F1 2016 driver ratings: Nico Rosberg and Max Verstappen lead the way as Lewis Hamilton's loss of focus costs him dear

Man-for-man marking from the 2016 Formula One season after Nico Rosberg secures his maiden title at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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The Independent Online

The 2016 Formula One season came to a thrilling close in Abu Dhabi as Nico Rosberg won his first world championship after finally getting the better of his long-time rival and teammate Lewis Hamilton, despite the outgoing champion winning a fourth consecutive Grand prix.

In the end, the pair were separated by just five points and, had things played out differently in one or two races, it could have been a hugely different story. Hamilton outscored Rosberg 10 wins to nine, but the German was more consistent as he avoided the reliability troubles that hit Hamilton throughout the season, made the better starts and rarely missed out on the podium even when things weren't going his way.

Hamilton fought back from a 43-point deficit to lead the championship by 19 points at the summer break, but he was guilty of losing his focus as the second half of the campaign kicked off and a devastating engine failure while leading the Malaysian Grand Prix ultimately cost him dear.

Away from the Mercedes duo, both Red Bul drivers secured popular victories, with star of the season Max Verstappen producing a stunning display to win the Spanish Grand Prix in his first weekend after moving up from the Toro Rosso side to replace Daniil Kvyat - dropped for repeated clashes with Sebastian Vettel. The win for Verstappen came at the cost of his teammate, Daniel Ricciardo, who was robbed of wins in Barcelona and Monte Carlo, but his time would come when he capitalised on Hamilton's misfortune to triumph in Malaysia.

This weekend's Grand Prix brought to an end a rollercoaster season that went right down to the final lap of the final race.

With that in mind, click on our gallery above to see how the drivers ranked this season.

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