Sebastian Vettel will end the year on top of the Castrol Rankings after snatching the Formula 1 World Championship with a victory in Abu Dhabi.
Despite never having headed the F1 points before last Sunday, the Red Bull driver has been on top of the Castrol Rankings for the past 34 weeks, assuring himself of world No. 1 status. He cannot now be caught before the end of the year.
Vettel's victory in Abu Dhabi from pole position increased his advantage over his teammate Mark Webber while Sebastien Loeb, Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton retained their top-five spots.
Loeb, who ended his season with victory at Rally GB, began the weekend with a chance of taking the No. 1 spot, but needed to rely on disaster befalling both Vettel and Webber to do so.
A strong ninth place from Jaime Alguersuari (47) gained the Toro Rosso driver nine spots while Robert Kubica's canny tire strategy ensured a climb of two for the Renault man to 14th.
Losing ground were Kamui Kobayashi, who dropped 10 spots to 62nd, and Kimi Raikkonen (178), who lost both Abu Dhabi GP and Rally GB scores from last year at the same time and replaced them with eighth from this year's Wales-based event.
Carl Edwards (17) won his first NASCAR Sprint Cup race since 2008 at Phoenix and gained three spots. There were no position changes for title chasers Jimmie Johnson (8) and Denny Hamlin (11), who sandwich Dario Franchitti (9) and Kevin Harvick (10) in the Castrol Rankings.
Davide Valsecchi's victory in the final GP2 Series race of the year in Abu Dhabi kept him as the highest-ranked driver from the championship – largely down to his dominant GP2 Asia campaign. The Italian gained three places to move up to 43rd while main series champion Pastor Maldonado made up just one spot to lie 76th after a dismal weekend that was nevertheless better than he managed at Yas Marina last year.
A feature race victory for Sergio Perez (67) gained him five spots while Oliver Turvey (59) was the biggest climber in the top 100 thanks to his maiden pole position and his second place in the feature race.
Mark Winterbottom (111) gained 21 spots after winning a wet/dry V8 Supercar race at Symmons Plains. Craig Lowndes (153) won the other race and climbed 15 spots while a podium finish for Paul Dumbrell (294) – his first for nine years – made the veteran 29 places.
To see the full Castrol Rankings, visit www.castroldriverrankings.com.