Belgian GP 1994

Belgian GP, 1994

As the Formula 1 teams gathered in Belgium it was becoming increasingly clear that Team Lotus was struggling for money. Alex Zanardi was dropped to make way for pay-driver Philippe Adams but he failed to impress and qualified only 26th. Mika Hakkinen was back in action with McLaren after his one-race ban and Philippe Alliot, who had driven for McLaren in Hungary, had moved to Larrousse since pay-driver Olivier Beretta's money had run out.

Qualifying was disrupted by rain and the final minutes of the final session were in drying conditions. The result was a grid which was much more scrambled than usual with Rubens Barrichello taking pole position in his Jordan-Hart ahead of Michael Schumacher's Benetton, Damon Hill's Williams-Renault, Eddie Irvine's Jordan, Jean Alesi's Ferrari and Jos Verstappen's Benetton. The top 10 was completed by David Coulthard (Williams-Renault), Mika Hakkinen (McLaren-Peugeot), Heinz-Harald Frentzen's Sauber and Pierluigi Martini in his Minardi.

At the start of the race the track was dry and Barrichello led only as far as the run up the hill after Eau Rouge. He was overtaken by both Schumacher and Alesi in the course of the first lap and Hill followed them through soon afterwards. Alesi soon went out with engine failure and so it was back to the usual battle between Schumacher and Hill. On this occasion, however, the German was unbeatable and even had time to survive a spin on his way to victory. After the race however the scrutineers discovered that the wooden "stepped flat bottom" of Schumacher's car had been worn away too much and so he was excluded from the results. These are planks of special hard wood which are fitted under the cars. They must show no significant wear at the end of the race as this would indicate that the car was running illegally low. The lower the car, the greater the aerodynamic advantage for better speed and cornering. Victory was given to Hill with Hakkinen second, Verstappen third and Coulthard fourth.

dq Michael Schumacher Benetton-Cosworth  44 Illegal Skidblock Wear 
Damon Hill Williams-Renault FW16 44 1h28m47.170s  
Mika Hakkinen McLaren-Peugeot  44 1h29m38.551s  
Jos Verstappen Benetton-Cosworth  44 1h29m57.623s  
David Coulthard Williams-Renault  44 1h30m32.957s  
Mark Blundell Tyrrell-Yamaha  43  12 
10 Gianni Morbidelli Footwork-Cosworth  43  14 
26 Olivier Panis Ligier-Renault  43  17 
23 Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Cosworth  43  10 
24 Michele Alboreto Minardi-Cosworth  43  18 
10 25 Eric Bernard Ligier-Renault  42  16 
11 32 Jean-Marc Gounon Simtek-Cosworth  42  25 
12 12 Johnny Herbert Lotus-Mugen Honda  41  20 
13r 15 Eddie Irvine Jordan-Hart  40 Alternator 
Christian Fittipaldi Footwork-Cosworth  33 Engine 24 
31 David Brabham Simtek-Cosworth  29 Wheel Lost 21 
29 Andreas de Cesaris Sauber-Mercedes  27 Throttle Jammed/accident 15 
Martin Brundle McLaren-Peugeot  24 Spin 13 
14 Rubens Barrichello Jordan-Hart  19 Spin 
Ukyo Katayama Tyrrell-Yamaha  18 Engine/spin 23 
11 Philippe Adams Lotus-Mugen Honda  15 Spin 26 
28 Gerhard Berger Ferrari  11 Engine 11 
19 Philippe Alliot Larrousse-Cosworth  11 Engine 19 
30 Heinz-Harald Frentzen Sauber-Mercedes  10 Spin 
20 Erik Comas Larrousse-Cosworth  Engine 22 
27 Jean Alesi Ferrari  Engine 
34 Bertrand Gachot Pacific-Ilmor     
33 Paul Belmondo Pacific-Ilmor