Mechanical failure remains a potential key ingredient in this year's title fight.
Nico Rosberg only needs a third place finish to guarantee him the title on Sunday, but unlike other dominant teams from the history of Formula One, Mercedes have been dogged with reliability problems for the last three seasons.
Dino Chiesa, who was Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton's karting boss, feels that a failure of any sort for either driver would ruin a thrilling showdown.
"Nico must withstand enormous pressure, cross his fingers and hope that a third driver, like Verstappen, does not intervene," he told Corriere della Sera newspaper.
"I predict that Hamilton will win the race hands-down on a track he loves," Chiesa said. "A failure? It would be a nightmare," he added.
"So far it has worked out well for Nico, but now he has to cross his fingers."
Former F1 driver Timo Glock, who was famously passed by Hamilton on his way to his first title agrees Rosberg heads to Abu Dhabi with the upper-hand
"He knows he has a car with which he can be second at any time if things go smoothly. In my opinion, he can only lose the title with a technical defect," he told the German broadcaster Sport1.
"Of course Red Bull will be strong, just like Ferrari, but I think Mercedes always has so much in hand to make up for that. The question is how reliable the car is," Glock added.
"In recent races, Mercedes has tried to be on the safe side technically and with the engines, and that's why Red Bull was a bit closer," he said.
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing