Aug 30 (Reuters) - Team by team analysis of Sunday’s Belgian Formula One Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps, round seven of the season (listed in championship order):
MERCEDES (Lewis Hamilton 1, Valtteri Bottas 2)
Hamilton started on pole, led every lap and took his fifth win of the season, 89th of his career and fourth in Belgium. The six-times world champion is now just two wins short of Michael Schumacher’s all-time record. He is 47 points clear of Red Bull’s Verstappen. Hamilton has scored in a record 40 consecutive races and beat Schumacher’s F1 record of 24,244km in the lead. Second was Bottas’ career best result at Spa.
RED BULL (Max Verstappen 3, Alexander Albon 6)
Verstappen chalked up his sixth successive podium finish, equalling his career best run. The Dutch driver stayed second overall after what he said had been a boring day, with tyre management the priority towards the end. Albon started fifth and was passed on the last lap by Ocon.
MCLAREN (Lando Norris 7, Carlos Sainz did not start)
Sainz was unable to start after a power unit failure on the way to the grid. Norris started 10th, lost two positions on the opening lap but fought back to seventh. The points lifted McLaren back up to third.
RACING POINT (Lance Stroll 9, Sergio Perez 10)
Racing Point dropped a place in the standings despite both cars in the points. Stroll finished where he started on the grid, gaining a place at the start but then losing out with tyre degradation. Perez dropped to last after his pitstop, having stayed out when the safety car was deployed in the hope of a late tyre advantage, but fought back into the top 10.
FERRARI (Sebastian Vettel 13, Charles Leclerc 14)
Leclerc gained three places at the start and was eighth on lap two but that proved a false dawn in the 1,000th world championship race for Ferrari engines. It was the second time in seven races that the Italian team had failed to score. No Ferrari-powered cars featured in the top 10 either.
RENAULT (Daniel Ricciardo 4, Esteban Ocon 5)
Ricciardo bagged an extra point for fastest lap, Renault’s first since Robert Kubica in Canada in 2010, while Ocon passed Albon on the last lap. The 23 point haul was their highest since returning as a constructor in 2016. Renault are now just two points behind Ferrari.
ALPHATAURI (Pierre Gasly 8, Daniil Kvyat 11)
Gasly won the fans’ vote for Driver of the Day. The Frenchman started on the hard tyre and made several early overtakes. He stayed out when the safety car was deployed and then had to fight back from the rear after his eventual stop. he reckoned he might have ended up fifth without the safety car. Kvyat was on a different strategy and said he felt he was always in the wrong place at the wrong time.
ALFA ROMEO (Kimi Raikkonen 12, Antonio Giovinazzi retired)
Giovinazzi crashed heavily on lap nine, taking out Russell as well when a wheel broke loose in the impact. The safety car was then deployed due to the debris scattered across the track. Raikkonen was the top Ferrari-powered finisher.
HAAS (Romain Grosjean 15, Kevin Magnussen 17)
Grosjean started 17th, Magnussen 20th. The Dane was 15th at the end of the first lap.
WILLIAMS (Nicholas Latifi 16, George Russell retired)
Russell crashed as he tried to avoid a loose wheel shed from Giovinazzi’s Alfa that had gone into the barriers ahead of him. The crashes left debris strewn across the track and brought out the safety car. Russell was grateful for the halo head protection device. (Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Pritha Sarkar)
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