2011 Belgian Grand Prix race weekend programme

2011 Belgian Grand Prix

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Have all the important information for this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix at your fingertips with the F1 Fanatic race programme:

The race weekend

2011 Belgian Grand Prix preview – Spa promises close fight at classic track

What F1 Fanatics say about… Spa – Thoughts on the venue from the people who know what it’s really like

2011 F1 championship points – Full drivers and teams points standings heading into this weekend’s race.


Bruno Senna has taken Nick Heidfeld’s place at Renault:

The following changes to the usual driver line-up will be made for first practice only:

Nico Hulkenberg will drive Adrian Sutil’s car at Force India.


Pirelli have brought the medium (white) and soft tyres (yellow) for this weekend’s race.

Spa-Francorchamps features some of the most demanding corners for tyres, as shown in this video:


Nigel Mansell is the drivers’ adviser to the stewards for this weekend’s race.

The 1992 world champion joins Swiss motor club president Paul Gutjahr and Italian Motor Sport Commission member Paolo Longoni on the stewards’ panel.

The track

Spa-Francorchamps, 2011 Belgian Grand Prix

Spa is the longest and, in the opinion of several drivers, best track on the calendar.

The drivers spend much of the early part of the lap flat-out, including the hair-raising plunge and crest of Eau Rouge. Mercedes explain the particular challenges of this famous piece of tarmac:

Le Raidillon de l’Eau Rouge is reduced to three simple corner numbers on the official map of the Spa-Francorchamps circuit: turns two, three and four.

Turn two, the left-hand kink which crosses the bridge over the creek named Eau Rouge, is taken at 306 kph, with a lateral G-force of 2.4G; turn three, the right-handed uphill sweep, at 303 kph with a lateral G-force of 4G; and turn four, the left-hander over the crest, at 296 kph with a lateral G-force of 2G.

The cars also undergo significant vertical loadings through this section: a vertical force of -1.7G in the compression at the bottom of the hill and +1G over the crest. Although the section is taken flat-out, the cars lose approximately 10 kph through the sequence.

The series of corners is 535m long (7.6% of the lap distance) and is negotiated in 6.4s (6.1% of the 2010 pole time). The sequence from La Source to Les Combes, including the Raidillon, lasts for 23.5s and is the longest full throttle sequence of the entire season.

This upward vertical acceleration of 1G effectively means the car is weightless as it goes over the crest; contact with the road is therefore assured by downforce alone, and not the weight of the car. However, at such speeds, the downforce generated is approximately 2.5 times car weight.

The drivers return to the start line by way of a second long, flat-out blast. Before that they tackle the high-speed challenges of Pouhon and Blanchimont:

The other major high-speed challenges are Blanchimont (turn 17), which is taken flat-out at over 300 kph; and the double left-hander at Pouhon (turns 10 and 11), which are taken in fifth gear at 240 kph, with a lateral G-force of 3.75G. Pouhon is the longest corner on the circuit, lasting for a total of 7.8 seconds.

There are no significant changes to the configuration of the circuit this year. However the run-off at Rivage (where Lewis Hamilton went off during last year’s race) has been changed from gravel to asphalt.

FIA confirms Eau Rouge DRS ban at Spa – The FIA says it isn’t safe to use DRS at Eau Rouge.

FIA confirms DRS zone restrictions for Spa – Drivers can use DRS on the Kemmel straight during the race.

Changing tracks: Spa-Francorchamps – How Spa has changed since it hosted a race in the first year of the world championship.

Spa-Francorchamps – circuit information – Detailed track data including pit lane time loss, fastest laps and more.

The weather

Weather forecasts for Spa-Francorchamps are reliably unreliable. Rain showers can develop with little notice.

Rain is expected on Friday but the current forecasts say it will clear up after then:

2011 Belgian Grand Prix weather forecast – Wet start to Belgian Grand Prix weekend

Following the race live

F1 Fanatic Live will be open for your comments during every session.

Join us for every lap of the race, qualifying and practice at these times:

Friday 26th August 2011

Belgian Grand Prix Free Practice 1: 10:00-11:30 (UK time: 9:00-10:30)
Belgian Grand Prix Free Practice 2: 14:00-15:30 (UK time: 13:00-14:30)

Saturday 27th August 2011

Belgian Grand Prix Free Practice 3: 11:00-12:00 (UK time: 10:00-11:00)
Belgian Grand Prix Qualifying: 14:00 (UK time: 13:00)

Sunday 28th August 2011

Belgian Grand Prix: 14:00 (UK time: 13:00)

More session times and live coverage details here:

You can follow F1 Fanatic on Twitter for updates throughout the race weekend:

And you can use the F1 Fanatic Live Twitter app to get updates from the drivers, teams and media at the circuit:

2010 Belgian Grand Prix highlights

Mark Webber started from pole position but he was swamped at the first corner by Lewis Hamilton, Robert Kubica and Jenson Button.

He recovered to finish second behind Hamilton, while the other McLaren was taken out by Sebastian Vettel.

Kubica slipped to third after making a mistake during his pit stop. Fernando Alonso failed to score after crashing out of eighth place during a rain shower.

2010 Belgian Grand Prix review – Hamilton wins wet-weather thriller in Spa

Vettel apologises for Button crash – “I’m sorry, obviously it was not my intention to destroy his race or mine.”

Previous Belgian Grands Prix

2009 Belgian Grand Prix: Kimi Raikkonen edges Giancarlo Fisichella for win
2008 Belgian Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton is moral victor in Spa thriller
2007 Belgian Grand Prix: Raikkonen’s hat-track
2005 Belgian Grand Prix: Raikkonen wins rain-hit race
1999 Belgian Grand Prix: Coulthard holds Hakkinen back
1981 Belgian Grand Prix: F1???s fiasco at Zolder

Join in the 2011 F1 Fanatic Predictions Championship

There’s F1 races tickets DVDs and more to be won. Play for free by guessing the top five in each race.

You can enter and edit your predictions up to the start of qualifying on Saturday:

Image design by PJ Tierney

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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12 comments on “2011 Belgian Grand Prix race weekend programme”

  1. Wow thats a lot of info! Great article

    Keith could we see an iPad and iPhone app ever? Maybe advertise for a developer?

    Keep it up, good to have f1 back after what felt like years

    1. There’s one in development at the moment but there’s no set date for when it will be available.

      1. Or more like an Android app please (as there are more people with android phones than iOS)

        1. There is also an Android app in development. And that’s it for now. But I want to stress, these are not things that will be appearing any time soon.

          If you want to send your feedback or thoughts on what an app should include, please use the contact form:

          Contact F1 Fanatic

  2. Both of those videos are really nice. The sheer content of this article really does fit to how important Spa is for both fans and the drivers.

    Having it after the brake, makes it even better. I am just so much looking forward to it.

  3. Watched last years race last night. Vettel really did have a shocker. Looking forward to Sunday!

    1. They’re showing several races on the Red Button this week, far more than usual:

      Spa 1998
      Brazil 2001
      Brazil 2007
      Brazil 2008 (again…)
      Abu Dhabi 2010
      Spa 2010 (full highlights)

  4. Im sorry, but laying down asphault on the outside of Rivage is taking this whole safety thing way too far.

    May be petty to most, but for me this is a sad day for Formula 1.

    1. Well generally speaking gravel is the safest approach, it slows the cars down quicker.

      1. Not necessarily, gravel is pretty good at stopping a spinning car that can dig in. Problems with gravel is that depending on how you hit it, you can take off or flip.

        Also if you go straight into it it’s useless – you just skate over the top and you have no control you are a passenger. The best kind is that super grippy stuff they use now that stops the cars quickly. Of course the downfall to all of this as I think Hamish is trying to get at is that people can make a mistake and just drive back on – it takes some of the bravery and talent out of it.

        1. Well, even if it takes off or flips all over the place, it’s still slowing down! ;)

Comments are closed.