At long last, the real Lewis Hamilton has shown up after the mid-season summer break, but it might not be enough to prevent Nico Rosberg picking up a maiden drivers' championship.
A second win in succession on Sunday in Mexico City closed the gap on Rosberg to 19 points, enough to ensure the Championship leader will be slightly nervous going into the final two races of the season, starting in Brazil in a fortnight. However, Rosberg will still win the title if he keeps on finishing second; Hamilton has to rely on a DNF for Rosberg either in Brazil or Abu Dhabi and win one of the races to usurp the leader. It's not outside the realms of possibility; the two Mercedes drivers have clashed already this season and the team has been beset by reliability issues at times throughout the year.
Nonetheless, it seems Rosberg has done enough to secure the Championship, a statement you wouldn't even have considered back in July, when Hamilton looked to have the upper hand in the the pair's battle of wits.
The Mexico Grand Prix this past weekend was nothing short of a procession. Bar opening drama at the first corner, when both Mercedes drivers seemed to take a short cut across the grass (Hamilton's was driver error, Rosberg's the result of a barge by Max Verstappen). A late scrap between the young Verstappen and four-time World Champion Sebastian Vettel added some much needed scandal to F1, the latter furious at the youngster's driving. In fairness, he ahd every right to be aggrieved and was rewarded with a podium place by the steward's in the moments after the race, only to have it taken from him following unsafe defending against Daniel Ricciardo.
The decision-making process amongst F1 stewards really is appalling; Verstappen has got away with fierce defending all season, whilst Vettel gets penalised at the first attempt. THis brewing rivalry is likely to carry on into next season; lets hope Red Bull and Ferrari can produce title-challenging cars to match a potentially superstar rivalry