Team-mate Fernando Alonso is only slightly ahead in 12th.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    There cars next year will be visually different, especially with the nose regulations changing dramatically. I think we'll be getting the ugly car regulations - I like a car to look good. A lot around the new cars will be open to interpretation. There will be a lot of very different concepts - it's going to be a tough year.

  63. 1024: 
    Lewis Hamilton column

    "I have confidence we'll be competitive next year but you never know. Maybe circumstances mean that I never win the world championship again. It could happen in our sport, who knows? A while ago, that would have been a scary thought, but it isn't so much any more..."

    The latest Lewis Hamilton column has arrived, where he focuses on how you measure greatness. Enjoy...

  64. 1020: 

    Britain's James Calado, who is driving Adrian Sutil's Force India in this session, is 14th fastest overall, 1.491 seconds off the pace and six tenths behind team-mate Paul Di Resta. Over at Caterham, Heikki Kovalainen - who is stepping in for Giedo van Der Garde - is 21st, two tenths slower than team-mate Charles Pic and 21st overall.

  65. 1017: 

    This year's world champion Sebastian Vettel goes second, two tenths off the pace with 13 minutes remaining.


    Rian Hoskins: McLaren should look to take Ross Brawn on board first as their technical director with a view to promoting him to team principal.

  67. 1011: 

    Mark Webber has slotted into second, 0.279 seconds off the pace, with Nico Rosberg third, Sebastian Vettel fourth and Kimi Raikkonen fifth. Pastor Maldonado is a strong sixth in the Williams, ahead of Paul Di Resta and Romain Grosjean. Just under 20 minutes to go.

  68. 1002: 

    Lewis Hamilton loves this track. He's been on pole twice and won the race in 2011. The Briton was on course to win last year, too before mechanical gremlins ended his hopes. The Mercedes driver has just gone quickest with a 1:44.462.

  69. 1000: 

    Nico Rosberg goes quickest in the Mercedes with a 1:44.741, 0.125 seconds clear of Sebastian Vettel. Kimi Raikkonen is third, with Lewis Hamilton fourth and Mark Webber fifth.

    Jennie Gow and Max Chilton

    Britain's Max Chilton, talking to BBC 5 live's Jennie Gow: "We're in talks with Marussia, it's just about getting the final bits done. Contracts take a long time, but I hope that it'll be done soon."

    Marussia on Twitter: Our man @maxchilton seeing how many sets of radio cans he can wear in a single session.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "The championship over, focus is switching to 2014, not just for the teams, who have pretty much stopped developing their current cars, but also for the drivers, as they tussle to sort out seats for next season. Sergio Perez has still not been confirmed as a McLaren driver, although it is said to be only a matter of time. But in the midfield there is still mystery.

    "Will Pastor Maldonado or Nico Hulkenberg end up at Lotus alongside Romain Grosjean? If it's not Hulkenberg, will he go to Force India? If he does, who will be dropped, Adrian Sutil or Paul Di Resta? Or will it be both, with the team taking McLaren's promising young driver Kevin Magnussen, or Marussia's Max Chilton? Will Felipe Massa, who said he was not interested in a seat that was not competitive nor in being a 'pay-driver', go as expected to Williams, with £10m+ in sponsorship from Brazil? There is a lot to sort out."

  72. 0957: 

    Brilliant new camera in action this weekend. It's one that rotates 180 degrees and is on Fernando Alonso's Ferrari. Look out for it on our practice highlights videos online or in the qualifying or race highlight shows on BBC One.

    McLaren have a moustache on the nose of their cars in a nod to Movember

    McLaren: Notice anything different about me today? #MOcLaren #Movember

  74. 0952: 

    Uninspiring first efforts from the Red Bull boys. Newly-crowned world champion Sebastian Vettel goes 12th, 1,307 seconds off the pace, with team-mate Mark Webber one place and a few thousandths further back.

  75. 0946: 

    Romain Grosjean sneaks in front of Sergio Perez at the top of the chart, while Nico Rosberg gives his tyres a battering as he gets it all wrong braking for one of the chicane. He locks up his front left heavily and slides onto the kerbs before regaining control and returning to safety of the track.

  76. 0943: 

    Sergio Perez still leads the way, three tenths clear of Romain Grosjean, with Pastor Maldonado in third. No sign of the big guns yet, with Red Bull, Ferrari and Mercedes holding tight in their garages.

  77. 0940: 
    Formula 1 car made of chocolate

    To mark the arrival of the Formula 1 circus in Abu Dhabi, one of the region's top hotels made this - a chocolate F1 car. Yum...

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "Mark Webber's F1 career is winding to a close and the Australian held a reflective, warm news conference on Thursday. Webber will now never be an F1 world champion, falling just short in his one chance in the five-way battle with Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button in 2010. 'Obviously you're measured on championships and things like that,' Webber said.

    "'Do I see myself in the same calibre as some of the single world champions? Of course I do, but I don't have it. But I'm still very proud of what I've achieved. Am I a multiple world champion? Probably not. I still believe it has been a very proud and honest career for myself. We know we didn't pick the easiest year to try to win a title, either. That was a very good battle.' F1 needs realistic, honest men like Webber. He's going to be sorely missed."


    Ash Green: Hulkenberg to get a good result this weekend. A great driver who deserves a great drive. Sad that he might lose out due to money.

  80. 0937: 

    Lotus' Romain Grosjean has to bail out of it down at Turns 11 and 12, taking to the run-off and bumping over the sleeping policemen, but no real harm has been done as he backs out of it. Meanwhile, Jenson Button goes second, 1.7 seconds off the pace. "Wow, we really do not have any grip," he reports over team radio.

  81. 0935: 

    Sergio Perez, who is in the middle of a run of four timed laps, clocks a 1:45.889 to stay top of the charts - which only feature him at the moment. His McLaren team-mate Jenson Button is about to join him on there, though...


    Ryan Hendry: Ross Brawn will be a big loss, look at his record with Benetton, Ferrari and then the Brawn GP team.

  83. 0932: 

    The big news of the week was that Ross Brawn will leave his position as Mercedes team principal at the end of the season after they failed to reach an agreement on a role in which he would have been happy to stay at the team, sources close to Mercedes said.

    Brawn, of course, was the man who masterminded Michael Schumacher's seven world titles at Benetton and Ferrari. He also headed Jenson Button's title-winning 2009 season, entering privately as Brawn GP following Honda's withdrawal from the sport. Mercedes eventually took over the team for 2010.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "The teams and drivers will be working as hard as normal in this first practice session, but whether they learn any big lessons is another matter. It takes place in the hottest part of the day in Abu Dhabi, from 1pm local to 2.30pm, but qualifying and the race take place at sunset, with the track cooling off.

    As Force India's Paul Di Resta says: 'It's probably the most difficult event to get the car set-up right for qualifying and race because you're testing in the sunlight and then when you qualify and race the sun has gone down and the temperature and balance change. You kind of have to ignore some things and predict what you would normally see form a perfect balance, you certainly wouldn't want a perfect balance in qualifying because the car would change too much.'"

  85. 0928: 

    Ah Sergio Perez, I knew I could rely on you to deliver some action. The Mexican, in his silver McLaren which is glistening in the afternoon sunshine, gets us off the mark with a 1:48.525.

  86. 0924: 

    Marussia's Rodolfo Gonzalez has broken the silence, but he dives in the pit before completing a full lap. The wait for a timed lap goes on...

  87. 0920: 

    That would explain why it's all quiet out on track, then....

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "The race is at twilight, so you need all your data from that time of day, when the track temperature is falling throughout. That means that practice one - which is 1pm - is effectively useless, as it's at the hottest time of the day. So it is very difficult for teams to keep up to date with what they need from the car."

    Read more from Gary Anderson in his circuit guide.


    David Tyrrell F1: Whatever team Brawn goes to, if he does, will benefit massively. But it won't mean if he went to Caterham they'd be winning races.

  90. 0910: 

    As usual, installation laps are the order of the day to start with. As it's quiet, why not get in touch? How do you think Ross Brawn's departure from Mercedes will impact the team? Do you think he'll go to another team? And what are your thoughts about this weekend? Who is your tip for victory? Text 81111 (UK only) or tweet #bbcf1.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:
    Sebastian Vettel in India

    "Sebastian Vettel earned himself a reprimand and Red Bull a 25,000 euro fine for celebrating his championship win with doughnuts in India last weekend, and the punishment has caused a bit of controversy. Lewis Hamilton, who went to do some charity work in Calcutta on Monday, did not know about it until he got to Abu Dhabi on Thursday - he described the punishment as 'ridiculous'.

    "Hamilton added: 'At the end of the day this is an entertaining sport and we need to entertain. There was no harm done to anyone. It was so cool to see. As I came in I saw it from the screen. It was really cool, the fans went crazy, I'm sure the people on TV loved it. No-one got hurt, it wasn't dangerous to anyone. So, interesting [decision].'"

  92. 0905: 

    There are a few driver changes for this session only with Britain's James Calado stepping into Adrian Sutil's Force India while Heikki Kovalainen gets a run in the Caterham, with Giedo van der Garde sitting out. Rodolfo Gonzalez replaces Max Chilton in the Marussia.

  93. 0903: 

    It's a beautiful day at Yas Marina, with dry, hot and sunny conditions greeting the drivers. The ambient track temperature is a toasty 34C, with the track up at 45.

  94. 0900: 
    GO! GO! GO!

    First practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is under way!

    Jean Eric Vergne

    Jean-Eric Vergne: My new friend Lisa, loved it! #F1 #ABUGP #AbuDhabiGP

  96. 0855: 

    It's all go, go, go in the BBC Radio 5 live sports extra commentary box with Williams development driver Susie Wolff our analyst for this session. You can listen to her dulcet tones, alongside those of Ben Edwards, by clicking the link at the top right of this page.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    On Twitter: Kimi Raikkonen has turned up. And his manager Steve Robertson has gone for a "chat" with Lotus team boss Eric Boullier. Also, Nico Hulkenberg is fine, after missing yesterday with what was said to be an illness.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "Kimi Raikkonen's decision not to turn up for the Thursday build-up day - for the third time this season - caused a bit of a stir here. Raikkonen was upset by the sweary exchange over the team radio during the race in India when trackside operations director Alan Permane ordered the Finn, struggling on worn-out tyres, to 'get out of the ******* way of team-mate Romain Grosjean in the closing laps.

    "Raikkonen has not yet been paid by Lotus this season and it appears the relationship between driver and team has been going rapidly downhill since he signed for Ferrari in September, and he was not impressed by the way the team spoke to him. Raikkonen had always planned to go back to European between India and Abu Dhabi but sources close to him say he seriously considered not coming here at all, only to decide at the last minute that it was the right thing to do. Sources at Lotus say he just needed a bit of ego-stroking and calming down before things were OK."

  99. 0850: 
    Kimi Raikkonen

    Kimi Raikkonen was the victor in Abu Dhabi last year, securing Lotus' first victory in its current guise. It was also the scene of his famous radio message where the Finn told his team over the radio: "Leave me alone, I know what I'm doing."

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "Sebastian Vettel is a very private man, so it is fitting that his celebrations for winning his fourth world championship in India last weekend have been somewhat muted. The Red Bull driver revealed he 'had a little bit of fun (with the team) in the hotel bar - quite spontaneous' in Delhi on Sunday night - after which he admitted he had 'felt sick' - before spending two 'fairly quiet, not very spectacular' days at home in Switzerland with his girlfriend. That will almost certainly be it until the Red Bull Christmas party in December. For now, the focus is on winning, not partying. There is another record in sight - Alberto Ascari's nine consecutive F1 grand prix wins. If Vettel wins here and at the final two races - an eminently do-able proposition - he will equal it."

  101. 0846: 

    We've got to two practice sessions today, each lasting 90 minutes. The first begins at 0900 GMT, with the second following at 1300. We'll have live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra from five minutes before each session.

  102. 0841: 
    David Coulthard doing 'doughnut' spins on the Burj Al Arab in Dubai

    After Sebastian Vettel's 'doughnut' spins in celebration of his fourth title, former F1 driver and BBC F1 co-commentator David Coulthard has gone one better. The Scot burnt some rubber in a Red Bull on the Burj Al Arab's helipad, which is 210m high and just 24m wide, in Dubai.

  103. 0836: 

    The bad news for Sebastian Vettel's rivals is that while he may have wrapped up the title, the German still has two records to chase before the end of the season - and he'll be intent on getting them.

    Victory in each of the final three races will see him match Michael Schumacher's record of 13 wins in a season and equal the record for consecutive wins in the F1 world championship, set by Italian Alberto Ascari in 1952-53.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson in Abu Dhabi:

    "From the dirty, smelly but beguiling chaos of India, Formula 1 finds itself four days later in the pristine but soulless bubble of Abu Dhabi. A greater contrast it would be hard to find. Where before there were clattery buses and lorries dodging people on bicycles and carts, here Ford Mustangs are police cars and you can lose count of the Ferraris as you amble in the dry, clean heat from hotel to track, untouched by awkward reminders of the inequities of life. Yet all Abu Dhabi's wealth couldn't help the Emirate build a decent Grand Prix track. Yas Marina is stunning, particularly as it winds around and under the spectacular, shimmering eponymous hotel. But it poses little challenge to the drivers, and it's not that easy to overtake on it either, as Fernando Alonso discovered as the drivers' title slipped agonisingly through his fingers here in 2010."

  105. 0833: 
    Yas Marina

    Morning! Welcome to our live coverage of first practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at the spectacular Yas Marina Circuit on Yas Island.

    This circuit has hosted some thrillers since its debut in 2009. Remember the 2010 race, where Sebastian Vettel came out of the bushes to take victory and steal the world title?

    Or what about last year, when Kimi Raikkonen took his first win since returning to the sport with Lotus while Vettel hit a trackside marker board on his way through the field after starting from the pit lane. As a stand alone event, Sunday's race could - and should - be awesome.

  106. 0830: 
    Sebastian Vettel and Adrian Newey

    Meaningless. That's one way to describe the final three races of the season after Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull wrapped up the drivers' and constructors' championships in India last Sunday. That may be true, but a look at the three races left on the calendar - Abu Dhabi, United States and Brazil - and we've still got a recipe for some sensational racing. Honest.

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Formula 1 World Championship 2014

Position Driver Team Pts
1 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes 384
2 Germany N Rosberg Mercedes 317
3 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull 238
4 Finland V Bottas Williams 186
5 Germany S Vettel Red Bull 167
6 Spain F Alonso Ferrari 161
7 Brazil F Massa Williams 134
8 Great Britain J Button McLaren 126
9 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India 96
10 Mexico S Perez Force India 59
11 Denmark K Magnussen McLaren 55
12 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari 55
13 France J Vergne Toro Rosso 22
14 France R Grosjean Lotus 8
15 Russia D Kvyat Toro Rosso 8
16 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus 2
18 Germany A Sutil Sauber 0
20 Mexico E Gutierrez Sauber 0
22 Japan K Kobayashi Caterham 0
23 W Stevens Caterham 0


After 60 of 61 laps
Position Driver Team

Race stopped at 60 laps

1 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes
2 Germany S Vettel Red Bull
3 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull
4 Spain F Alonso Ferrari
5 Brazil F Massa Williams
6 France J Vergne Toro Rosso
7 Mexico S Perez Force India
8 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari
9 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India
10 Denmark K Magnussen McLaren
11 Finland V Bottas Williams
12 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus
13 France R Grosjean Lotus
14 Russia D Kvyat Toro Rosso
15 Sweden M Ericsson Caterham
16 France J Bianchi Marussia
17 Great Britain M Chilton Marussia
18 Great Britain J Button (ret.) McLaren
19 Germany A Sutil (ret.) Sauber
20 Mexico E Gutierrez (ret.) Sauber
21 Germany N Rosberg (ret.) Mercedes
22 Japan K Kobayashi (ret.) Caterham

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