Last weekend’s GP2 at the 2015 Belgium Grand Prix was, as normal, full of excitement and action. The weekend started for the GP2 teams with practice on Friday, which I watched from Eau Rouge. The view is so spectacular that rather than taking photos, I spent the time just watching the cars climb up the ascent and on to the Kemmel Straight. We were walking around the circuit on Friday, and by the time the qualifying session started on Friday afternoon, we had made our way further around the track and rather than being distracted by the magnificence of a particular corner, I was ready to take a few photos.
The practice session had seen Belgian Stoffel Vandoorne top the timing screens, and qualifying had the same result, much to the delight of the partisan crowd as the rising star set the fastest time after just eight laps in the session. Soon, the cars were back with the teams, awaiting for the race, with much expected of local favourite Vandoorne.
It transpired that the feature race on Saturday afternoon after the Formula One qualifying was a dramatic session. The grid formed up with the usual frenetic activity before the teams cleared it and the cars headed off on their green flag lap.
The cars made their way back around to the grid, and the five lights came on, and went off as the race started and the cars hurtled down the main straight towards me at La Source.
There was contact at the first corner, and a marshal ran on to the track and cleared the debris, to the cheers of the crowd.
Sergey Sirotkin has managed to pass Vandoorne by La Source, but by Eau Rouge, Vandoorne had reestablished his lead. There was plenty of close racing as the race continued, and the grandstands were looking impressively full for a Saturday afternoon, no doubt driven in part by interest in Vandoorne.
Daniël de Jong was racing with Pierre Gasly in the high speed run down to Blanchiment, and ended up crashing out in a horrific incident that brought gasps from the crowd. The safety car came out, and was soon replaced by a red flag as the race was stopped and de Jong was taken by helicopter to hospital. It was later reported that de Jong required four hours of surgery due to broken vertebrae. Let’s hope he is recovered and back in a car soon.
The race resumed after de Jong’s car was recovered and the tyre wall was rebuilt, although the safety car period ended up causing a series of penalties to be imposed after the race due to speeding. Vandoorne continued to lead the race, which added to the excitement around Spa.
The race finished with a win for Vandoorne, extending his lead at the top of the table.
Sunday morning saw the GP2 sprint race, with the track still sunny but windier than it had been all weekend. The pit lane was soon busy as the teams prepared for the race, and again the grid started to form up.
The five lights counted down the five minutes to the green flag lap.
The green flag lap got under way, then the cars completed the lap to get back to their grid positions. The five red lights came on, and when they went out, the sprint race was under way.
The home crowd were hoping for another Vandoorne win, but there was plenty of competition in the race.
However, this race was not going to be quite as satisfying for the Vandoorne fans, with their hero finishing the race in fourth place behind the Racing Engineering cars of Alexander Rossi and Jordan King, and Russian Time’s Mitch Evans who completed the podium. Rossi may have cut Vandoorne’s lead in the championship, but he remains more than 100 points clear at the top of the table. The cars made their way back to the pits and their garages, ready for their next appearance at Monza.
Here are some of the photos from the weekend: