Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton dominated the Belgian Grand Prix to take his fifth victory in seven races this year and the 89th of his career.
Hamilton headed team-mate Valtteri Bottas to a Mercedes one-two, from Red Bull’s Max Verstappen. The victory puts Hamilton 47 points – almost two clear wins – ahead of Verstappen in the championship. The Briton is two victories away from Michael Schumacher’s all-time record and set to equal his seven titles. It was another imperious performance from Hamilton, his fifth win in the last six races. He took pole position from Bottas by more than half a second on Saturday, held on in front on the first lap, always a challenge at Spa with the long run from the La Source hairpin up the hill to Les Combes, and never looked back. He is turning the season into one of total domination and looks unbeatable as he seeks to make Formula 1 history. It was a staid race at the front, Hamilton too quick for Bottas and the Finn with enough to hold off Verstappen, as all three measured their pace to ensure their tyres held on for a long final stint after being forced into an early pit stop because of a safety car. That was triggered on lap 10 when Antonio Giovinazzi lost control of his Alfa Romeo at the exit of the Fagnes chicane and bounced back onto the track, a stray front wheel from his car also wiping out George Russell’s Williams. It was the second Belgian Grand Prix in succession in which the Italian has crashed out on his own. That meant a stop for all the leaders, and as the race ticked on Hamilton began to express his concerns about his right front tyre, his mind on the blow-out on the final lap that almost cost him victory at Silverstone last month. In the end, though, he had everything under control, as he seems to have for the season as a whole.