Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes – 9

Mercedes never expected to be quick at Spa, so for Lewis Hamilton to come within a second of victory was hugely impressive. Almost beat Sebastian Vettel in qualifying before piling on enough pressure to beat him in the race, managing his tyres well before the late charge to try and catch Charles Leclerc at the front.

Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes – 7

Valtteri Bottas said this had been one of his best displays at Spa, and, while decent, it was nothing hugely spectacular. The Finn trailed Hamilton in qualifying and never looked like hassling the front two in the race, prompting him to turn down his engine and enjoy a “Sunday drive” to third place. Decent points, even if he lost more ground to his teammate in the title race.

Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari – 7

Has the power shifted away from Vettel at Ferrari? Despite being outqualified by Leclerc for the sixth time in a row, the more concerning stat was the 0.7-second difference between the pair. Lock-ups at the start and restart meant Leclerc never came under pressure, with Vettel’s Friday tyre degradation struggles then emerging again in the race to force him into a two-stop strategy that left him a disappointing P4 on a day Ferrari should have scored a one-two.

Charles Leclerc, Ferrari – 10

A simply perfect display all weekend long from Charles Leclerc. He topped FP2, FP3, Q1, Q2, Q3, and the race, exorcising the ghosts of Bahrain and Austria to hold firm and take an emotional maiden grand prix victory. Leclerc stayed cool under pressure at the finish as Hamilton closed in, and avoided the same kind of dramatic tyre drop-off that Vettel suffered. The first of many wins to follow.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull – 5

Red Bull was never in the hunt for victory at Spa, but Max Verstappen nevertheless threw away a good chance to pick up some points with his first-corner clash with Kimi Raikkonen. His ambitious attempt to throw the car up the inside at La Source was never going to work, leaving him with a broken track rod on the front-left wheel. Verstappen kept his foot in though, ultimately going straight on at Eau Rouge and crashing out of the race for his first DNF since Hungary 2018.

Alexander Albon, Red Bull – 8

Thrown in at the deep end after his summer break promotion, Alexander Albon made a good impression in his first outing for Red Bull. Starting P17 after power unit penalties, Albon managed his tyres well on a Medium-Soft strategy before a late surge up the order, passing Lance Stroll, Pierre Gasly, Romain Grosjean, Daniel Ricciardo, Daniil Kvyat and Sergio Perez en route to fifth place. A very good way to start life with Red Bull.

Daniel Ricciardo, Renault – 6

Ricciardo qualified an impressive sixth at Spa before dropping back due to his power unit penalty, but any real hopes of points were dashed at Turn 1 when he was hit from behind, leaving his car with floor damage. Ricciardo pitted under the Safety Car and went all the way to the end on Mediums, only for his tyres to fade drastically in the closing stages and leave him P14 at the finish.

Nico Hulkenberg, Renault – 7

Hulkenberg was one of the few drivers to make a two-stop strategy work for points, albeit aided by the late failures for Lando Norris and Antonio Giovinazzi. Hulkenberg lost places at the start avoiding the melee, but kept his head through the middle stint of the race to set himself up for a late charge on Softs after a second stop. Hulkenberg got the jump on both Stroll and Romain Grosjean before rising up to eighth at the finish, marking a decent points return on a tough day for Renault.

Kevin Magnussen, Haas – 5

Another tough weekend for Haas that leaves more questions than answers. Magnussen made Q3, qualifying P10, and ran seventh early on before the world and his wife queued up to pass the Dane. Severe tyre struggles left him running well off the pace, so much so that Sergio Perez was able to overtake Magnussen, pull ahead, pit and then pass Magnussen again in the space of eight laps. P12 was really all Magnussen could have wished for on a hard day.

Romain Grosjean, Haas – 6

Romain Grosjean’s impressive qualifying form continued, and unlike Magnussen, he was able to hold position in sixth throughout the opening stint of the race. But once he moved onto the Mediums, he suffered a similar pace drop-off to his teammate, fading from P8 to P13 in the final 15 laps. Grosjean requested to retire the car late on, so bad were his struggles.

Carlos Sainz, McLaren – 5

A tricky weekend to score for Carlos Sainz. McLaren always expected to struggle at Spa, albeit not as much as being 17th in qualifying. Sainz then had a power issue that compromised his start, ultimately forcing him to retire in the opening stages.

Lando Norris, McLaren – 10

If the Belgian Grand Prix ran to 43 laps, this would have been an outstanding result for Lando Norris. He may have only qualified 12th, but made a rocket start to rise to fifth on the opening lap. He held station throughout the race, gapping the midfield superbly, only for an engine issue on the penultimate lap to rob him of a fifth-place that would have been his best result in F1. He still gets a 10 from us though.

Sergio Perez, Racing Point – 8

Racing Point has a knack for doing well at Spa. Sergio Perez kept up the tradition with his first points since Baku, claimed with an excellent drive that saw him stay clear of the midfield melee behind despite being one of the earlier stoppers. He almost took P5, only to be passed by Albon late on, but sixth still marks an excellent, deserved result.

Lance Stroll, Racing Point – 6

A tidy weekend from Lance Stroll. His qualifying was always going to be half-hearted given his grid penalty, yet he still reached Q2, and then made a good start to get into the hunt for points. The two-stop strategy wasn’t the best way to go, but the late setbacks for Norris and Giovinazzi promoted the Canadian up into P10.

Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo – 6

Spa specialist Raikkonen had a good shot at leading the midfield on Sunday after qualifying eighth, but his race was effectively over at Turn 1. The contact with Verstappen left his Alfa Romeo car with floor damage which left him limping around at the back.

Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo – 5

A huge opportunity went begging for Giovinazzi at Spa on Sunday. Starting near the back after a late power unit penalty, Giovinazzi gained six places off the start before his Medium-Soft strategy put him in a good position for points, running P9 prior to Norris’ stoppage. But a mistake at Pouhon saw him crash out, blowing a shot at his best result to date.

Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso – 8

From last on the grid thanks to a power unit penalty to P7, Daniil Kvyat showed few signs of disappointment for being overlooked for the Red Bull seat at Spa. The Russian made big gains at the start before picking his way up the order through the final stint on Softs, getting the jump on teammate Pierre Gasly in the process.

Pierre Gasly, Toro Rosso – 7

Gasly said on Thursday he simply wanted to get on with the job at hand with Toro Rosso following his Red Bull demotion, and he managed that well. He outqualified Kvyat and rolled the dice on an aggressive strategy, pitting early for Mediums, meaning he could not keep Kvyat and others back through the final stint. But the late retirements lifted him to P10, marking a scoring return to Toro Rosso.

George Russell, Williams – 6

This was always going to be Williams’ toughest race of the year, leaving George Russell little chance of maintaining his P14 grid slot (so high thanks to penalties). He still managed to lead Robert Kubica all weekend long, crossing the line 17 seconds clear of his teammate.

Robert Kubica, Williams – 6

Kubica didn’t get a chance to complete a lap in qualifying after an engine failure, prompting Williams to start him from the pit lane. Kubica kept Russell in sight until their pit stops, after which the Pole’s pace took a dip, leaving him well down at the flag. A decent display nonetheless.

 

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