F1 drivers back Lewis Hamilton amid controversy

Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes walks in the paddock during previews to the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya on May 12, 2016
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F1 drivers past and present leap to the defence of Lewis Hamilton, as the controversy about his 'backing up' tactics in Abu Dhabi continues.

Formula 1 drivers past and present have leapt to the defence of Lewis Hamilton, as the controversy about his 'backing up' tactics in Abu Dhabi continues.

Mercedes are contemplating punishing the triple world champion for ignoring team orders, but 1979 world champion Jody Scheckter said that would be "ridiculous".

"Tactics are a part of racing as much as anything else and it happens in other sports all the time," he said.

Quadruple world champion Alain Prost agreed that although what happened on Sunday was rare for a title finale, Hamilton executed it well.

"In the regulations, there is nothing that says you have to drive as fast as you can. It was not dangerous, like braking in the corners, in fact is was good - it was well done," said Prost told Canal Plus.

"I was afraid that in the last laps we would see something unfair or dirty, but we didn't."

Another former driver who backed Hamilton was Gerhard Berger, even though the famous Austrian actually negotiated Nico Rosberg's new contract earlier this year.

"It was not unfair," he told Tiroler Tageszeitung newspaper. "I would even go further and say that Hamilton was quite fair. He had to play this card, and he could have played it more extremely."

Current Toro Rosso driver Daniil Kvyat told Servus TV: "I would say that every driver would have done something similar, including Nico.

"So no-one should condemn it."

Hamilton's Abu Dhabi win saw him end the championship with 380 points to Rosberg's 385.

Nico Rosberg in action at the Spanish GP on May 14, 2016
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TeamPoints
1Mercedes765
2Red Bull460
3Ferrari398
4Force India173
5Williams-Mercedes138
6McLaren76
7Toro Rosso71
8Haas28
9Renault8
10Sauber2
11Manor1
DriversTeamPoints
1Nico RosbergMercedes385
2Lewis HamiltonMercedes380
3Daniel RicciardoRed Bull256
4Sebastian VettelFerrari212
5Max VerstappenRed Bull204
6Kimi RaikkonenFerrari186
7Sergio PerezForce India101
8Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes85
9Nico HulkenbergForce India72
10Fernando AlonsoMcLaren54
11Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes53
12Carlos SainzToro Rosso46
13Romain GrosjeanHaas28
14Daniil KvyatToro Rosso25
15Jenson ButtonMcLaren21
16Kevin MagnussenRenault7
17Felipe NasrSauber2
18Pascal WehrleinManor1
19Jolyon PalmerRenault1
20Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren1
21Rio HaryantoManor0
22Esteban OconManor0
23Marcus EricssonSauber0
24Esteban GutierrezHaas0