2020 F1 Belgian GP: Different stage same results, Mercedes 1-2 led by Hamiltn
Last weekend’s Formula 1 Belgian Grand Prix at the glorious Spa-Francorchamps saw Defending Champion Lewis Hamilton capture another win to extend his lead in the Drivers’ standings. Team mate Valtteri Bottas came in second, ahead of Max Verstappen who could do no better than third.
Fourth through sixth were two Renaults of Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon who led home Alexander Albon in a second Red Bull. Ricciardo and Ocon took Renault’s best ever result in this shortened season.
The win at Spa was Hamilton’s fifth win of the year and 89th in his career. For Mercedes, it’s their 50th 1-2 finish since 2010. Hamilton’s obviously piling up the points in the standings, now 47 points apart from Verstappen. Mercedes lead by a big 52-point from Red Bull in the Constructors rankings.
The bottom rung of the top ten was filled by Lando Norris, Pierre Gasly, Lance Stroll and Sergio Perez.
Selected Drivers’ quotes:
Hamilton: “The first lap can be a nightmare, because of the huge tow down the big straight, but I managed to keep Valtteri behind me on lap one and from there I had a strong race. Of course, I’d love to be able to win every race wheel to wheel, but today was a different kind of race, it was all about managing the tyres and the gap to the cars behind.”
Verstappen: “On the medium tyre I didn’t have a lot of grip and then on the hard I was initially trying to put pressure on Valtteri but he was told to speed up and was able to build a good gap, so after that it was a bit lonely. There was not much action up front unfortunately and the tyre wear was quite high so we couldn’t really push. I had some vibrations towards the end of the race so I really had to manage my tyres, I took no risks and brought it home.”
Ricciardo: “We had a lot of pace today and fourth is a strong result. It’s been a while since I’ve had the fastest lap of the race, so that was also nice.”
Norris: “I controlled my pace when I had to, knowing that the Racing Points and Renaults were quick when we had a similar tyre life. I knew I might’ve been able to overtake and that’s what I did. One more lap and I could’ve done something to get P6, but I’m still happy with P7.”
Gasly: “The overtaking move on Perez was especially intense but very enjoyable! We knew a safety car between the start of the race and lap 20 would be a killer for us, but unfortunately, that’s what happened and gave the other cars a free pitstop. We didn’t give up because we had a great car, good pace, so I pushed as hard as I could. After our pitstop, we exited almost last and we had to fight back through the field, but I enjoyed it and to recover to P8 was just great! I reckon the safety car cost us a potential P5 today because I think we lost around 20 seconds there and finished seven seconds behind Ocon in P5.”
2020 Belgian GP results
1 Hamilton 1:24:08.761
2 Bottas +8.448s
3 Verstappen +15.455s
4 Ricciardo +18.877s
5 Ocon +40.650s
6 Albon +42.712s8
7 Norris +43.774s
8 Gasly +47.371s
9 Stroll +52.603s
10 Perez +53.179s
1 Hamilton GBR MERCEDES 157
2 Verstappen NED RED BULL RACING HONDA 110
3 Bottas FIN MERCEDES 107
4 Albon THA RED BULL RACING HONDA 48
5 Leclerc MON FERRARI 45
6 Norris GBR MCLAREN RENAULT 45
7 Stroll CAN RACING POINT BWT MERCEDES 42
8 Ricciardo AUS RENAULT 33
9 Perez MEX RACING POINT BWT MERCEDES 33
10 Ocon FRA RENAULT 26