In the course of the last twelve hours or so, there’ve been loud hues and cries about the stature of the recently-concluded Belgian GP. There’ve been talks as to whether the race should’ve gone ahead at all, in the first place. The massive rains. That inclement weather. The barely drivable conditions that actually would become hardly drivable conditions at a track soon, which in the past has offered slight rains but not massive rainfall the likes of which consumed the Belgian GP of 2021!
Such was the sorry state of affairs at the famous and incredibly beautiful Spa-Francorchamps that even drivers that got points at the end of the race, including none other than Lewis Hamilton himself, would go onto label the race and the act a ‘farce,’ suggesting boldly without a sign of being circumspect that the race should have simply ended and that no points should have been given at all.
Yet, we saw at the end of it all Max winning, George, for whom an entire lot was happy getting his maiden podium and Lewis himself batting for a non points finish, getting his third, i.e., P3.
Moreover, that the administrators of the sport waited for so long for the race to finish, even in tiny little pieces, wasn’t the only definitive or only perplexing factor about the Belgian GP.
What was absurd, in no uncertain terms, was drivers getting half their points, which meant instead of getting a whole 25, Max Verstappen, the race winner got 12.5. What sort of a counting is that, one asked?
Now, there’s plausible explanation in that F1 authorities have clearly offered answers as to why such a sight was even possible. Probably, this would help even drivers to settle the anxieties around the 2021 Belgian GP.
We took excerpts from a report published on Autosport and have the following to share:
Article 6.5 states: “If a sprint qualifying session or race is suspended under Article 50, and cannot be resumed, no points will be awarded if the leader has completed two laps or less, half points will be awarded if the leader has completed more than two laps but less than 75% of the original sprint qualifying session or race distance and full points will be awarded if the leader has completed 75% or more of the original sprint qualifying session or race distance.”
Although the F1 cars had completed two full laps behind the safety car, before the red flag came out on lap three, the way the results are taken in the event of a stoppage meant they did not get over this marker in the final race classification.
Article 51.14 states: “If the sprint qualifying session or the race cannot be resumed the results will be taken at the end of the penultimate lap before the lap during which the signal to suspend the sprint qualifying session or the race was given.
So at the end of it all, petulant cries that there may be about a race that wasn’t largely- but entirely- consumed by the rains with drivers running only 2 laps and that too, behind the safety car, there was a reason as to why points were awarded at the 2021 Belgian GP.
Hope the fact that the rule books and the laws it entrusts over feelings, at the end of the day, eventually matter in the sport so punctuated by emotions.