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What Formula 1 will be saying goodbye to in Abu Dhabi

It's the season-finale this weekend with the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with a number of farewells expected throughout the paddock.

Like every other that has gone before, the final race of the 2022 Formula 1 season in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is a time for reflection. A time to think, reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of the campaign coming to a close or perhaps left with the dreams of what might have been had X, Y or Z gone slightly differently. However, for some, they are bidding goodbye to the F1 paddock for what could be the final Grand Prix of their racing career. There are also one or two things from the 2022 season which hopefully won't be a factor going into '23, so RacingNews365.com has rounded everything up ahead of the race weekend in Abu Dhabi.

Farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye

Although our departing drivers breaking into song and channeling their inner children from 1965 classic The Sound of Music, is unlikely, at least four drivers will be biding: "Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen [and] goodbye" to F1 this weekend. The headline act is Sebastian Vettel. 15 years after his full-time debut, Vettel takes his last dance at Yas Marina, 12 years after he won his first world title at the same venue. A career of 53 wins, 57 poles and 122 podiums make Vettel one of the all-time greats with only three drivers having more World Championships. Vettel has reinvented himself in his later years as a fan favourite and goes out as one of the most intriguing and respected voices in the paddock. It will be a poorer place without him. But he has admitted that the voice in his head has been nagging him for ages to quit - and eventually he could not hold back any longer. He is to be replaced at Aston Martin by Fernando Alonso - a decade after two of the biggest names in their era of Grand Prix racing last fought head-to-head for the title. Elsewhere, Nicholas Latifi is also leaving F1 after three seasons. It is unfortunate that the affable Canadian and decent pedaller will only be remembered for one thing during his F1 career, but he has not been able to match Alex Albon or Nyck De Vries at Williams and so his departure is no real shock. As for his replacement, Logan Sargeant is set for promotion from F2 - but the American still needs a few superlicence points over the weekend to secure it.

Ricciardo bows out

Despite having an option for an extra year on his McLaren contract, Daniel Ricciardo has accepted a payoff to leave early. His performances have been far off teammate Lando Norris, with boss Zak Brown believing a change was needed after the Australian slumped further through a difficult 2022 season. In the end, it was probably an act of mercy to release Ricciardo early such is the alarming drop he has experienced this term, although the eight-time race winner is expected to stay around as a reserve driver for Red Bull. Handy you might say given the boiling over of tensions between Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez in recent times. The other driver to be taking what he hopes to be a temporary break is believed to be Mick Schumacher. It is extremely unlikely that he keeps his Haas seat following up-and-down performances this season, with Nico Hulkenberg on the verge of a full-time comeback after a few years out. Schumacher could yet bank a reserve role for next season, but will not be racing in F1 should Hulkenberg take the seat.


Saying goodbye to the team back home at the MTC. 🧡🇬🇧 Thank you, @DanielRicciardo . pic.twitter.com/HX9oygckTN — McLaren (@McLarenF1) November 16, 2022

Hamilton's scourge

Porpoising is hopefully set to become 'that bouncing thing in F1' no more as technical changes are to be introduced for next term. The floor must be raised by 15mm with diffuser changes also in store to firmly eliminate porpoising - although by now most teams are not affected by it. However, for Lewis Hamilton the effects of porpoising could affect the rest of his F1 career. The British driver currently enjoys a unique record of scoring at least one win in every season he has competed in - no other driver has ever done that. Porpoising hid some more of the fundamental issues with the Mercedes W13 - which the team have done great work in remedying. However, those solutions came too late, and with Abu Dhabi not expected to suit the Mercedes package, Hamilton is at threat of losing one of his best records. Oh, and he's also set to lose the 'pole in every season' record as well if he does not start P1 on Sunday.

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