How many drivers have failed to finish a race at Spa? Who has finished every race they’ve started at the track? And just how much did that 1998 Belgian Grand Prix pile-up cost? Here’s Spa-Francorchamps in numbers!
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There’s only one driver with the surname Senna who has set a fastest lap of a Grand Prix at the Spa Francorchamps circuit – and his name isn’t Ayrton. Bruno Senna set the only fastest lap of his Grand Prix career at the Belgian Grand Prix in 2012. Despite taking pole here on four consecutive occasions (and winning the race five times), his Uncle Ayrton never set the fastest lap of a race at this track.
Peter Collins entered the Belgian Grand Prix on five occasions, but only finished the race once. The only race which he finished at Spa-Francorchamps was the 1956 event, which he won for Ferrari. It was his first of three victories in the sport.
There have only been two races held at Spa-Francorchamps where none of the top three starters finished the race in the top three positions. It happened in 1987 and 1995. In 1987, the three podium finishers were Alain Prost from 6th on the grid, Stefan Johansson from 10th on the grid and Andrea de Cesaris from 13th on the grid. In 1995, Michael Schumacher won from 16th on the grid, Jacques Villeneuve finished as runner-up from 8th and Mika Hakkinen completed the podium after lining up 13th. Aside from Lewis Hamilton in 2016, there have been no Belgian Grand Prix podium finishes from lower than ninth on the grid since 2013.
Three drivers have a 100% podium finish record at Spa, and all three competed in just one F1 race at the circuit. Luigi Fagioli finished as runner-up in the very first F1 race at the circuit, Robert Manzon finished third in 1952 and Stuart Lewis-Evans finished third in his only appearance in 1958.
With sixteen poles, British drivers have taken more than double the number of pole positions of any other nation at this track. Their nearest competitor is Brazil, with their drivers having taken six poles at Spa. Lewis Hamilton, Graham Hill, Nigel Mansell, Mike Hawthorn, John Surtees, Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart and Jenson Button have all contributed to the pole tally of British drivers at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps.
Sixteen drivers have scored points in all of their appearances at Spa Francorchamps. Perhaps most impressive from the list is Alberto Ascari, who entered four Grands Prix at the track, never finishing below fifth, and scoring three podium finishes, including wins in 1952 and 1953. Some other, perhaps surprising, names on this list include Tiago Monteiro and Sebastien Bourdais. Alex Albon and Pierre Gasly are the latest drivers to join this club.
The furthest back podium finish at the Spa circuit came from 21st on the grid, which Lewis Hamilton achieved in 2016. Starting from near the back after a raft of engine penalties didn’t stop Hamilton from finishing in the top three on that day, as he tried to win points back in the title race with team-mate Nico Rosberg.
A total of 68 drivers have a 0% finish rate at Spa. This list includes champions Denny Hulme, Alan Jones and Niki Lauda, the latter two only starting one race here during their careers due to the absence of the track from the calendar between 1971 and 1982. Anotnio Giovinazzi is the latest driver to join this list, having failed to finish the Belgian Grand Prix in both 2019 and 2020.
2004 is the only time a World Champion has been crowned at Spa. Michael Schumacher took his seventh and final title in front of the Belgian fans with four rounds of the championship to spare.
2,104 racing laps have taken place at Circuit de Spa Francorchamps in F1 World Championship history.
The estimated cost of the damage caused in the first lap pile-up at the 1998 Belgian Grand Prix was $13 million USD. The accident happened after David Coulthard aquaplaned on the damp track when driving over a drain cover. The resulting pile-up involved no less than thirteen cars, with four drivers unable to make the restart. Watch the highlights here.