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GP Week : Issue 226
Aside from Sergio Perez poking his nose up the outside as the pack headed towards Les Combes on the opening lap, Lewis Hamilton had an untroubled race to his second Belgian Grand Prix win. Of course it's the third time he's crossed the line first, but he was stripped of one of those when he passed Kimi Raikkonen while off the circuit. Hamilton's record at Spa hasn't been brilliant. While he has won around the fearsome Belgian circuit he's also crashed out on multiple occasions, once with Sergio Perez. So the Englishman will have cause to feel extra satisfied with his result as it goes someway to vanquish the demons that had plagued him in the Ardennes. Hamilton's road to victory was eased by the fact teammate Nico Rosberg was slow away. The new starting procedures, which severely restrict the coaching drivers receive from the pit wall, instantly served to mix up the field with Rosberg just fifth at the end of the opening lap. Perez was second, having got a blinder, and for a few metres even had his nose ahead of Hamilton for the lead. But such was the pace of the Mercedes that even a poor start couldn't prevent Rosberg reclaiming second spot. The only downside was he gained the time during the pitstop cycle, denying us all the opportunity to see him race through the field. From the team's perspective it was a shrewd move, having him hold station and look after his car before putting the hammer down when he had clear track. He jumped both Daniel Ricciardo and Perez in the process, having already muscled back passed Valtteri Bottas. The strategy clearly worked as it slashed Hamilton's lead from seven seconds to a little over three. It didn't 20 GPWEEK.com // 20 GPWEEK.com // F1 >>> BELGIUM PARTNERS: