In Review

Button raises eyebrows at Hamilton Rosberg showdown

'Clean' remark from German driver prompts a quizzical reaction from Hamilton's former team mate

Ahead of what might be his last race in F1, Jenson Button stole some of the limelight from the two drivers fighting for the title – with a simple raised eyebrow during a press conference.

The McLaren driver's quizzical reaction to a comment from Nico Rosberg about his Mercedes team-mate and championship leader Lewis Hamilton, capured by the BBC, said much about this weekend's showdown between the two drivers.

With 50 points on offer for the winner of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and Rosberg trailling Hamilton by 17 points the German knows that if he wins the race and Hamilton does not finish second then he can take the crown.

However, there is no love lost between the former friends after a series of incidents during the season. During a press conference before the race, Hamilton said there was no need to warn the two drivers over their behaviour on Sunday despite the high stakes. "We are not children, we should know what is wrong and what is right," he said.

Rosberg, though, suggested that the ball was in Hamilton's court when it came to ensuring a fair race. "Lewis can do something to keep it clean, which is drive cleanly himself. So it's not like he can't do anything," said the German.

It was that remark that promoted Button's smirk. Perhaps he was recalling the two major flashpoints between the Mercedes drivers this season: Rosberg's apparent block on Hamilton in Monaco to prevent him taking pole position and then their collision at Spa in Belgium.

The body language between Rosberg and Hamilton was "cold enough to chill the warm desert air", says The Guardian.

Both men are wary of each other, says Daniel Johnson in the Daily Telegraph. "Although the level of acrimony has cooled since their memorable crash in Belgium, there remains a great deal of spice between these two... Both believe the other has been more devious over the course of their rivalry this year."

Hamilton landed the first blow in practice ahead of the race, clocking a lap time 0.133 seconds quicker than his rival's.

Recommended

Can anyone stop Hamilton from winning the 2020 F1 title?
Lewis Hamilton celebrates his win at the 2020 F1 British Grand Prix at Silverstone
In Depth

Can anyone stop Hamilton from winning the 2020 F1 title?

Team GB will make Olympic history with male and female flag bearers
Two-time Olympic gold medallist Andy Murray was Team GB’s flag bearer at Rio 2016
Sports Shorts

Team GB will make Olympic history with male and female flag bearers

F1 2021 season guide
F1 Bahrain Grand Prix
In Focus

F1 2021 season guide

Nagelsmann to join Bayern in record €25m deal for a manager
Julian Nagelsmann will replace Hansi Flick as Bayern head coach
Sports Shorts

Nagelsmann to join Bayern in record €25m deal for a manager

Popular articles

London mayoral race 2021: who will win?
Night Tube Sadiq Khan
In Depth

London mayoral race 2021: who will win?

UK elections: why the results matter and who is tipped to win
Boris Johnson in Hartlepool
Getting to grips with . . .

UK elections: why the results matter and who is tipped to win

Hartlepool by-election polls: all the runners and the favourite to win
Hartlepool by-election
Fact file

Hartlepool by-election polls: all the runners and the favourite to win