Formula One

F1 returns

Who’s delighted that F1 finally is back from its summer break and raring to go at Spa Francorchamps for the 2017 Belgian Grand Prix?

Sebastian Vettel currently leads the championship from Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas. Can he extend that lead ahead of coming races, which suits Mercedes more?

As usual, there are some things to watch out for over the weekend.

 

Upgrade Time

With upcoming races requiring excellent straight line speed, expect several teams to bring updates that will help improve their speed.

Renault have already announced that they are bringing engine upgrades for here and Monza. Realistically, this update is key if want to avoid losing out to Williams and Toro Rosso in battle for fifth place in Constructors’ championship.

Either way, Belgium often sees new upgrades introduced particularly in Friday practice. The big question is who has used the summer break to maximum effect either side of an enforced two week shutdown?

 

Unpredictable weather

Spa is like Interlagos in that it can be dry at one corner and wet the next.

Luckily Friday is forecast to be dry which is good for trying out any new upgrades. Saturday on other hand looks interesting with a dry morning but rain could arrive during qualifying but is likely to affect the following support races more later on.

Race day is looking like a washout with isolated thunderstorms early on building into a prolonged rain shower by 2:00 local time when race starts. It looks set to stay that way throughout the race itself.

Either way, we could see a mixed up grid and a proper wet race. If so, could this be the turning point in the title battle?

 

Prancing Horses slip up coming?

Since the hybrid era started in 2014, Ferrari are yet to finish on the podium in Belgium.

The highest they have finished in that period was 2014 itself when Kimi Raikkonen finished 4th, after a Mercedes clash saw Hamilton struggle into retirement whilst Nico Rosberg delivered a barnstorming drive to third on podium.

Since then, they struggled in the last two races here with Vettel having a dramatic tyre failure in 2015 on the final lap whilst hunting down Romain Grosjean for third place, being a notable highlight.

 

Now I am going to leave you with links to the ‘Five Things F1 Learned:’ round up from each race so far and the half term report.

 

 

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