Drama In The Desert - Rosberg Crowned Formula One World Champion

Germany's Nico Rosberg celebrated his first Formula One world championship on Sunday after finishing runner-up in a tense Abu Dhabi Grand Prix won by Mercedes team mate Lewis Hamilton.

After all the suspense and expectation, Hamilton chalked up his 10th win of the season, and fourth in a row, but was powerless to do anything about the championship outcome despite making every effort.

His attempt to push Rosberg into the clutches of those behind him, by deliberately slowing the pace in the closing laps to the concern of team bosses, produced a nail-biting finish with the top four separated by just 1.6 seconds.

Rosberg, who had needed only to finish in the top three to be sure of the title, settled into second at the start as Hamilton streaked clear but the Briton's strategy was immediately apparent.

He made little effort to build up a commanding lead, knowing that his only hope of becoming Britain's first four-times champion depended on denying Rosberg clear air and allowing rivals to get close enough to pass.

Rosberg, who becomes his country's third champion after Michael Schumacher and Vettel, held his nerve and position just as he has throughout a season in which he has insisted on taking one race at a time.

As he crossed the line, the son of 1982 title-winner Keke Rosberg let out a whoop of relief and joy as he became only the second son of a world champion, after Britain's Damon Hill, to take the crown.