Having scored a landmark win for 'justice' off the circuit, Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa ensured Ferrari would also be victorious at what they do best in the same week with a crushing 1-2 result in the Belgian Grand Prix.

A somewhat uneventful race that proved to be the polar opposite of what has occurred behind closed doors over the past few days, Raikkonen's lights-to-flag win keeps him in the title reckoning after Massa pinched valuable points in second and Alonso got the better of Hamilton in third and fourth.

Celebrating his victory with a series of donuts, much to the delight of the ever faithful Spa-Francorchamps fans that returned to the circuit after a year on the sidelines, the victory signals Raikkonen's fourth of the season and his third consecutive one in Belgium.

Although already something of a foregone conclusion when McLaren were stripped of their points, the 1-2 also puts Ferrari out of reach of BMW in the constructors' standings to guarantee that the Scuderia will come away with at least one title this year.

Indeed, while both Alonso and Hamilton went into the race confident they could keep up with Ferrari with fuel on board, both quickly realised how much of a difference seven days can make as they found themselves on the receiving end of a dominant display by Ferrari, the start their only chance to keep their rivals honest.

While the revised start-finish straight has widened the La Source hairpin, it was no less crowded heading into the infamous first bend and it was here where Alonso and Hamilton had their best chance to usurp Ferrari. However, save for a feigned look into the corner by the reigning champion, Raikkonen and Massa emerged 'as you were'.

With the Ferrari out of reach, Alonso and Hamilton instead turned their attention to one another as they shuffled out of the corner, the latter using his fearless braking technique to draw alongside his team-mate but rather robustly being forced across the turf and onto the run-off area.

Losing none of the momentum, Hamilton kept his foot down and returned to the circuit alongside Alonso, the two side-by-side, barely an inch apart as they rose up Eau Rouge and probably causing a few breathless moments from an already exasperated Ron Dennis.

Nonetheless, Alonso held sway and forced Hamilton to lift to gain a brief psychological advantage, only to realise Raikkonen and Massa had already pulled a nice margin as they surged down to Les Combes.

Just behind, Nico Rosberg held onto his grid position in fifth, with Heikki Kovalainen getting a masterful start to jump from ninth to sixth, Mark Webber seventh and Nick Heidfeld eighth, the German having embarked on some rather ambitious braking into the first corner and running wide as a result.

If Kovalainen's strong start brought some smiles to the faces at Renault then Giancarlo Fisichella pulling into the pit lane after just one revolution will have brought them back down to earth, the Italian's dismal weekend ending with suspension problems on the spare car he was forced to take when his race machine developed an engine problem.

With status quo at the front, Raikkonen began to place some air between himself and Massa, with Alonso and Hamilton slipping back, while Rosberg attempted, somewhat in vain, to tag onto the back of the McLaren's over the first few laps.

Having hinted as much after qualifying, it was evident Kovalainen's good start had flattered to deceive and he was quickly struggling with his heavy fuel load, prompting Webber and Heidfeld to crawl over the back of the Renault in the early laps. With so much more straight line speed than the weighed down R27, Webber got the run on him up to Les Combes and simply surged around the outside of him on lap three.

Four laps later and Heidfeld was also past, the German proving the re-profiled Bus Stop can still serve up some neat overtaking opportunities by hauling himself up to seventh.

The second BMW of Robert Kubica meanwhile was also on the move as he attempted to recover from his ten place grid penalty, the Pole already up to ninth from 14th on the grid by the seventh lap.

However, with strategy between those making two stops and others making one defining the order from fifth backwards, there was plenty of racing to be seen between those with heavy cars and their lighter, friskier rivals.

Most notable of these was Adrian Sutil in the Spyker who, having started 19th following the team's best qualifying performance of the season, was taking his distinctive orange machine up the order a furious rate of knots, passing the likes of Alex Wurz, Takuma Sato, Rubens Barrichello and Jarno Trulli on the way to run as a high of 12th place. Whilst much of this was down to a relatively light fuel load, the German's first stint was still longer than some behind, although he would be left to rue losing a wealth of time behind David Coulthard, the Scot having to use all his experience to keep the eager youngster in his mirrors.

Up at the front, Raikkonen was adding tenths to his gap over Massa, who in turn was putting seconds over Alonso and Hamilton, the McLarens settling into a somewhat laboured pace and already resigned to the inevitable as the first round of pit stops started. In line with the grid positions, Raikkonen pitted first, together with Alonso, before Massa and Hamilton took on fuel and tyres just a lap later, all four resuming racing barely altered from their original positions.

The tussle behind was more intense, Rosberg and Webber, the latter having closed on the former, pitting together on lap 13, while the flying Kubica was also soon in for his stop having finally disposed of Kovalainen on lap 11 with a supremely timed move at the Bus Stop.

With the advantage between those stopping once and those stopping twice yet to be established, Kovalainen and Ralf Schumacher gave a clue to how their afternoon would pan out when they finally pitted at the mid-way point of the race and emerged in ninth and tenth, just behind those needing to stop for a second time.

One person who would not be able to capitalise on this however would be Coulthard, who went longer than any driver in the race in one stint, the Scot pitting on lap 26 but going just five laps longer before pulling off the circuit with hydraulic issues.

He joined fellow retirees Fisichella and Sebastian Vettel, who stopped after just eight laps in his Toro Rosso. The list would later gain Alex Wurz on lap 34, mechanical issues ending an otherwise dismal race that saw the Austrian experience several off-track moments, while hydraulic problems would also claim Jenson Button's Honda two laps later too.

The 'battle' up the front gained a little more intensity as the top four diversified into slightly different strategies during the second round of pit stops, Raikkonen again coming in first, with Massa following just a lap behind.

Alonso managed to go a lap longer, but Hamilton pulled himself into second place briefly as he attempted to make a heavier fuel strategy work for him, but once he finally entered the pit lane it still left him a comfortable distance behind the Spaniard.

It was a top four that would remain steady right to the chequered flag, only Massa deciding to put the hammer down in the final few revolutions to at least score the fastest lap of the race, the Brazilian even get the gap ahead down to less than two seconds briefly. It was nothing to bother Raikkonen though, who eased over the line to secure a win that places him a fair, but not impossible, 13 points behind Hamilton with 30 points still up for grabs. Massa on the other hand is now 20 points adrift and potentially now set to switch roles to aid his team-mate.

Alonso and Hamilton coasted home a distant third and fourth, Hamilton thanking the powers that be for altering the Pouhon gravel trap into a run off area when he got out of shape with just three laps remaining.

Nonetheless, fourth sees Hamilton lose another point in his advantage over Alonso, the duo now just two points adrift from one another.

With the top four all reaching the finish line, Heidfeld had to be content with another fifth place finish after a sterling recovery from his disappointing start, the German's longer fuel strategy eventually seeing him overhaul long-time fifth place holder Rosberg midway through the race.

It meant Rosberg would score his third sixth place finish in a row to take him above Williams team-mate Wurz in the standings to ninth. At the same time though, he will no doubt be frustrated to see a maiden top five result go wanting, as it did in Monza, thanks to a BMW once again.

Webber kept Rosberg honest in the closing stages to take a relatively anonymous seventh place. Still, given the trouble and turmoil of his season so far, the Australian will likely be more than happy to record a lonely but nonetheless profitable two points for himself and Red Bull.

The final points place meanwhile went to Kovalainen, the Finn not quite able to make his one-stop strategy work as well as he had perhaps hoped, but doing enough to hold off Kubica for the second time in the race during the closing stages. Indeed the duo were separated by no more than a second in the final ten laps and although the Pole tried everything he could to drive his way around him right up to the final corner, Kovalainen was able to hold on to maintain his run of points finishes.

There were no points Schumacher and Trulli in 10th and 11th as Toyota no doubt become increasingly frustrated at not being able to capitalise on the qualifying performance that had placed them eighth and tenth on the grid. Just behind Liuzzi was a happy 12th in what is his best result of the season.

Star of the early half of the race, Sutil, eventually brought the car home 14th, the youngster blotting his copybook when he made a mistake at Les Combes that ultimately cost him the chance to challenge Trulli further up the field. Nonetheless, the Dutch team will be hugely encouraged to see one of their cars ahead of Super Aguri at least, Takuma Sato and Anthony Davidson finishing a disappointing 15th and 16th, while Sakon Yamamoto brought up the rear in 17th.

With the European season over, the Formula 1 circus now heads East to Japan and a first visit in several decades to the Fuji circuit, one that only the Toyota team have experience of.

With a potential level playing field at a crucial stage in the season, it remains to be seen who will have the advantage, but with the gloves off between Hamilton and Alonso, and Raikkonen potentially doing enough now to ensure Massa will be charged with helping him win the title, the Championship is still very much yet to be decided - on the track, at least....