Formula 1 re-started after the summer break and everyone was hoping to watch an exciting race in Belgium. The spa is one of my favourite circuits and it didn’t let me down. From the first lap until the last one there were many battles, some of them forced collisions between the drivers some others were some easy overtakes from the faster drivers to the slower ones.
Rosberg took the pole position in Saturday’s qualification session, whilst his team-mate received a grid position penalty and started the race from the last row.
Max Verstappen started the race from the second position, followed by Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel, while his team-mate Daniel Ricciardo qualified fifth.
Lights out and the race starts, Rosberg has a good and clean start, but behind the two Ferraris collided with each other and Kimi Raikkonen damaged Max Verstappen’s front wing. Sebastian Vettel took the outside on the first corner, but he was very close to Kimi Raikkonen who didn’t have any space to turn because Max Verstappen dived in the corner from the grass and trapped Kimi Raikkonen between him and Sebastian Vettel.
Max Verstappen pitted and replaced his damaged front wing, with a fresh one, whilst both Ferraris lost places. Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton started from the last row of the grid and they moved up to fourth and fifth place respectively. Both drivers started the race on the mediums, which allowed them to do a longer stint with the same set of tyres.
On the eighth lap, Kevin Magnussen lost the control of his Renault, at the final part of the famous Eau Rouge, and crashed into the tyre wall. His Renault was destroyed, but Magnussen walked out of the car and he was transferred to the medical centre. Kevin Magnussen said on twitter that he went home with an ankle injury, but he will be fine for the Italian Grand Prix. The race was red-flagged after two laps were all the drivers were behind the Safety Car.
At the re-start, Daniel Ricciardo tried to remain close to the Nico Rosberg, but the German was unmistakable during the race and managed to increase the gap with the Australian. Lewis Hamilton passed Fernando Alonso and on lap 18 and managed to pass Nico Hulkenberg and moved up to the third position. A few laps later, Mercedes called into the pits the Brit champion and switched his tyres with a fresher set, this move gave an advantage to Hamilton over Ricciardo for the second position.
On lap 32, Lewis Hamilton made his final pit-stop, but he couldn’t catch and pass Daniel Ricciardo. Fernando Alonso, with his Honda-powered car, wasn’t able to defence his position from Perez and Vettel, hence he dropped seventh ahead of the two Williams and Kimi Raikkonen.
The Finn suffered a puncture after the collision with Verstappen and Vettel, and during his pit-stop fires created at the body of his Ferrari.
Kimi Raikkonen was frustrated and angry with Max Verstappen, mainly because of Max’s defensive moves when Kimi tried to pass him on the straight.
The Finn said: “If I had not braked, we would have had a massive accident. It will happen sooner or later if this doesn’t change. I am fine with good, hard racing but that is not correct.”
Next race will take place in Monza, where the Tifosi will cheer for the favourite team.
Victor Archakis @FP_Passion