High rating for Spa & Max voted top

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Brought to you by TJ13 contributor @F1TheaJ

Rate the Race reader score 7.28

Well, you thought this was one of the better races at Spa, scoring far higher than 2013 (4.92), marginally lower than 2014 (7.89) and quite a bit better than 2015 (6.32)

Spa 2014 was rated one of the better races that year: the spat between HAM and ROS intensified and a collision saw their relationship take a turn for the worse as their battle for the lead in the driver standings continued. This spat also led to Ricciardo taking his second win of that season. By 2015 the Mercedes cars had become so dominant that many people had lost interest as the outcome of each race had become ‘a little’ predictable.

Not so this year: the championship leader had taken a 60 place grid penalty and started from P21 and ROS in the other Merc had just managed to scrape pole ahead of the Wonder Kid Max Verstappen in P2 and the two Ferraris in P3 & 4 (Ferrari had used 3 tokens upgrading their engine for this race.)

The start didn’t disappoint: three of the front runners (VES, RAI, VET) collided on the entry to T1 (Le Source) damaging all three cars. Ferrari’s chances of a (double) podium went up in smoke (literally) as RAI’s plank was on fire and had to be extinguished in the pits.

A spectacular crash on L6 by KMag saw the race initially yellow flagged and then red flagged. The crash barriers were so badly damaged by the impact of the Renault it was considered too dangerous for the race to continue before they were properly repaired. Thankfully Kevin walked away with just a sore ankle (Reported fit to race next week in Monza.)

The scrap between RAI and VES didn’t end at T1 (its been ongoing for quite a while) as they came together again on L12 when RAI attempted to overtake VES and was ‘pushed off the track.’

Round three of RAI V VES came on the next lap when a late defensive move by VES at the Top of Eau Rouge saw RAI having to brake from full throttle to avoid rear ending VES. The air turned blue at this point as the censors were not quick enough to delete the expletives. Rai did manage to get ahead of VES and finish in the points before the end of the race.

HAM and ALO had been competing to see who could gain the most grid penalties this weekend and ended up in a dead heat with 60 each. However, ALO got the upper hand by not setting a lap time in qualifying and started behind HAM on the grid. BUT they were both outwitted by Marcus Ericson who, with a cheeky last minute cooling system failure, managed to start the race from the pits.

ALO and HAM managed to stay out of trouble at the start and took advantage of the safety car periods, ending up in P7 and P3 respectively. The same could not be said of ERI as he retired from the race after his 6th gear gave up the ghost.

All in all, a pretty good race.

DRIVER of the Weekend: Max Verstappen 48.71 % of reader vote

For the second year in a row, Max has won this award from our readers. Last year (with 37.7% of the reader vote) we began to see Max’s brilliance as he delivered a spectacular overtake on Fillipe Naser around the outside of Blanchimont, winning not only this award but the F1 ‘action of the year’ award as well.

This is the SIXTH time (out of 13 races) Max has been voted our Driver of the Weekend. It all started to come together for Max during qualifying, when (for the second time this season) he beat team mate Danniel Ricciardo in qualifying. He started from P2, which gave him not only his best qualifying position in his F1 career, buy yet another F1 ‘world record.’ This time he became the youngest ever driver to qualify on the front row of an F1 starting grid. This was even more impressive as he had missed FP3 due to a gear box problem.

I think he can also take the credit for the massive numbers of tickets sold for the GP: all the grandstands had sold out weeks beforehand and a further 9,000 sold after he took P2 in qualifying. The organisers were expecting huge numbers of Belgian and Dutch fans.

The race, however, did not quite go according to plan (see above) and Max finished in P11, just out of the points. (That didn’t stop him being the star of the show, though did it?)

Many people have voiced criticism of Max’s driving in this race, and some even called for him to be black flagged: one reader referred to him as a ‘Pile Driver’ (Device that bashes large blunt instruments into holes that don’t exist.) It would be interesting to hear YOUR opinions……please leave your comments below……………………


29 responses to “High rating for Spa & Max voted top

  1. Of course. From p2 to p11 deserves the driver of the weekend trophy. Yet kimi going from 4th to last to 9th because of Verstappen isn’t worth a trophy

    • Almost correct … Kimi going from 4th to last because of Vettel and Verstappen and to 9th because of Verstappen. Max driver of the weekend is ridiculous. I am not a Lewis fan but he demonstrated greatness again this weekend.

          • Agreed, I would have thought after the red flag when everything was reset and he was in the mid pack,fresh engine,drive train and in the Merc a one two should have been the goal. It’s good to see that the teams have made inroads into the Mercs dominance as even the Honda had a good turn of speed. This weekend made a mockery of the engine rules but that’s the way the cookie crumbles and it was a master stroke for the Merc team I just wish my beloved stable could get their act together so we could have some proper battles.

          • Lewis Driver of the day at Formula1DOTcom … Helped by the red flag yes and so were other drivers. Anyways … respect your opinion.

    • Max VerStopCrashing deserves a trophy for making for making us feel nostalgic about Crashtor Maldonado.

  2. While Max shows some amazing overtakes he shows his immaturity too often. He thinks it’s fine to weave in front of other drivers to punish them for an earlier issue that he considered to be the other drivers fault. Kimi was squeezed by Vettel and had no where to go.
    He needs to be taught not to be so childish. He will make a great driver but needs to grow up a bit.
    He’s great fun to watch but needs to keep his brain in check under pressure.

  3. It would be good if the establishment and all others know the rules.
    Read article 27.6 and 27.7 of the race regulations/rules and you will see Max is not to blame.
    Stick to the facts mr Wolff, mr Lauda and everything Ferrari.

  4. Max is a blessing for f1. Its like the old days again and worth lopking at. So please more brutality and battles on the track and less rules and old (like me) pilotes

  5. Ah well… I can go al chauvenistic but there are a few facts remaining about Mad Max.

    Ya’ll say immature: how old were Michael en Ayrton (just as an example) when they pulled off similar actions? Immature you say? No… Killerinstinct, aggresive and on the edge of regulation: YES !
    But that makes the difference between competitors and (future) world champions / legends. It’s to soon to say that he will be a world champion legend but heck: he’s making a name for him self.

    And you all have to agree: he makes the races intresting again. What else do you want : a parade? You want no more wheel to wheel action and racing on the edge?

    Max did something what F1 needed: shake things up. Make it worth watching again. I used to watch F1 a lot but last years I just watched the start and the finish. Now it’s worth again to watch the entire race.

    You may be against him or praise him but the entertainment level went up BIG. And that you can’t deny…

    Yes: I am dutch but I don’t look through orange glasses: I look though gasoline stained gearhead glasses.
    Yes: I am a fan of Max
    NO: I don’t idoliz him and not all he does it great (for example his start at Spa was rotten and Monaco was a disaster)

  6. For me Max is the revalation of the season. Sinds Max entered F1 it is fun watching it again.
    Max is not to blame, he does exactly wat is being allowed , en the people that have problems with the way he is driving, only can change that of the rules are changed.

  7. May I all remind you, verstappo’s, how you reacted when max planted himself firmly in the backside of grosjean at the Monaco grand prix of 2015? All of you accused grosjean of a dirty and intolerable dangerous manoeuvre, yet now max uses it( multiple times) at a far greater speed( twice as much actually) you all applaud him as being a champion. A hard racer. Someone who does all to win. (Even when he wasn’t even in the points)
    I don’t mind hard racing. I don’t mind wheel to wheel action. I don’t mind someone accidentally going of in a battle. I do hate it when some tries to kill someone in order to get, unjustified, revenge. Which he, himself, admitted to cameras after the race. And may I also remind you that revenge on kimi was the worst thing he could do because Vettel was the one causing the collision in t1. So for this boy to direct his hate at all Ferrari’s he comes by is ludicrous, insane. And should not be tolerated in any way. Because mark my words, if someone wants to retaliate against max in the next grand prix (let’s say kimi) and it goes wrong, all of you will lash out at kimi. Don’t use double standards.

    • I don’t know. I can’t remember all names from commenters on this site. Especially if they only pop up on occasion.

      But for me, I go with the stewards. In spite of non enforcement of double yellows. Yes, sometimes they seem inconsistent but most of the times I feel they’re right.

      And Grosjean got no punishment in Monaco.

      • You’ve got me there. They did not punish him either. So in a way they’re consistent. But it was, on all occasions, extremely dangerous. And I know Motorsport is dangerous, but that doesn’t mean they should make it more dangerous if they can. Remember schumi who tried to squash Rubens against the wall, if I can remember correctly in Hungary, is that the bench Mark? Moving in that way in front of someone. No problem. Doing the same with someone besides you, big problem?

        • It’s hard to set a good rule which makes fighting possible. The root cause is in the cars and DRS. That bloody McLaren innovation came along. And then all the ideas of the Overtaking Workgroup were thrown overboard. So now we’re stuck with Sitting Ducks.

          The Sitting Duck is allowed one move off line and then he can even move back to his racing line. Max waits to see which line he must protect and only then he makes his one move.

        • The real problem here is that it’s sets what is now acceptable. In the past there has been unwritten rules that drivers followed,this has now been thrown out of window. Max has started along this road and now the pack will follow. What I am saying is,watch out Max,what comes around goes around

  8. Could bruznic be more bitter?

    Indeed it was an exciting race despite Rosberg never being challenged. A lot happened tbrough the field and it’s good Magnussen escaped relatively unhurt from such a huge shunt. And what is this I see, tifosi upset with someone not driving a Ferrari? Has this ever happened before?

    Is there a vote for clumsy move of the race? Vettel should win hands down.

    • I don’t think so. I’m as cynical and bitter as I ever will get…
      Furthermore I’ve laid blame at Vettel on all occasions for the t1 manoeuvre. I’m only talking about kemmel.

  9. As much as the editors and readers hate Lewis on this site, they love Max Verstappen. He can do no wrong. DOTW is laughable at best. He’s got talent, but no respect for the cars or the drivers he’s racing against. Even if he’d crashed out this lot would still give him the DOTW… Meanwhile DRIC killed it again, Hamilton and Alonso came from the back, and Hulkenberg/FI came out of nowhere to be competitive in SPA. Silly…

    • As much as the editors and readers hate Max (they love to talk about wunderkind Max), they adore Lewis.

        • Do not assume anything … rather stick with the facts and fact is that everybody loves to vent their opinion (good or bad) about Max. We all love Lewis and Max … that goes without saying 😉

    • Please don’t assume the editors or readers (and writers, in my case) hate Lewis. I have to say, on this occasion I was surprised that Max won DOTW after this w/e. Initially (several hours after the race) when I checked how the vote was going, DOTW was Alonso, so I started writing a piece with ALO as the star of the show. Imagine my surprise when, o/n VES had leaped way ahead of ALO in the vote………. and that’s where he stayed until the poll closed. C’set la vie. The readers have spoken and they voted for Max (on this occasion)

  10. can you imagine if the kemmel straight incident was like what happened in valencia between webber and kovalanien? in spa at at that speed the car would have ended up cartwheeling through the forest or god forbid the spectator stands.

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