Belgium GP

Belgian GP power rankings

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At long last the shackles of summer were cast aside, no more beaches, no more warm evening barbecues—how tedious! Of-course every hot-blooded F1 fan would rather stay inside on a gorgeous summer day (or stay up late on the Australian east-coast). 

Here's our power-rankings from Spa:

Moving on up

  • Sebastian Vettel needed a win to correct the course of his championship, and even though everyone knew that he should have been able to pick off Hamilton as soon as they reached the Kemmel straight, he still needed to pull off the move (and if the SC was called earlier, it might have been even harder to do). 
  • Valtteri Bottas climbed from almost last to P4, which in the 2nd fastest car on the grid is equal parts impressive and predictable. Sure he had a little fender-bender at the start, but if you need to overtake a bunch of cars, Spa is one of the more accomodating tracks, and—continuing a recent trend in F1—carving through the field offered the majority of the race's entertainment. Hopefully Heikki Kulta cracked a few VBs in celebration.
  • Halo came into play at the opening corner, and has been a huge topic of conversation post-race. Responses ranging from "Leclerc probably would have been fine with it" to "IndyCar should be more like F1" have been thrown around, but regardless of what you think of the halo, I'm sure Leclerc felt more comfortable watching the replays and seeing the forcefield-like protection it offered.

Back-sliding

  • Nico Hulkenberg copped his punishment for instigating the carnage at La Source on the chin, but having been rewarded with a new contract at Renault he earned all of the wrong attention. 
  • Brendan Hartley traded blows with Marcus Ericsson for P10 for a handful of laps before finishing in P14. Assuming that he can hold on to his place next year, he'll need to convert more of these races in points and wrestling results away from the likes of Sauber. 
  • Martin Brundle boasted during his track walk that he was doing the post-race interviews, spoiling the surprise that a lot of us like to speculate about. Come on, Marto, not cool. ;p

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Belgium GP: Winners and Losers

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Winners

  • Nico Hulkenberg: Finally another solid result for Renault. It looked like Palmer might have delivered P6 or P7 after running strong in the lead-up, but it was the ever-reliable Hulkenberg who finished just behind the top 5 and grabbed a few more precious points as his team reels in Haas and Toro Rosso.
  • Lewis Hamilton: A familiar name among the winners list, but was pushed by Vettel all race and closed the gap in the championship battle.
  • Mick Schumacher: At the race where his dad made his debut and took his maiden victory, seeing Schumi Jnr doing laps in the old Benetton was exactly what F1 needs right now.

Losers

  • Sergio Perez: For whatever reason Force India just can't keep their drivers off the "losers" list. Whether Ocon should have challenged ahead of Eau Rouge or not, putting your teammate into the wall is inexcusable. 
  • Honda: Failed to deliver their Spec 4 engine "upgrade". No wonder Alonso went back on this claim on Thursday that we wouldn't rant and rave about their lack of performance.
  • Verstappen's reliability: I'd be banning Mark Webber from coming anywhere near the garage and spooking his car if I were him. Ricciardo might be joking when he says he massages his car in a sort of "foreplay", but anything is worth a shot right now.

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