Lewis Hamilton has been crowned Formula One world champion for a fourth time despite a stunning opening-lap collision with rival Sebastian Vettel at the Mexican Grand Prix.
Hamilton finished only eighth following the explosive turn-three incident, after which the British driver asked if Vettel had deliberately crashed into him.
The championship rivals both sustained damage in the collision as Hamilton’s Mercedes limped back to the pit lane with a right-rear puncture while Vettel stopped for repairs to his Ferrari’s broken front wing.
And although a determined Vettel fought back through the field to cross the line in fourth place, he fell well short of the victory he required to prevent Hamilton from winning the title with two rounds to spare.
Max Verstappen, who also banged wheels with Vettel in a frenetic start to Sunday’s race, took advantage of the first-lap mayhem to win from Valtteri Bottas with Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen completing the podium places.