Repeating their team's performance of two weeks earlier in Hungary, the two drivers of the McLaren-Mercedes team ran to an unchallenged 1-2 victory in the Belgian Grand Prix. This time, however, it was David Coulthard who came home ahead of Mika...
Repeating their team's performance of two weeks earlier in Hungary, the two drivers of the McLaren-Mercedes team ran to an unchallenged 1-2 victory in the Belgian Grand Prix. This time, however, it was David Coulthard who came home ahead of Mika Hakkinen after their cars had made contact at the first corner. With Heinz-Harald Frentzen bringing his Jordan home 3rd, the best that Ferrari driver Eddie Irvine could do was to come home in a distant 4th place. The results strengthen the McLaren drivers' positions in the world championship, in which Hakkinen has retaken the lead from Irvine (60 points to 59), with Coulthard in 3rd place on 46 points. In the constructors' championship, McLaren now has 106 points to the 97 of Ferrari.
Yoshihiko Ichikawa, Bridgestone Motorsport Technical Manager: "As expected, we experienced considerable degradation today."
Steve Hallam, Chief Engineer, West McLaren Mercedes: "This result was perfect for us. The whole team put in a lot of effort all over the weekend. The good performance of the Bridgestone tyres, together with the unusually stable weather, contributed to our final result. Although we have moved ahead again in both world championships, the Italian GP in two weeks' time will be another critical race. The long straights at Monza are hard on engines and the chicanes are tough on brakes. We have to work harder than ever in next week's Monza test to make sure we are in good shape for the race.".
Eddie Irvine, Ferrari driver: "I had virtually no downforce on the car for the race, and on the first lap I found it almost impossible to slow down for the corner at the top of the hill. With the lack of downforce, the car was sliding very badly. But I knew before the race that I wasn't going to be fast enough to outrun other drivers, so the only way to make sure they didn't overtake me was to take off as much wing as possible. Although I was only able to finish 4th, Mika Hakkinen got only three points more than me today and with DC winning, I am still only one point behind him in the championship. It seems that McLaren likes to give us small presents! I am still confident about the next four races, although the McLarens are usually very fast on straight-line circuits like Monza. "
TEMPERATURES AIR TRACK WEATHER Morning 16:-18: 19:-21: Sunny - dry Afternoon 22:-23: 29:-28: Sunny - dry