F1 drivers 'angry' at Belgian Grand Prix 'farce'

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Max Verstappen won a rain-soaked Belgian Grand Prix erstwhile it was yet called disconnected Sunday aft it restarted nether a information car astir 3 hours aboriginal than its scheduled time.

The contention was shortened to past 1 hr with lone fractional points awarded to the winner, who needed to implicit lone 2 laps to gain points.

"Now, successful hindsight, it was important to get the rod position," Red Bull operator Verstappen said. "But it was a shame not to bash due laps."

Lewis Hamilton hits retired astatine the Belgian Grand Prix 'farce'. (Instagram)

He was starring from Williams operator George Russell and Mercedes prima Lewis Hamilton connected Lap 4 erstwhile the restarted contention ended aft astir 10 minutes with rainfall inactive lashing down.

"Of people it's a triumph but not however you privation to win," Verstappen said. "Credit to each the fans who stayed present for truthful long. They are the existent winners today."

Verstappen's sixth triumph of the play was the 16th of his vocation and stopped Hamilton earning a record-extending 100th win, portion besides trimming his wide pb from 8 points to three.

Verstappen collected 12.5 points alternatively of 25, with Russell getting 9 for his archetypal vocation podium and Hamilton picking up 7.5.

Fans cheered loudly from the stands and the hills astir the way erstwhile it was announced the contention would commencement again astatine 6:17 p.m. section clip (1617 GMT) — 3 hours, 17 minutes aft it usually would have.

But aft conscionable 10 minutes of Verstappen rolling cautiously down the information car it was suspended for a 2nd clip astatine conscionable earlier 6:30 p.m.

"I truly anticipation the fans get their wealth backmost today," Hamilton said. "They were incredible."

The archetypal clip the contention was suspended was soon aft 3:30 p.m. section clip pursuing a enactment lap.

The 7-kilometre (4.3-mile) Spa-Francorchamps circuit was wholly drenched. Soaked fans huddled nether ample umbrellas connected muddy banks arsenic they waited for the worst of the rainfall to pass. The heavy clouds and mist hanging implicit the Ardennes wood besides gave the circuit a daunting look and made for mediocre visibility.

The information car leads Max Verstappen astatine the Belgian Grand Prix. (Getty)

When the drivers embarked connected their enactment laps the archetypal clip around, respective complained.

"I truly can't spot anything," said Hamilton, who was chasing a 5th triumph astatine the track.

The determination to suspend the commencement was made a fewer moments later.

"It's wet, but I deliberation it's good to race," said Verstappen who started from rod for the sixth clip this play and ninth overall.

His teammate Sergio Perez appeared to beryllium retired of the contention earlier it adjacent started, sliding disconnected the way during the warmup thigh astatine astir 2:30 p.m. and damaging his beforehand suspension.

Daniel Ricciardo's 200th Grand Prix ne'er truly got going. (Getty)

Red Bull asked contention power if Perez could commencement the contention if they repaired his car successful time. The FIA said it was considering the petition and aboriginal announced Perez would beryllium allowed to commencement from the pit lane.

At 5 p.m. a further hold was announced.

McLaren's Daniel Ricciardo entertained the fans waiting successful the grandstand from the pit lane. In his 200th F1 race, the fashionable Australian made extravagant manus gestures and waved to them arsenic they chanted "Daniel, Daniel."

"I evidently consciousness for them," Ricciardo said. "We're successful it unneurotic but circumstances are retired of our control."

It was a mediocre amusement for F1 — pursuing immoderate thrilling races this play -- but for Russell it was a immense contention for his career.

Russell, who came done the Mercedes young operator program, is being touted arsenic a imaginable Mercedes operator adjacent twelvemonth if the squad does not renew Valtteri Bottas' contract. Bottas was 12th and scored nary points.

Russell started from 2nd pursuing a superb qualifying league connected Saturday that truly caught the eye.

"We don't often get rewarded for a large qualifying but contiguous we perfectly did," helium said. "There's been truthful overmuch hard enactment implicit the past fewer years and present we are connected the podium."

Hamilton was captious of those who had fto the contention spell ahead, helium felt, for the involvement of it.

"They sent america retired for the 2 laps down the information car to get a race," the seven-time F1 champion said. "You couldn't truly spot 5 metres successful beforehand of you. It was hard to adjacent spot down the straight. You couldn't spell level out."

The adjacent contention is the Dutch GP adjacent weekend, wherever tens of thousands of orange-clad location fans volition beryllium roaring connected their countryman Verstappen arsenic helium looks to reclaim the title lead.

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