1071st F1 GRAND PRIX | 78th BELGIAN GRAND PRIX | 55th GRAND PRIX AT SPA FRANCORCHAMPS
2021 POLESITTER: MAX VERSTAPPEN | 2021 WINNER: MAX VERSTAPPEN
After the washout that was the 2021 Belgian Grand Prix, Spa-Francorchamps is set to return to racing in 2022 with a slightly revised layout. The 2022 Belgian Grand Prix is set to take place on August 26-28.
Friday 26th August
Free Practice 1 – 2:00pm Local Time/ 1:00pm UK Time
Free Practice 2 – 5:00pm Local Time/ 4:00pm UK Time
Saturday 27th August
Free Practice 3 – 1:00pm Local Time/ 12:00pm UK Time
Qualifying- 4:00pm Local Time/ 3:00pm UK Time
Sunday 28th August
The 2022 Belgian Grand Prix – 3:00pm Local Time/ 2:00pm UK Time
- This weekend marks Pierre Gasly’s 100th Grand Prix start.
- Lando Norris makes his 74th start with McLaren this weekend. It sees him overtake John Watson as the driver to have made the tenth most starts with the McLaren team. After this weekend, David Coulthard will be the only non-champion to have made more starts with the team.
- Fernando Alonso will equal Kimi Raikkonen and Rubens Barrichello as the driver to have made the most entries at the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend. This will be Alonso’s seventeenth appearance at the track. If he starts the race, he will equal Michael Schumacher, Raikkonen and Barrichello as the driver to have made the most starts here.
- Valtteri Bottas celebrates his 33rd birthday on the day of the 2022 Belgian Grand Prix. This will be the 73rd occasion on which a driver has raced on their birthday. Bottas has raced on his birthday once previously, at the 2016 Belgian Grand Prix where he finished eighth. He becomes the seventh driver to race on his birthday on multiple occasions and the fifth to race at the same circuit on his birthday twice.
- Ferrari will equal McLaren’s record tally of eleven pole positions at Circuit de Spa Francorchamps if they take pole for the 2022 Belgian Grand Prix.
WHAT HAS CHANGED AT THE CIRCUIT SINCE F1’S LAST VISIT?
The Spa circuit has undergone a major overhaul over the winter. Among the changes, bumps have been smoothed out, run-off areas have been amended, kerbs have been changed and additional debris fences have been installed.
HOW MANY DRS ZONES WILL THERE BE AT THE BELGIAN GRAND PRIX?
There will be two DRS zones at the 2022 Belgian Grand Prix. The activation zones are located on the Kemmel Straight and on the pit straight.
CIRCUIT DE SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS TRACK GUIDE
Situated in the heart of the Ardennes Forest, the ferocious Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps is one of Formula 1’s legendary tracks. The longest circuit on the calendar, with its own micro-climate and massive elevation changes, means the Belgian Grand Prix is always unpredictable.
Spa-Francorchamps is one of the original racing circuits, as racing moved from city to city races to racing around circuits. The original nine mile circuit linked the towns of Malmedy, Stavelot and Francorchamps in a triangular shaped course. The track, which incorporated public roads, was designed in 1920 by Jules de Thier and Henri Langlois Van Ophem and held its first race soon after. For the first years of its existence, the track held only motorcycle races, until – following the success of the 24 Hours of Le Mans race – Spa held its own day long race for cars.
The first Belgian Grand Prix was held in 1925, and was won by Antonio Ascari, the father of future Formula One World Champion Alberto Ascari. Further Grands Prix were held here from 1930 onwards, with the iconic Radillion and Eau Rouge corners being added to the track in 1939. The 1939 race itself was held in treacherous conditions, and led to the death of Richard Seamen, who crashed out from the lead. The 1939 event was the last held before the onslaught of World War II. The area around the circuit played a role in the war. The Battle of the Bulge, which was the last major German offensive campaign on the Western Front, took place in the Ardennes forest. The battle saw over 20,000 deaths, including around 3,000 civilians.
WHO WILL BE IN THE PRESS CONFERENCE?
The world’s media will have the opportunity to talk to the drivers before practice on Thursday. The drivers appearing in this week’s press conference are:
Zhou Guanyu (Alfa Romeo)
Fernando Alonso (Alpine)
Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
Kevin Magnussen (Haas)
Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri)
Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin)
Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren)
Sergio Pérez (Red Bull)
Nicholas Latifi (Williams)
The media will also be talking to prominent members of Formula 1’s teams on Saturday morning. The team members appearing in the Teams’ Press Conference for this race weekend are: Nikolas Tombazis (FIA), Hywel Thomas (Mercedes), Christian Horner (Red Bull), Otmar Szafnauer (Alpine), Mike Krack (Aston Martin) and Andreas Seidl (Mclaren).
WHO WILL BE THE RACE DIRECTOR?
Niels Wittich will be the race director at the 2022 Belgian Grand Prix.
WHO WILL BE THE DRIVER STEWARD?
Each weekend a former Formula 1 driver, or a driver from another prominent series of motorsport, joins the stewards to help judge any incidents from a drivers’ perspective. The Driver Steward this weekend is Enrique Bernoldi.
The weather forecast for the week ahead at the circuit currently looks like this:
WHICH TYRE COMPOUNDS WILL BE USED?
In 2022, each team will be supplied with the same selection of tyres by Pirelli. Pirelli will supply the C2, C3 and C4 compounds for this race weekend.
WHAT HAPPENED LAST TIME AT THE BELGIAN GRAND PRIX?
A very wet weekend at Spa Francorchamps saw the 2021 Belgian Grand Prix result decided after only a handful of laps behind the Safety Car.
Formula 1 returned from its summer break with the 2021 Belgian Grand Prix weekend. While Kimi Raikkonen crashed on entry to the pit lane in Free Practice 1, Charles Leclerc found the barriers in Free Practice 2. Max Verstappen also brought out the red flags on Friday afternoon with a crash towards the end of the session.
Saturday at the circuit was wet, with drivers acclimatising themselves to the conditions in Free Practice 3. The rain intensified for qualifying, with Lando Norris looking like the driver to beat after topping both Q1 and Q2. However, with conditions worsening, the McLaren driver crashed heavily through Eau Rouge at the start of Q3. After a delay in proceedings, George Russell began to light up the timing screens in the Williams. Russell took provisional pole but his time was beaten in the final seconds by Max Verstappen.
The weather was no better on Sunday when Verstappen and Russell were set to share the front row of the grid. The difficult conditions were highlighted by Sergio Perez crashing on his way to the grid. The race was indefinitely halted and, three hours later, an attempt was made to start the Grand Prix behind the Safety Car. However, the drivers completed only three laps before the race was red flagged and called off. It meant that the drivers were awarded half points, with Verstappen taking victory and Russell recording his maiden podium finish. Lewis Hamilton completed the podium.