Formula One’s summer break is finally over and the destination for the next race is Spa-Francorchamps. The Belgian GP has always held a special place in the hearts of nearly every F1 driver because of the challenge that it poses. Lewis Hamilton finally hit the front of the driver’s championship but it is understood that he will be taking an engine penalty for Spa.
This provides a golden opportunity for Nico Rosberg to strike back and get back the championship lead. Red Bull too will be in on the act as will Ferrari.
The Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps is one of the most iconic venues in Formula One. The continuous elevation changes coupled with the changeable weather make this circuit a favorite among the drivers. Heading on a flying lap of the circuit we blast down the start-finish a brake hard for the La Source Hairpin and accelerating towards one of the most famous corners, Eau Rouge.
Only the best and bravest dare keep it flat out through Eau Rouge and Radillion. Firing down the Kemmel straight and hard on the anchors for Les Combes. Then we head into the Bruxelles corner and that sets us up for Pouhon. Getting a good exit from Pouhon, the driver goes into the left-right sequence at Campus and into Stavelot.
Flat out through Courbe Paul Frere and Blanchimont and slam on the brakes again for the Bus Stop chicane and that brings us back to the start-finish straight.
This weekend the Formula One fraternity waves goodbye to Indonesian driver Rio Haryanto and welcomes French driver Esteban Ocon in his place. Hamilton has his work cut out for him because he will drop 10 places wherever he qualifies. In other news, Nico Rosberg and Nico Hulkenberg will be the next drivers to test out the HALO even after the criticism aimed at it.
Mercedes are running away with the championship, Red Bull and Ferrari are hot on their heels with the latter set to introduce major upgrades for Monza later on. Williams have been utterly inconsistent with their performance, Force India have been improving but is it enough?
McLaren seem to be putting their troubles away but despite them not being fast enough to challenge the top 3 teams, the fact remains that they have improved slowly but surely. Toro Rosso had a mighty start to their season but has faltered as the season progressed. Haas F1 too suffered a similar fate. Sauber and Renault have struggled but the former’s fortunes changed financially with new investors.
Manor is also doing it’s best to jump the other 2 and now with Wehrlein and new teammate Ocon, they could improve. This summer break would have been a welcome chance for the teams and drivers to recharge and turn around their season. It is all to play for.
The race will be aired on Star Sports 4 and Star Sports 4 HD (provided they don’t pull off a Ten Sports kind of stunt and earn the wrath of F1 fans). The Qualifying will be aired at 5:30 pm in India on Saturday and the race will be aired at 5:30 on Sunday.