Belgian GP - Sunday - Race Notes

Vettel cruises to Belgium GP win

Start, Belgian GP 2013

Start, Belgian GP 2013 

 © Active Pictures

Sebastian Vettel won the Belgian GP today at Spa-Francorchamps in Red Bull-Renault. Fernando Alonso was second in his Ferrari, 16.8 seconds behind, and polesitter Lewis Hamilton finished third in his Mercedes GP, 27.7 seconds behind the winner.

Vettel's 31st career win now ties him with Nigel Mansell for fifth on the all-time winners list. The victory is his second at the Spa circuit, and his fifth of the 2013 season.

Kimi Raikkonen started the day second in the Drivers Championship, but fell to fourth after dropping out of the race while suffering from brake problems.

Nico Rosberg (29.8s) finished in the second Mercedes in fourth place, followed by Mark Webber (33.8s) in the Red Bull in fifth, Jenson Button (40.7s) in the McLaren-Mercedes in sixth, Felipe Massa (53.9s) in the second Ferrari in seventh, Romain Grosjean (55.8s) in the Lotus-Renault in eighth, Adrian Sutil (69.5s) in the Force India-Mercedes in ninth, and Daniel Ricciardo (73.4s) in the Toro Rosso-Ferrari finished in the final points paying position in tenth.

Before the start the weather was dry, but as always at Spa, there is always the chance of changing weather conditions.

The top half of the grid all starting on medium compound tyres - Guiterrez, Ricciardo, Bianchi and Chilton are starting on the hard compound tyres.

Polesitter Hamilton leads the field around on the formation lap.

On the grid Button's McLaren is smoking.

At the start Hamilton leads Vettel and Rosberg off the line. Vettel gets a good run through Eau Rouge and passes Hamilton for the lead at the top of the hill.

Vettel leads Hamilton, Rosberg, Button, Alonso, Webber, Di Resta, Hulkenberg and Grosjean.

Alonso up to fifth after starting ninth. While Di Resta has a poor start.

On lap 2, Alonso is all over the back of Button's McLaren looking for a way past.

At the end of lap 2 Vettel leads Hamilton by 2.8 seconds.

On lap 4 Alonso passes Button up the straight to Les Combes to take fourth place.

On lap 5 Webber passes Button as well to take fifth place.

On lap 6 Alonso passes Rosberg, again on the Kemmel straight to take third place.

At lap 7 Vettel leads Hamilton by 4.1 seconds, followed by Alonso (7.1s), Rosberg (8.8s), Webber (10.0s), Button (11.5s), Di Resta (14.7s), Hulkenberg (15.7s), Raikkonen (16.4s) and Grosjean (17.2s) in tenth place.

There are fears that Raikkonen's brakes are overheating.

On lap 8 Perez passes Grosjean for tenth place. Massa passes him as well.

On lap 9 Raikkonen takes Hulkenberg for 8th place. Perez's pass of Grosjean is under investigation.

On lap 10 Massa and Hulkenberg both pit. Massa takes more medium tyres, while Hulkenberg takes hard tyres.

Charles Pic retires his Caterham in the pits/

On lap 11 Di Resta and Vergne both make their first stops.

On lap 12 Hamilton pits from second place and takes another set of medium tyres. Perez is given with a drive-through penalty for forcing Grosjean off the track when he passed him.

Sutil and Maldonado also pit both switching to hard tyres.

On lap 13 Rosberg pits from fifth place. Hamilton passes Grosjean in the final chicane for 8th place. Grojean comes back and passes him back in the DRS zone on the Kemmel straight.

On lap 14 Alonso, Webber and Perez all pit. Webber switches to hard tyres while Alonso stays on medium tyres.

Alonso rejoins behind Hamilton.

On lap 14 Hamilton passes Grosjean and sets fastest lap at 1m53.9s.

Vettel pits from the lead, staying on medium tyres. Button, yet to pit, takes over the lead.

On lap 15 Alonso passes Hamilton out of the La Source hairpin to take third place. Vettel passes Button for the lead at the final chicane. Webber sets fastest lap at 1m52.8s.

On lap 16 Vettel sets fast lap at 1m52.8s. Ricciardo pits.

At lap 16 Vettel leads Button by 4.1 seconds, followed by Alonso (6.2s), Hamilton (7.8s), Rosberg (12.0s), Grosjean (13.9s), Webber (14.3s), Massa (25.1s), Gutierrez (25.6s), Perez (26.3s) and Raikkonen (26.4s) in tenth.

On lap 17 Webber passes Grosjean for sixth. Raikkonen passes Perez for 10th. Button makes his first pitstop for hard tyres.

On lap 18 Raikkonen passes Gutierrez flr 9th place. Di Resta loses out to Guiterrez and Sutil.

On lap 19 Sutil passes Gutierrez for 10th place. Perez makes his first stop, switching to hard compound tyres. Webber is closing on Rosberg in fourth.

On lap 20 Gutierrez stops for hard tyres. Grosjean in sixth is the only driver yet to pit - but is lapping 3 seconds slower than the other drivers on new tyres.

On lap 22 Button passes Grosjean for sixth place into the final chicane.

At half distance on lap 22 Vettel continues to extend his lead over Alonso to 8.7 seconds, followed by Hamilton (12.8s), Rosberg (18.4s), Webber (19.2s), Button (29.6s), Massa (34.6s), Raikonen (35.1), Grosjean (37.3s) and Sutil (42.5s) in tenth place.

Grosjean finally makes a pitstop and switches to hard tyres - on a one-stop strategy.

On lap 23 Raikkonen continues to chase Massa for seventh - the Lotus unable to find a way past the Ferrari.

On lap 25 Hulkenberg and Vergne are the first to make their second pitstops - both on hard tyres.

On lap 26 Rosberg pits from fifth place. Raikkonen tries to pass Massa but overshoots the chicane, and then pits immediately and retires with brake problems. It is the first race Raikkonen has retired in after 38 consecutive finishes and 27 consecutive points finishes.

On lap 27 Hamilton, Massa and Sutil all pit.

On lap 28 Di Resta and Maldonado make contact in the final chicane - Di Resta in out on the spot, Maldonado pits.

On lap 29 Alonso makes his second stop from second place and changes over to the hard compound tyre, and rejoins behind Webber in third place.

On lap 30 Webber makes his second stop from second place for medium tyres - he rejoins sixth.

On lap 31 Vettel pits and changes to hard tyres. Alonso sets fast lap at 1m51.4s.

On lap 32 Vettel responds and sets fast lap at 1m50.8s, and leads Alonso by 7.7 seconds.

On lap 33 Max Chilton is given a drive through penalty for ignoring blue flags. Webber closes on Rosberg in fifth place.

On lap 34 Button pits from third place for more hard tyres, and rejoins in sixth behind Webber.

On lap 35 Sutil passes Perez for ninth. Vergne and Hulkenberg battle for 11th place. Maldonado is given a 10 second stop-go penalty for causing the collision with Di Resta.

On lap 37 Button sets fast lap at 1m50.8s.

On lap 39 Ricciardo passes his team mate Vergne for 11th place. Maldonado pits for his penalty.

On lap 40 Massa passes Grosjean for seventh place. Vettel sets fast lap at 1m50.7s.

At lap 40 Vettel continues to set the pace, and leads Alonso by 14.8 seconds, followed by Hamilton (26.7s), Rosberg (28.7s), Webber (30.2s), Button (39.9s), Massa (50.0s), Grosjean (51.5s), Sutil (65.9s) and Perez (72.9s) in tenth place.

On lap 41 Ricciardo passes Perez on the Kemmel straight for ten place.

On lap 42 Gutierrez pits for a stop-go penalty.

Vettel continues to lead to the flag ahead of Alonso and Hamilton.

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