Championship clinch scenarios for Lewis Hamilton at Austin

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It’s a near certainty that Lewis Hamilton will secure his third World Championship this weekend at Circuit of The Americas, and second consecutive for Mercedes AMG Petronas.

The maximum points available after this race will be 75 points, 25 apiece for wins at the last three races of the year at Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi. If Hamilton’s gap is 76 or more, he clinches in Austin.

It’s pretty simple as to how Hamilton does it. He needs to outscore new second-place man Sebastian Vettel by nine points (he’s up 66 points on him right now), and Nico Rosberg by just two (up 73 points).

That means Hamilton wins the title with:

  • A win, Vettel third or worse and Rosberg second or worse
  • Second place, Vettel sixth or worse and Rosberg third or worse
  • Third place, Vettel eighth or worse and Rosberg fifth or worse
  • Fourth place, Vettel ninth or worse and Rosberg fifth or worse
  • Fifth place, Vettel 10th or worse and Rosberg sixth or worse

Hamilton needs a top-five finish to clinch and remote as the chances are, even if he finished sixth or worse and Vettel didn’t score points, Vettel would still be mathematically eligible headed to Mexico City next week.

The full points possibilities breakdown of the top three drivers going into Austin is linked below:

Fin. 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
P # Driver Nat. Car Pts 25 18 15 12 10 8 6 4 2 1
1 44 Lewis Hamilton GB Mercedes 302 327 320 317 314 312 310 308 306 304 303
2 5 Sebastian Vettel GER Ferrari 236 261 254 251 248 246 244 242 240 238 237
3 6 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes 229 254 247 244 241 239 237 235 233 231 230