Gary Lineker hailed by SPOTY viewers for F1 dig after Lewis Hamilton controversy

Gary Lineker has been praised for taking a thinly veiled swipe at Formula 1 following the dramatic end to the season which saw Max Verstappen snatch the world championship from Lewis Hamilton at the death.

Ahead of the final Grand Prix of the season in Abu Dhabi, the drivers were literally neck-and-neck and headed into the weekend level on points.

Despite leading for the entire race, Hamilton was overtaken by Verstappen on the final lap following a controversial incident involving a safety car period that allowed the Dutchman to make up an 11 second deficit.

The result sparked controversy across the world, and Lineker made his feelings very clear on the outcome while hosting Sunday night's BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

After highlights of the F1 season were played, the 61-year-old remarked: "That was the most incredible end to a season that had absolutely everything… apart from, possibly, a fair final lap."

Many fans watching at home took to social media to praise the former England international, with one tweeting: "It takes a football pundit to say it how it is. Not like the F1 pundits sitting on the fence. Thanks Gary."

"Fair play to @GaryLineker for saying what a lot of cowards in F1 are not saying. That was an unfair last lap," another posted.

Who deserved to win Sports Personality of the Year? Let us know your view in the comments section below…

"Not often I agree with @GaryLineker but well done and thank you for saying the F1 season had everything…apart from a fair final lap. Bang on and bravo," wrote another.

Despite winning it last year, Hamilton wasn't nominated for the 2021 Sports Personality of the Year award, which went to 19-year-old tennis sensation Emma Raducanu.

The teenager pipped Tom Daley and Adam Peaty to the prize following her remarkable victory in the US Open in September.

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