Saturday, October 22, 2005

No Spa in 2006?

Recent news reports all point to the Spa GP for 2006 is in doubt. Spa is one of the few memorable race tracks left. F1 without Spa is always going to be a bit less special. It has happened in recently, when we didn't have a Spa GP in 2003. News reports are here, here and here.

What makes Spa so special is the race track. High in Ardennes Mountains, the rain can sweep in almost unnoticed and the undulating track makes it a real challange.

Some of the memorable moments over the last 10 years have been at the Spa GP.
  1. M. Schumacher's win in 1995. Bit controversial and he earned a 1 GP ban because of his blocking moves on Damon Hill. If you are an MS fan then you could call it tactical brillance from him but if you are a anti-MS fan then its another example of the things that make you an anti-MS fan. But no one can deny the shear spectacle of watching him start the race in 16th and finish 1st. link.
  2. Damon Hill's win in 1998. Again race intervened and we had M. Schumacher leading by the proverbial country mile. Hakkinen was out of the race and had the win gone to Schumacher, he would have closed the gap quite dramatically for the driver's championship. But as it would turn out, he tried to lap DC at the Bus Stop Chicane and instead ran into the back of the McLaren. What makes it so memorable is that when both reached the pits, MS blew his top and went straight to DC. That made the news and it was live tv. DH won and R Schumacher came second, but it was the first win for Jordan and that makes it a bit special. link.
  3. Hakkinen's Win in 2000. This took some driving. M Schumacher had a nice lead in the latter part of the race. This was brought out by rain (as usual). But once the track started to dry, Hakkinen reeled in MS. It was obvious that the Ferrari wasn't as quick or as kind on its tyres as the McLaren. Within a few laps MH was right behind MS. He tried to pass at Les Combe Chicane but MS defended. Next lap he was right on MS's tail through Eau Rouge, and as they reached Les Combe, Zonta's BAR came up to be lapped. What happened next is sheer magic. MS moved to the middle of the race track lined right behind Zonta. Then he moved Left to Lap Zonta. MH followed for a split second, before deciding to overtake Zonta from the Right. So we had 3 cars side by side at 300 kmph just 300 mtrs from the Les Combe Chicane. MH managed to come ahead of both Zonta and MS. Wow. link.

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