Kimi Raikkonen Wins Belgium Grand Prix

Kimi Raikkonen Wins Belgium Grand Prix

by F1Fan on August 30, 2009

In a race weekend full of surprises with Force India fastest in qualifying, BMW Sauber and Toyota finding increased pace and the early elimination of the McLarens, Kimi Raikkenon surprised everyone coming from mid pack on the grid to win the Belgium Grand Prix, the fourth win of his career at the famous Spa Francorchamp circuit and the first win for Ferarri this season.

It all started with Kimi making a fantastic start, narrowly missing Rubens Barrichello directly in front of him on the grid, Rubens had a terrible start almost stalling in front of Kimi’s Ferrari. Raikkonen made best use of his KERS system rocketing from 6th to 3rd before colliding with Trulli’s Toyota, while neither the Ferrari or Toyota were seriously damaged, the collision allowed Kimi to take over second position. This same collision led to a massive pile up further down the field as cars braked hard to avoid the cars slowing for Raikkonen and Trulli. The resulting carnage took out 4 cars, Lewis Hamilton, Jenson Button, Jamie, Alguersuari and Romain Grosjean and led to the release of the safety car while the track was cleared of debris.

At the restart Fisichella was still leading the race with Kimi following closely behind, going through Eau Rouge and then using the boost in horsepower from the Ferrari’s KERS system to easily overtake Fisichella as they raced up the hill to Les Combes.

Fisichella did not make it easy for Raikkonen, keeping within one two two seconds of Kimi for the rest of the race, the Ferrari being faster in Sectors one and three where Kimi could use the KERS to advantage but loosing time in the second sector where the handling of the Force India chassis was far superior.

In the final pit stop both the Ferrari and Force India team performed flawlessly and while Fisichella came out right behind Raikkonen and was gaining ground, he unable to pass. Finishing a well deserved second place and gaining the first points for the season and the first points ever for the Force India team.

Belgium Grand Prix Results (Top Eight)

1FinlandKimi RaikkenonFerrari10
2ItalyGiancarlo FisichellaForce India8
3GermanySebastian VettelRed Bull Racing6
4PolandlRobert KubicaBMW Sauber5
5GermanyNick HeidfeldBMW Sauber4
6FinlandHeikki KovalainenMcLaren3
7BrazilRubens BarrichelloBrawn GP2
8GermanyNico RosbergWilliams1
Updated Aug 30th, 2009

During the second half of the Race Sebastian Vettel in the Red Bull put in some incredibly fast laps, quick enough to push Kubica out of third place after the final pit stop rotation, In fact if Vettel hadn’t made a mistake in qualifying his pace in the race showed that he could have easily won.

The first lap incident also eventually claimed Fernando Alonso who suffered from a problem similar to Hungary where his team could not get the wheel Fairing mounted properly in the last Pit stop, although this time caused by damage incurred during the race, rather than risk a racing incident and possible FIA Sanctions Renault called Alonso back in when it became evident that the wheel fairing was not properly secured. Toyota also started the weekend well qualifying high on the grid but the first incident ruined Toyota’s race chances and finally cause Trulli’s retirement, possibly because of damage incurred when he and Raikkonen came together.

All in all an event filled race, with Force India as underdogs competing head to head with Ferrari throughout the race. Interestingly there are rumors that Fisichella may be offered Luca Badoers seat at Ferrari, while playing down the rumors Fisichella could not have done his chances any harm with his outstanding performance this weekend at Spa.

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