If you're one of the 7.4 million people who were glued to their screens on Sunday to watch Lewis Hamilton narrowly miss out on a record-breaking eighth Formula 1 world championship, then you have a Hampshire firm to thank for the last lap drama.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen overtook the Mercedes driver on the final lap of the race in controversial circumstances, at the very corner that Driven International, a specialist engineering and architecture firm based in Hook, were involved in redesigning.

The track at Yas Marina hosted Sunday's thrilling season finale, but races in the United Arab Emirates have not always been so exciting.

Following feedback from drivers and fans in the aftermath of 2020's race, Driven worked with Mrk1 Consulting to redesign three key parts of the circuit to help try and improve overtaking.

And it seems that their hard work paid off for the new champion - after Verstappen overtook Hamilton at Turn 5 on the final lap, one of the very corners that they were responsible for redesigning.

They removed a chicane and replaced it with a hairpin turn, which also saw a number of other overtakes throughout the 58-lap race.

Driven worked alongside former F1 driver-turned-pundit Karun Chandhok, who was involved in simulator testing of the new track, providing feedback and suggestions on its redesign.

The three key changes across the lap included the introduction of a new hairpin (Turn 5) which replaced a slow chicane sequence, a new fast, banked corner (Turn 9) which was arguably the biggest single change from the previous layout, and four reprofiled corners through the famous hotel sequence of the circuit.

The track was praised by the drivers who had their first taste of the new layout on Friday in the practice sessions before Sunday’s Grand Prix.

Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel said: “It’s a good challenge to have the new circuit layout and it is faster and more exciting to drive.

"I think some of the weaker turns have been replaced with stronger corners, the highlight being the new banked Turn 9.”

His comments were echoed by Hamilton, who said: “I like the track. The changes they’ve made are much more enjoyable, much more flowing.”

And the man himself, 24-year-old Verstappen, also had similar praise, saying: “I think it’s fun to drive, in general faster corners are more fun. Especially also the last sector [hotel].”

Ben Willshire, managing director of Driven International, said: “I am extremely pleased and proud of our entire team. We have worked night and day to deliver the Yas Marina Circuit project since Driven were commissioned in March 2021, and it has been the highlight of my career to have delivered this project."

Chris White, principal civil engineer at Driven International, added: “The design was shaped by the engineering challenges of the site, and we saw our civil engineering work under the microscope of the media and drivers throughout the weekend.

"Receiving such fantastic comments and to have witnessed such an incredible race is the icing on the cake and a credit to our design and construction team.”