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1985 Belgian Grand Prix

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

1985 Belgian Grand Prix
Race 13 of 16 in the 1985 Formula One World Championship
Spa 1996.jpg
Race details
Date 15 September 1985
Location Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium
Course Permanent racing facility
Course length 6.940 km (4.312 mi)
Distance 43 laps, 301.172 km (187.136 mi)
Weather Wet/Dry, drying up in later stages
Pole position
Driver McLaren-TAG
Time 1:55.306
Fastest lap
Driver France Alain Prost McLaren-TAG
Time 2:01.730 on lap 38
Podium
First Lotus-Renault
Second Williams-Honda
Third McLaren-TAG
Lap leaders

The 1985 Belgian Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held at Spa-Francorchamps on 15 September 1985. It was the thirteenth round of the 1985 FIA Formula One World Championship. The race was the 43rd Belgian Grand Prix, the 31st to be held at Spa and the second since the circuit had been rebuilt and re-opened at half its original length in 1979. The race was held over 43 laps of the seven kilometre circuit for a total race distance of 301 kilometres.

The race was won by Brazilian driver Ayrton Senna driving a Lotus 97T. It was Senna's second World Championship victory and the first of five he would win at Spa-Francorchamps. Senna won by 28 seconds over British driver Nigel Mansell driving a Williams FW10. Third was World Championship points leader, French driver Alain Prost driving a McLaren MP4/2B. The win promoted Senna to third in the drivers' standings and third place allowed Prost to expand his lead over Ferrari driver Michele Alboreto to 16 points.

Race summary

Postponement

This was the second Belgian Grand Prix to occur at a reconfigured Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, with the first being the 1983 race. Race organisers opted to resurface the track with a material called Stress Absorbing Membrane Interlayer that intended to provide improved grip in wet-weather conditions at a cost of £3 million.[1][2] Fédération Internationale du Sport Automobile (FISA), the governing body of Formula One, was queried about the resurfacing work and replied it would approve if race organisers complied with a regulation that mandates any such work occur 60 days beforehand. Local bureaucracy and a harsh winter caused delays to the work, which were reportedly finished ten days before the event's scheduled date of 31 May, and forced a cancellation of a pre-race test session at the circuit.[1] Organisers did not refer the incident to the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile and went ahead.[2]

Warm weather, the powerful turbocharged cars of the time,[1] and their wide, slick tyres,[2] damaged the track during the Friday practice session.[1] Repairs to the circuit were conducted overnight and undamaged turns were also addressed. After around 25 minutes into the Saturday practice session, all on-track activity stopped, since drivers noticed the damage and held a series of meetings. One suggestion was to cancel the remainder of the day's activities, the Sunday morning warm-up session and enter straight into the race on Sunday afternoon. Bernie Ecclestone, the commercial rights holder of Formula One, called every team principal to a meeting and told them to hold the International Formula 3000 support round on Sunday afternoon or it be the primary event.[1] Drivers and officials inspected the track at 18:00 local time.[2] Discussions continued until 19:30 local time and drivers' representative Niki Lauda told the media that the Formula One race would be postponed.[1]

Jean-Marie Balestre, the president of FISA, was furious and summoned race organisers to the FISA executive meeting in Paris "to explain the serious fault committed," and said that they "will be liable to very heavy sanctions."[1] The Belgian ASN was fined $10,000 and a provisional $100,000 bond to be deposited to FISA by the organisers would be returned in the event there were no further problems with the track on the rescheduled date. Ecclestone rescheduled the race to 15 September, following the Italian Grand Prix at the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza and the European Grand Prix at Brands Hatch. The race at Brands Hatch was later moved back by one week to provide the teams with some preparation.[1]

Race

Because this was a re-scheduled race Formula One's newest team Haas Lola and their driver, 1980 World Champion Alan Jones, who had their first race at the previous round in Italy were not permitted to enter as they were not on the original entry list. During the buildup to the race FISA president Jean-Marie Balestre announced that the controversial South African Grand Prix would take place despite pressure to cancel the event as part of anti-apartheid embargoes.

Missing from the grid was an injured Niki Lauda. At the end of Friday's practice session before qualifying proper, his McLaren MP4/2B's throttle struck open while he was only touring back to the pits. The car slid off the track on the newer section of track and the three time and defending World Champion hit a guardrail and on impact the steering wheel whipped around wrenching his wrist as it did so. X-rays revealed no break but Lauda was not fit to race so he returned home to Austria for further inspection and treatment from his physical therapist Willi Dungl. McLaren initially hoped to put John Watson in Lauda's car but this would have required the approval of all other teams. Mindful of the Constructors' Championship, Ferrari refused to agree, leaving Alain Prost as McLaren's only driver in Belgium. RAM was also down to one car, only bringing a single RAM 03 for Philippe Alliot and the 1985 Formula 3000 champion Christian Danner made his world championship debut with Zakspeed.[3][4]

Prost took pole position, averaging 135.929 mph (218.756 km/h) from Senna with Nelson Piquet qualifying third in his Brabham BT54, with Alboreto fourth in his Ferrari 156/85. Rain fell before the race leaving the grid to form on a damp track with wet-weather tyres for the first time since Senna won in Portugal. Senna won the start from Piquet but the Brabham spun at the first corner. Senna led from Prost, Mansell and the two Ferraris of Alboreto and Stefan Johansson. The Ferraris were soon out, from a broken clutch and engine respectively. Meanwhile Johansson retired after spinning off at the end of the Kemmel Straight on Lap 8. Prost dropped behind the two Williams FW10s as the field pitted for dry tyres. Late in the race rain fell again and Senna expanded his lead. Keke Rosberg dropped to fourth with a brief pit visit with a brake problem and they finished in that order. Fifth had been Thierry Boutsen until his Arrows A8 broke its gearbox. Piquet claimed fifth from Derek Warwick in a Renault RE60B. Twelve cars finished the race, including for the first time a Minardi as Pierluigi Martini finished twelfth in his Minardi M185. A further two cars, Boutsen and the crashed Ligier JS25 of Jacques Laffite were also classified as finishers. Huub Rothengatter's Osella FA1G fell one lap short of being classified.[3][4]

Although the marshals led the cars directly into the pits after finish, Ayrton Senna drove around them and took a lap of honour.[5]

Classification

Qualifying

Times recorded on Friday qualifying session before postponement (31 May 1985)

Pos No Driver Constructor Time
1 27 Italy Michele Alboreto Ferrari 1:56.046
2 11 Italy Elio de Angelis Lotus-Renault 1:56.273
3 12 Brazil Ayrton Senna Lotus-Renault 1:56.473
4 15 France Patrick Tambay Renault 1:56.586
5 28 Sweden Stefan Johansson Ferrari 1:57.506
6 6 Finland Keke Rosberg Williams-Honda 1:57.705
7 7 Brazil Nelson Piquet Brabham-BMW 1:58.122
8 25 Italy Andrea de Cesaris Ligier-Renault 1:58.302
9 17 Austria Gerhard Berger Arrows-BMW 1:58.343
10 1 Austria Niki Lauda McLaren-TAG 1:58.374
11 5 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Williams-Honda 1:58.658
12 18 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Arrows-BMW 1:58.874
13 16 United Kingdom Derek Warwick Renault 1:59.129
14 19 Italy Teo Fabi Toleman-Hart 2:00.592
15 26 France Jacques Laffite Ligier-Renault 2:00.729
16 23 United States Eddie Cheever Alfa Romeo 2:00.782
17 22 Italy Riccardo Patrese Alfa Romeo 2:01.396
18 8 Switzerland Marc Surer Brabham-BMW 2:01.555
19 30 United Kingdom Jonathan Palmer Zakspeed 2:04.990
20 4 Germany Stefan Bellof Tyrrell-Renault 2:05.070
21 24 Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani Osella-Alfa Romeo 2:05.088
22 3 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Tyrrell-Renault 2:05.782
23 9 Germany Manfred Winkelhock RAM-Hart 2:06.771
24 29 Italy Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Motori Moderni 2:12.279
2 France Alain Prost McLaren-TAG no time
10 France Philippe Alliot RAM-Hart no time

Rescheduled qualifying

Pos No Driver Constructor Q1 Q2 Gap
1 2 France Alain Prost McLaren-TAG 1:56.563 1:55.306
2 12 Brazil Ayrton Senna Lotus-Renault 2:00.710 1:55.403 +0.097
3 7 Brazil Nelson Piquet Brabham-BMW 1:56.643 1:55.648 +0.342
4 27 Italy Michele Alboreto Ferrari 1:56.999 1:56.021 +0.715
5 28 Sweden Stefan Johansson Ferrari 1:56.585 1:56.746 +1.279
6 18 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Arrows-BMW 1:59.046 1:56.697 +1.391
7 5 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Williams-Honda 1:56.727 1:56.996 +1.421
8 17 Austria Gerhard Berger Arrows-BMW 1:56.770 +1.464
9 11 Italy Elio de Angelis Lotus-Renault 1:58.852 1:57.322 +2.016
10 6 Finland Keke Rosberg Williams-Honda 1:57.582 1:57.465 +2.159
11 19 Italy Teo Fabi Toleman-Hart 1:57.588 1:57.857 +2.282
12 8 Switzerland Marc Surer Brabham-BMW 2:00.154 1:57.729 +2.423
13 15 France Patrick Tambay Renault 1:58.105 1:59.335 +2.799
14 16 United Kingdom Derek Warwick Renault 1:59.761 1:58.407 +3.101
15 22 Italy Riccardo Patrese Alfa Romeo 1:59.703 1:58.414 +3.108
16 20 Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani Toleman-Hart 1:58.820 1:58.706 +3.400
17 26 France Jacques Laffite Ligier-Renault 2:01.745 1:58.933 +3.627
18 25 France Philippe Streiff Ligier-Renault 2:00.599 1:59.245 +3.939
19 23 United States Eddie Cheever Alfa Romeo 2:00.861 1:59.370 +4.064
20 9 France Philippe Alliot RAM-Hart 1:59.626 1:59.755 +4.320
21 3 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Tyrrell-Renault 2:00.950 2:01.364 +5.644
22 30 West Germany Christian Danner Zakspeed 2:05.059 2:07.046 +9.753
23 24 Netherlands Huub Rothengatter Osella-Alfa Romeo 2:06.083 2:05.776 +10.470
24 29 Italy Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Motori Moderni 2:06.007 2:06.606 +10.701

Race

Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 12 Brazil Ayrton Senna Lotus-Renault 43 1:34:19.893 2 9
2 5 United Kingdom Nigel Mansell Williams-Honda 43 + 28.422 7 6
3 2 France Alain Prost McLaren-TAG 43 + 55.109 1 4
4 6 Finland Keke Rosberg Williams-Honda 43 + 1:15.290 10 3
5 7 Brazil Nelson Piquet Brabham-BMW 42 + 1 Lap 3 2
6 16 United Kingdom Derek Warwick Renault 42 + 1 Lap 14 1
7 17 Austria Gerhard Berger Arrows-BMW 42 + 1 Lap 8  
8 8 Switzerland Marc Surer Brabham-BMW 42 + 1 Lap 12  
9 25 France Philippe Streiff Ligier-Renault 42 + 1 Lap 18  
10 18 Belgium Thierry Boutsen Arrows-BMW 40 Gearbox 6  
11 26 France Jacques Laffite Ligier-Renault 38 Accident 17  
12 29 Italy Pierluigi Martini Minardi-Motori Moderni 38 + 5 Laps 24  
13 3 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Tyrrell-Renault 38 + 5 Laps 21  
NC 24 Netherlands Huub Rothengatter Osella-Alfa Romeo 37 + 6 Laps 23  
Ret 22 Italy Riccardo Patrese Alfa Romeo 31 Engine 15  
Ret 23 United States Eddie Cheever Alfa Romeo 26 Gearbox 19  
Ret 15 France Patrick Tambay Renault 24 Gearbox 13  
Ret 19 Italy Teo Fabi Toleman-Hart 23 Throttle 11  
Ret 11 Italy Elio de Angelis Lotus-Renault 17 Turbo 9  
Ret 30 West Germany Christian Danner Zakspeed 16 Gearbox 22  
Ret 9 France Philippe Alliot RAM-Hart 10 Accident 20  
Ret 28 Sweden Stefan Johansson Ferrari 7 Spun Off 5  
Ret 20 Italy Piercarlo Ghinzani Toleman-Hart 7 Accident 16  
Ret 27 Italy Michele Alboreto Ferrari 3 Clutch 4  
DNS 1 Austria Niki Lauda McLaren-TAG Driver Injured
Source:[6]

Championship standings after the race

  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h Cooper, Adam (26 March 2020). "The only other time F1 called off a race". motorsport.com. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d Williamson, Martin (9 April 2010). "The race that never was". ESPN. Archived from the original on 2 February 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  3. ^ a b "Grand Prix Result: Belgian GP, Spa-Francorchamps, 1985". GrandPrix.com. Archived from the original on 1 November 2001. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  4. ^ a b Jenkinson, Denis (October 1985). "The Belgian Grand Prix – Touch and Go". Motor Sport. LXI (10): 1080–1083. Retrieved 26 March 2020.
  5. ^ "YouTube - Senna wins at Spa 1985 and drives around the Marshalls". Archived from the original on 2009-10-05. Retrieved 2009-10-03.
  6. ^ "1985 Belgian Grand Prix". formula1.com. Archived from the original on 18 February 2014. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  7. ^ a b "Belgium 1985 - Championship • STATS F1". www.statsf1.com. Retrieved 12 March 2019.


Previous race:
1985 Italian Grand Prix
FIA Formula One World Championship
1985 season
Next race:
1985 European Grand Prix
Previous race:
1984 Belgian Grand Prix
Belgian Grand Prix Next race:
1986 Belgian Grand Prix
This page was last edited on 15 June 2021, at 10:57
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