After a 'disappointing' qualifying for Sebastian Vettel in which he failed to manage pole position due to a mistake of his own, the four time world champion took the lead at the start and never looked back as he took his seventh straight victory of the season. Nico Rosberg finished on the podium for a second week running while Romain Grosjean slightly missed out of the podium. Fernando Alonso made his way from 10th on the grid to take fifth place.
Here are our top 5 drivers of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Vote for your driver of the day in the poll below.
Sebastian Vettel - 10/10
As Mark Webber correctly said, Sebastian Vettel was on a different planet in Abu Dhabi. The newly crowned world champion passed his teammate at the start of the race and within five seconds since lights went out, it was clear that the game was over. Vettel was out in his own world, giving his rivals no chance to breathe anywhere near his car. Such was his dominance that he didn't lose any positions in the two pit stops he made on lap 14 and 37 respectively. He himself felt he "was flying'' as he took his eleventh victory of the season and 37th of his career by a margin of 30 seconds. If he takes the chequered flag in US and Brazil in similar style, he will equal Michael Schumacher's all time record of most Grand Prix wins in a season.
Nico Rosberg - 9/10
On a poor day for Hamilton, Nico Rosberg showed his skills as he took his second straight podium of the season. The German driver made a good start and passed Mark Webber to take second place. While Rosberg was able to keep Webber at bay in the first stint, the latter came back stronger in the second stint on medium tyres and passed him to relegate the Mercedes drive to third place. Rosberg didn't gave up and pitted on the same lap as the Australian but despite a better pit lane time, his Mercedes W04 had no answer to the astonishing pace of Red Bull RB9.
Romain Grosjean - 8/10
Romain Grosjean was himself disappointed after he couldn't take his fourth straight podium of the season. The Frenchman got a great start from sixth place, passing Nico Hulkenberg and Lewis Hamilton to run fourth at the end of first lap. He then set on a charge on Mark Webber, pitting on the same lap as the 37 year old(lap 8), instead of extending his first stint and possibly doing a one stop strategy.
But it was his second stint which cost him a chance to finish in the top three. While Webber was able to pass one-stopping Adrian Sutil on lap 14, Grosjean had to wait for five laps more to make his way past the Force India driver. In the process, he lost around five seconds and as we said before, a chance to enjoy 'rose water' on the podium.
Fernando Alonso - 8/10
After a disappointing qualifying that left him 10th on the grid(after Raikkonen's penalty), Fernando Alonso left no avenues unexplored as he again showed his race craft to take fifth place in Abu Dhabi. The Spaniard gained two places over Sergio Perez and slow starting Daniel Ricciardo to run eight by the end of lap 1. While he was unable to pass his teammate Felipe Massa on track, a slightly different strategy in which he ran longer in the second stint helped him to get ahead of the Brazilian and attack other drivers on the grid.
As soon as he came out of the tunnel after his final pit stop, he took an aggressive approach, using the kerbs to stay in front of Jean Eric Vergne. Afterwards, on a set of soft tyres, he charged his way through Lewis Hamilton and Paul di Resta to take fifth place.
Paul di Resta - 7/10
With doubts over his future, Paul di Resta made a mark after finishing in sixth place at the Yas Marina Circuit. The key to his race was a long first stint on soft tyres, before putting on the more durable medium tyres and going all the way to the chequered flag. Di Resta has always been good at stopping one time less than his rivals, that coupled with the increased understanding of new tyres by Force India helped him bring a strong haul of points on a poor day for Sauber.