Belgian Grand Prix Preview

One of the most famous corners at Spa-Franchorchamps is Eau Rouge, which will give the new V-6 turbos a challenge this weekend. [Photo courtesy of Red Bull]

Now that the three week break from the formula one season is coming to a close, the next two circuits are a real challenge for most teams as Monza, in Italy, wraps up the European season in two weeks. But first, comes the second quickest circuit and the longest lap on the formula one calendar this weekend at Spa-Franchochamps in Belgium.

This 4.4 mile track used to be at least eight back in the 1960’s and following his near fatal accident in 1966, Jackie Stewart wanted to make this track, among others, safer. But the opinions became more and more and by the early 1980’s, the Belgian Grand Prix was moved to Nivelles, then to Zolder near the town of Hasselt. But at the latter circuit in 1982, Gilles Villeneuve, had a horrific accident that killed the Canadian and changed the opinion of the track. So, the following season, the Grand Prix of Belgium returned to Spa, but this time in a shorter version, which has led to the track being permanent when the country has held its nations national grand prix race.

Many years past has put Spa as sometimes one of the most exciting events of the year with the drivers going 70 percent full out on the track. In addition first lap crashes have happened here more than any other track as Michael Schumacher, David Coulthard and Romain Grosjean have found out.

However, this season has seen new engines where power has gone down in rpm’s, and certain parts of the circuit might be tough to control now that the V-6 turbos now have been put into place. The domination of the Mercedes team under conditions like this high speed circuit, might be difficult for others to catch up to, due to the power of their engines.

The weather can play a lot on this track as well, with many showers that pass through this central part of Europe. Rain can happen at any time here and can start just about as fast as it can stop, so expect anything to happen this weekend as both Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg battle it out again which could and can be a track for very quick cars and unpredictable events.

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