• Max Verstappen won his maiden F1 world title, ending Hamilton's winning streak
  • Hamilton was aiming to win a record 8th world title
  • Verstappen overtook Hamilton on the final lap in Abu Dhabi

F1’s newest world champion Max Verstappen has revealed he received a congratulatory text from Mercedes chief Toto Wolff.

Verstappen clinched his maiden world championship after winning a controversial Abu Dhabi Grand Prix amid arguments over the rules after a late-race safety car period that snatched the title from Hamilton's grasp, who had led for the majority of the race.

The Red Bull racer also revealed that Hamilton had come up to him to congratulate him after the race, calling the Brit "a great sportsman in general."

"Toto sent me a text - congratulations on the season and that I deserved to win, that was very nice," Verstappen was quoted by BBC Sport, as saying in an interview.

Verstappen, who became the first-ever F1 world champion from the Netherlands, also said that he understood how much Hamilton would have been hurting.

"Lewis is a great sportsman in general. Of course, it helps if you have already seven titles. That comforts him a bit. I think if it was the other way around, it would have been more painful for me because I didn't have one. Lewis came up to me and congratulated me. It must have been very tough in that last lap. It also shows the respect we have for each other," added Verstappen.

Soon after the race at the Yas Marina Circuit ended, Mercedes had lodged two protests against the way race director Michael Masi conducted the final laps. However, both their protests were rejected by the race stewards.

"Of course we had our tough times through the season but we respect what we're doing and we were pushing each other to the limit and it has been very enjoyable racing against him [Hamilton]," Verstappen said further.

Max Verstappen is the first Dutchman to win the Formula One title
Max Verstappen is the first Dutchman to win the Formula One title POOL via AFP / KAMRAN JEBREILI

Reacting to Mercedes’ claims of had rules been followed correctly, Hamilton would have bagged his record eighth world title, Verstappen said that the controversy did not take away anything off his win.

"I think it's a bit of a part of the whole season - it's been like that already a few times, with protests or whatever. It is what it is. That's racing sometimes. For me, nothing really changed. We were still celebrating and we did win it on track. We didn't do anything wrong. We just raced when there was a green light. That made it enjoyable for us," the 24-year-old Dutchman added.