Grand Prix 2022 Belgian Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

The summer break is over, F1 is back. Hooray! The first race back is at Spa. Hooray! A circuit we all think of in terms of its history, the excitement of Hakkinen versus Schumacher, which was 22 years ago. Damon Hill's win for Jordan, which was 24 years ago, and two laps behind the safety car last year, in the pissing rain, as the FIA worked overtime to engineer a championship win for Max Verstappen.

Let's look back at the season so far, to bring ourselves back up to speed on where we are. Ferrari have designed the fastest car, but apparently couldn't organise an orgy in a brothel as far as race strategy is concerned. That, combined with engines that like to lunch themselves, has resulted in a miserly three wins for team leader Charles le Clerc, and one for journey man Carlos Sains jnr.

Mercedes went "big" on the new aero regulations and managed to produce a pig in a poke. Their "zero pod" concept (someone please tell me who comes up with these nonsense names) has resulted in a car which bounces up and down more than Stormy Daniels on a night in with Donald Trump. Even the greatest F1 driver of all time (probably), Lewis Hamilton, has been unable to make the car manage more than a few podium places. Meanwhile, everyone has been getting very excited at George Russell dragging his silver machine (I, just took a ride...) in the top 6 at every race, except at the one he probably wanted to.

Red Bull, as Red Bull do, have worked carefully and diligently to exploit the regulations to their fullest extent (this is not meant in a pejorative way) and at the beginning of the season had a competitive car in which both drivers could challenge for race wins. As they developed the car they discovered a way to make it go faster in the hands of Max Verstappen, so decided that was the best way to go (this is meant in a pejorative way). Max has now won more than half the races this season and looks almost certain to win his second Drivers Championship (or first, depending on your opinion of 2021).

What about the "also rans"? McLaren look to have the fourth best car, but Daniel Ricciardo has lost his mojo and spends most weekends driving round slowly looking for it. Lando Norris continues to impress, in particular (it appears) himself. It's not often an F1 driver seems so self-effacing. With Danny Ric pondering his future Alpine have worked their up to fourth in the team championship. And just as the team seems to be getting it's shit together, to build for the future, that paragon of team harmony, Fernando Alonso, has decided to bugger off to Aston Martin. Presumably after Lawrence Stroll waved a big suitcase of dollars under the Spaniard's nose. If only he knew they were Canadian Dollars.

Old big 'ead started the season blindingly at Alfa Romeo, revitalised after his period as butler to Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes. As the season has progressed his rookie teammate has started to catch him up. Quiet how long Valterri can continue to command a seat in F1 remains to be seen, but then there are worse drivers than him in a Formula one car at the moment. Which leads us to Williams. Just wow, how can a team have fallen so low from the heights they achieved in the 1980's and 90's. One journey man driver and one pay driver, neither of whom look even close to being of a suitable standard to be in an F1 car, and they can't even be bothered to paint the car so it looks like a Williams. The sooner the venture capital company flog it on the better. Either that or cut their loses and put a once great F1 team out of its misery. Perhaps Andretti should take the easy route in to F1 and buy the Grove team.

Time for some bad mouthing of another team, however I shall do no such thing about Haas and Kevin Magnussen. There aren't many positives to come out of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, but this is one. K Mag has been a delight, and his performances have shown just how bad things have got in F1 when a man who you probably wouldn't even trust to drive a taxi can buy a place in a Grand Prix car. Good riddance Nikita Mazepin. The other bloke at Haas really needs to up his game to justify his seat is beyond having a famous surname.

The last two. Alpha Tauri seem to have taken over from Red Bull in attempting to destroy the career of Pierre Gasly. Such a talented driver, such a crap team. I really hope he gets a move to Alpine, or someone else, to revitalise his time in F1. Yuki Tsunoda, however, seems to have found his level. Last, and probably least, Aston Martin. How long can the Stroll family drag this famous car brand down before we all cry "stop now, it's already dead"? Sebastian Vettel deserved better than this for the twilight of his career, Lance Stroll probably doesn't. Hope you enjoy your time in a British Racing green car Fernando!

If you have a subscription to Sky, here are the timings of the coverage. If you don't, look it up yourselves.

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The race is scheduled to take place over 44 laps, 42 more than last year (hopefully), and no sprint race. Hooray!
 
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F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
looking forward to the 1st race since 2020 here. i saying to someone else about spa that it is perfect for F1 because it has everything you'd want in a F1 circuit, a great location. iconic corners, incredible history. although saying this you could put the circuit into a car park & it would be great

F1 has done some stupid things in its history but rumour this could be the final Belgian GP could be very easily be top the lot, as why would anyone who has any knowledge or respect for the sport get rid of this, you dont see Tennis leaving Wimbledon or Grand National leaving Aintree or FA Cup final leaving wembley
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cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
The plot may be a steaming ball of dog toffee but you will do well to find any better footage of F1 cars in action.

The Grand Prix film footage was cut into the genuine GP races from 1966.

Here is the 1966 Belgian GP.

 

Il_leone

World Champion
I meant the run off area I think it's to stop accidents like the one that killed Hubert happening where drivers try and rejoin the track
 

Il_leone

World Champion
Just seen Ant Davison's review of the modified Spa changes made

I)La Source now has gravel to prevent cars running wide and slingshot down to Eau Rouge - there is an escape road to funnel back in more slowly

Ii) Eau Rouge to the left it does not appear as steep and much more run off with the added bonus of a grandstand seeing the cars

Iii) Radillon- more run off on the right

Iv) Malmedy - more gravel and escape road
There are other corners with gravel rather than tarmac escape roads


I think we could in for a classic f1 race where driVers are going to be punished for going just a little bit off line

First corner could be chaos
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
It's looking like Verstappen might be in trouble for a yellow flag infringement. Given that he's starting at the back of the grid already, it's hard to understand how he could be penalised...
 

The Artist.....

Champion Elect
Just seen Ant Davison's review of the modified Spa changes made

I)La Source now has gravel to prevent cars running wide and slingshot down to Eau Rouge - there is an escape road to funnel back in more slowly




I think we could in for a classic f1 race where driVers are going to be punished for going just a little bit off line

First corner could be chaos
La Source will be fun, because we are so used to seeing cars on the first couple of rows of the grid (particularly on the even side of the grid) barrelling into La Source, having a car on the outside, and taking to the tarmac, and then blasting up Eau Rouge and the Kemmel straight.

 

F1Brits_90

Champion Elect
it will. already weird to see the F2 very cautious as nobody wanted to be in gravel

that qualifying, what on earth happened did verstappen find a short cut as he was in a different league to everyone. 8 tenths quicker than everyone. he might be 15th but i would almost have him as favourite to win the race. & Mercedes had a shocker they were losing 6 tenths in just the straight line of the 1st sector. you would have to worry about monza
 

Hamberg

Those who know, they know
Contributor
Mercedes are proper shit.
Good result for Albon though.

Max deservedly is going to smash this season.
 

Il_leone

World Champion
That happens if there us rain and what happens at the start

I don't hear Red Bull claiming about the clamp down of the rules around the flooring now

If anything Williams and Alpine have made the big gains

Mercedes seems to have made no gains what happened?
 
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