Motor racing-Formula One world title permutations


FILE PHOTO: Formula One F1 - Qatar Grand Prix - Losail International Circuit, Lusail, Qatar - November 21, 2021 Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull's Max Verstappen during the press conference after the race FIA/Handout via REUTERS

(Reuters) - Max Verstappen can secure his first Formula One world championship at this weekend's Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in Jeddah.

The Red Bull driver has 351.5 points with Mercedes' seven= times world champion Lewis Hamilton eight points adrift on 343.5.

Hamilton has won the last two races, however, and heads into Sunday's race around the streets of Jeddah as favourite to take the title battle down to the wire in Abu Dhabi.

Points are awarded to the top 10 in 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 order with a bonus point for fastest lap.

That leaves a maximum 26 points to be won after this weekend.

VERSTAPPEN CAN BE CHAMPION IN SAUDI ARABIA IF:

He wins with fastest lap and Hamilton is outside the top five.

He wins without the fastest lap and Hamilton finishes outside the top six.

He finishes second with the fastest lap and Hamilton finishes lower than ninth.

He finishes second without the fastest lap and Hamilton fails to score.

If Verstappen finishes lower than second, the battle will stay alive into Abu Dhabi regardless of what Hamilton does.

LEVEL ON POINTS

If Hamilton wins and scores the extra point for fastest lap with Verstappen second, the pair will head into Abu Dhabi level on points but with the Dutchman ahead on account of having won more races (9-8).

HAMILTON WILL TAKE THE LEAD IF:

He scores at least nine points more than Verstappen in Saudi Arabia, which includes victory with Verstappen third.

(Compiled by Abhishek Takle; editing by Ed Osmond)

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