Nico Rosberg of Mercedes won the 2015 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Sunday after a fascinating duel with team-mate Lewis Hamilton in the final race of the season.
The German's quicker switch to soft tyres proved pivotal to the result, as Hamilton reacted slower to the technical change.
Formula One confirmed the race result on social media:
Here are the final world championship standings for the season, confirming Hamilton's place at the summit:
|F1 World Championship: Final Standings|
|7||DANIIL KVYAT||RED BULL RACING||95|
|8||DANIEL RICCIARDO||RED BULL RACING||92|
|9||SERGIO PEREZ||FORCE INDIA||78|
|10||NICO HULKENBERG||FORCE INDIA||52|
Rosberg started his race perfectly as he shot off the line to lead Hamilton, whose Mercedes was immediately put under pressure from an aggressive Kimi Raikkonen.
There was contact between Pastor Maldonado and Fernando Alonso, which ended the former's race prematurely. Alonso damaged his front wing and had to immediately retreat back to the pits for emergency work.
The Daily Mirror's Byron Young called the action of the opening moments, as Alonso was punished for his misdemeanours:
Alonso was given a drive-through penalty as Rosberg maintained his lead over Hamilton through the opening laps. He remained two seconds ahead of the world champion, with Raikkonen a further three seconds down on the Silver Arrows pair.
Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg consistently vied for position, with the Red Bull driver winning their personal battle after they exchanged places.
Valtteri Bottas and Jenson Button also made contact in the pits, as Bottas caught the back of the McLaren as it came into the garage.
Formula One's official Twitter account shared the moment:
Sebastian Vettel battled through the field after his failures in qualifying, and the former world champion was soon in the upper echelons of the leading pack.
However, it was Vettel's team-mate who was putting in one of the performances of the day, as Raikkonen showed an impressive turn of pace in the first half of the race as he rolled back the years.
The Ferrari driver saw his best lap time get beaten only by Hamilton after 23 laps:
Hamilton nibbled at Rosberg's lead through the race, and F1 legend Nigel Mansell promised the world champion would soon attempt an audacious move to usurp the race leader:
Rosberg's switch to soft tyres swung the advantage back his way, and he began to lap more than half-a-second quicker than Hamilton. The lead soon extended to 12 seconds before the Brit changed his tyres and once again began to make inroads on the German.
Formula One highlighted the positions late in the race:
The Brit cut a second off his team-mate per lap, and the race was on to catch the leader in a dramatic final shootout of the season.
Seven laps from the end, Hamilton was 7.7 seconds behind Rosberg, but the German was flying as he tried to hold out on old tyres. However, it was too little, too late for the champion, as he backed off in the final moments, unable to catch the competing Mercedes in front of him.
Rosberg made it three wins in a row, ending the season on a high, as Mercedes once again proved they will be the team to beat next year.
The German claimed he is already prepared for next season's battle, as he collected the winner's trophy on the podium, per F1:
Rosberg proved he can match Hamilton on the track in the final races of the season, but the Brit has not been at his best after becoming a three-time world champion.
Hamilton's team-mate has appeared more motivated than ever in the last weeks of the championship and will once again be the most likely to terminate Mercedes' dominance of the sport.
However, Ferrari will be strong at the advent of the new campaign, and Vettel and Raikkonen have the pedigree and experience to realistically challenge for the world championship in 2016.