One of the world’s best tracks was the setting for an exciting race in which the British driver led from close to the start. Hamilton benefited from rival Mark Webber‘s technical problems on pole and moved into an early lead on the first bend La Source of the Spa Francorchamps ring. Webber finished second and Robert Kubica driving for Renault was third.
The rain, which had been expected, created the conditions for a tough and intriguing completion that forced teams to change tyres from slicks to intermediates to deal with a track that was dry in parts but wet on others. Following several accidents the safety car was brought out three times with the last occasion only three laps before the end of the race thus shunting together the pack of cars that had been spread out previously. Hamilton then had to nervelessly on a slippery track then bring his McLaren home. Earlier he slid off the track and was an inch away from the rubber safety barrier and the end of his race.
The British driver was extemely happy as the Belgian Grand Prix is one of the few “classic” races he has not won yet. Monza another waits for him in two weeks time and is now in his sites. “I’m ecstatic, it was a great weekend,” said Hamilton.
McLaren’s other driver Jensen Button‘s race came to an end early when Sebastian Vettel in his Red Bull mistimed a braking manoeuvre and smashed into the current Formula 1 champion’s car. Button like Vettel then failed to score any championship points.
“I don’t know why he did that – he just banged into me and it is a massive blow to the championship. I’m really disappointed,” said Button.
Other drivers who did not complete included Ruben’s Barrichello racing in his 300th race and twice Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso.
Michael Schumacher made some amends for his awful shunt into the Brazilian’s car at Hungary last month by driving deftly and ending in a creditable sixth position from a start of 21st on the grid.