Two-time world champion Max Verstappen claimed a record-extending 15th win this year with a "sublime" performance for Red Bull in Sunday’s tight and strategic Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The 25-year-old Verstappen dominated from start to finish, but he was unable to assist his Red Bull team-mate, Sergio Perez, in his bid to beat Ferrari's Charles Leclerc and take second place behind him in the drivers’ title championship.
Leclerc, driving with great precision and awareness, made his one-stop strategy succeed by resisting Perez, on fresher tyres after two stops, in the closing laps to confirm Ferrari finished second in the constructors’ contest as he did in the drivers’.
Verstappen’s win was the third in succession in Abu Dhabi and the 35th of his career. His engineer came over the team radio telling the Dutch driver his twilight drive at the Yas Marina circuit had been "sublime".
"It’s incredible to win again here," said the Red Bull driver.
"A 15th win of the season is unbelievable. It's been really enjoyable to work with the whole team and to be able to achieve something like this.
"I know it is going to be hard to replicate something like this, but it is also very good motivation to try and do well again next year."
Leclerc clinched the second spot after "a perfect race".
"I knew the only way to beat ‘Checo’ was with tyre management and strategy, so we had a one-stop and it really worked.
“I really hope next year we can do a step forward in the championship. Compared to last season we're there so now we’ll push on in the winter break to catch Red Bull," said the man from Monaco.