Following the United States Grand Prix, Formula One heads south to Mexico for round 19 of the championship.

Here, we take a look at five talking points as the sport’s longest-ever season nears its conclusion.

Win or bust for Lewis

(Eric Gay/AP)

While championship leader Nico Rosberg sang Bon Jovi’s classic Livin’ on a Prayer at Pete’s Piano Bar in Austin on Sunday night, Lewis Hamilton hopped on his private jet and flew east to Tennessee with the sister and three nieces of former girlfriend Nicole Scherzinger before boarding his plane again and heading to Mexico City.

Hamilton, who bounced back from his torrid time in Japan with a commanding display in America, must now carry that form through to a race where he finished second to Rosberg last year.

But for the Briton, 26 points adrift of his Mercedes team-mate, only victory will do this time around as he wrestles to snatch the title out of Rosberg’s grasp.

Like father, like son?

(Tony Gutierrez/AP)

Indeed Rosberg, who was 19 points behind Hamilton during the summer break, can win the championship in Mexico on Sunday.

The German, attempting to emulate his father Keke Rosberg and become only the second son of a Formula One champion to follow in their father’s footsteps (after Graham and Damon Hill), knows a victory will be enough if Hamilton fails to score.

It seems an unlikely scenario, but given Hamilton’s reliability issues this year it is not beyond the realms of possibility. “Of course, to be in a championship battle at the end of the year is awesome, and I’m excited about that, but my approach is to keep it simple,” said Rosberg.

Dennis’ future in doubt

(Ross Land/AP)

McLaren’s long-standing chairman Ron Dennis faces an uncertain future after reportedly being informed that his contract will not be renewed for 2017.

A number of figures have been touted as possible replacements for the 69-year-old, with American businessman Zak Brown, already earmarked by Formula One’s new owners Liberty Media as a potential CEO, the latest contender to be linked to the role.

But Dennis, who has been at McLaren for 40 years, should not be turfed out of the British team, according to Bernie Ecclestone. Ecclestone, F1′s current chief executive, who turns 86 on Friday, said: “If I was going to run a team I’d like to have Ron with me. I think he does a good job. Anyone that chucks him out is stupid.”

Feel the noise

(Eduardo Verdugo/AP)

Mexico made its return to the calendar following a two-decade hiatus last year, and it was a resounding success, as more than 130,000 fans headed there to create the best atmosphere of the season.

“I can honestly say that the reception we got from the Mexican crowd was a feeling like nothing else I’ve ever experienced,” said British driver Jenson Button, a veteran of more than 300 grands prix.

“Every time you drove around the stadium section you could actually feel the roar from the fans from inside the car. It was unbelievable.”

So long, Malaysia?

(Vincent Thian/AP)

While the Mexican Grand Prix attracts one of the biggest crowds of the season, the same cannot be said for Malaysia.

And the race, which has been an ever-present for 17 years, could soon be off the schedule. “If there is no economic value, why should we continue?” the Sepang circuit’s chief executive Razlan Razali said this week.

Malaysian Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin added on Twitter: “I think we should see out our contractual obligation until 2018 then stop. [It] costs too much.”