Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes, Spa-Francorchamps, 2020

Rate the race: 2020 Belgian Grand Prix

2020 Belgian Grand Prix

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What did you think of today’s race? Share your verdict on the Belgian Grand Prix.

RaceFans has held polls on every F1 race since 2008 to find out which fans thought of each round of the season.

Join in the latest poll and give your verdict on the race: 10 being the highest and 1 the lowest. Please vote based on how entertaining and exciting you thought the race was, not on how your preferred driver or team performed.

What were the best and worst moments of the race? What was the main thing you’ll remember about it? Rate the race out of ten and leave a comment below:

Rate the 2020 Belgian Grand Prix out of 10

  • 10 (1%)
  • 9 (1%)
  • 8 (4%)
  • 7 (10%)
  • 6 (18%)
  • 5 (18%)
  • 4 (17%)
  • 3 (15%)
  • 2 (8%)
  • 1 (8%)

Total Voters: 288

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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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112 comments on “Rate the race: 2020 Belgian Grand Prix”

  1. It’s hard to make a Spa race boring but Mercedes did it again! Worst Spa F1 race I’ve seen in 25 years.
    Giving it a “1” because there’s no “minus 7” rating possible.

    1. Agree, gave it 2 cause I admit I lost quite a few “interesting” points in the race due to it being so boring I wasn’t as careful as I usually am.

  2. proud_asturian
    30th August 2020, 15:40

    Mercedes killing sport.

    1. Nope. Other teams are killing the sport by being rubbish. If anything Ferrari are killing the sport. How can they be that bad?

    2. Yes, how dare they ruin the sport by being better than the other teams. Let’s blame the team that got it right rather than the ones that dropped the ball.

    3. Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren, Renault, etc. killing sport for failing to keep up with Mercedes

      1. aezy_doc and @nikkit beat me to it!

    4. Hahaha joker.

    5. I still don’t understand this sentiment. Are people bored when dominant competitors win in other sports? It’s difficult to get to the top of F1, let alone stay there. Is there no appreciation for the professionalism?

      1. Yes people are bored. And viewership numbers prove it time and time again in any sport with prolonged dynasties. No one is questioning professionalism, they are questioning the lack of spectacle. Even on an enthusiast site such as this you are seeing waning interest and low ratings. What do you think the casual viewers think which represent the bread and butter majority of the TV audience?

        1. Everyone gets that. But why is everybody after Mercedes? Aren’t they just doing their job? Why don’t they rage over Ferrari and Red Bull being complacent? It’s like trying to blame Usain Bolt for ‘killing’ 100m dash.

          1. @rockgod

            Mercedes did the best job leading up to 2014 and have been able to keep that lead ever since. That is too long.

          2. @aapje Why have the rest of the teams been letting the Mercs keep that lead for past 7 years? It’s not like Red Bull and Ferrari lack funds.

          3. @rockgod

            Apparently, the engine formula doesn’t allow for other teams to overtake.

      2. Yes, I think people are always bored with dominance, regardless of the sport.

        Otherwise why do we all love wet races? Unpredictability is why we watch sport, not to bask in admiration of 7 years of dominance.

      3. petebaldwin (@)
        30th August 2020, 17:41

        @tommy-c – Can you think of another sport where one person/team has been as dominant as Mercedes and has been for over half a decade?

        1. 90s Bulls with Jordan

          1. @luigismen. Nope. 6 titles in 8 years, and that’s if you don’t count all the building years. Merc is 6 for 6 and will be 8 for 8 before the new spec. And I highly doubt they will fall of then.

        2. Man Utd in 90s to 00s. Bayern Munich in 00s. Rangers in 80s-90s. CeltI 90s to 2010s. Moh Farah 2005-2015….the list is endless.

    6. If anything the development restrictions are killing the sport and will continue to do so. It’s quite clear that if a team gets it right from the start and continue to make good decisions, they won’t be caught.

    7. Ristrictionism and terrible rule-making is killing the “sport” (it isn’t even a sport it is an engineering contest).

  3. 6/10. LH too good, its so frustrating that Bottas is in the 2nd car. Ricciardo with a super drive, Ocon, Norris & Pierre Gasly done very good drives too. DRS i think is a bit overpowered here. Ferrari have hit rock bottom. It all needs ripping up & starting again

    1. Sums it up quite aptly, yeah.

      Good thing we got to see some dicing for position in the midfield to keep us entertained a bit, up front it really was settled after qualifying.

    2. 2/10. Yaaaaaaaawwwwwwn!!!

      1. Cars nose to tail through eau rouge nudging 300kph makes you yawn?

        1. It does when there’s no competition for the podium positions.

    3. Needed the rain that never showed up. The midfield was the most interesting part and got decent coverage.

  4. Ham-Bot-Ver. Rinse and Repeat.

  5. A decent race, although could’ve been better.

  6. 3.
    Failure. Again and again.

    1. Yes a 3 seems fair!

      1. Yep, a solid 3/10. An all around turgid affair

  7. Absolute disaster for Max with Gasley getting Driver of the Day.

    1. What are you on about?
      Gasly did a good effort, didn’t see much from Verstappen – but solid

    2. I’m sorry, what did Max exactly do to deserve DotD? The fact he is not Lewis does not qualify.

  8. 5/10. Could have been so much more.

    DRS on Kemmel straight must be one of the worst brainfarts in modern F1.

    1. Much too powerful

    2. Coventry Climax
      31st August 2020, 0:30

      I absolutely agree on how you feel about DRS, @HUHHII. However, the biggest brainfart -to my opinion- is not DRS itself, but the restrictions and regulations on it. That stinker came from the FIA. If only they’d let each driver decide for themselves when and where to use it, so, independent of where they are on track and independent of how close they are to one another. Give total control back to the driver, and we can see -and appreciate- real driver skills again. Overtaking used to be one of them, but has been put to the grave, thanks to the FIA.

  9. Far out it’s sad to see ferrari in the state it is. It’s going to be even tougher next weekend I suspect. Fantastic to see the Renaults up there. I can’t help but feel Daniel could have been on for a podium if he’d started pushing a little earlier. It was pretty clear Max had nothing left. I will never get bored of watching F1 cars around Spa. Absolutely astonishing.

  10. 4/10
    1 each for Daniel, Pierre, Esteban and Kimi (for finishing ahead of both Ferraris)

    1. Coventry Climax
      31st August 2020, 0:37

      In that case, I’d give it 1/10. 1 for the priceless moment Kimi overtook Seb. Otherwise completely uneventful race. And with ‘events’ I don’t mean crashes and such. Once we start giving points for that, the sport is really dead.

  11. Boring, start to finish. Even people being on different strategies didn’t help, as they just carved their way through, seemingly without effort.

  12. 4/10

    5/10 minus one for DRS, it doesn’t just make a forgone pass, drivers just don’t try to devise anything else for the whole lap. I think we had one pass into the chicane? Otherwise, just wait for Kemmel…

  13. Josh (@canadianjosh)
    30th August 2020, 15:47

    Bottas is great at not giving Lewis problems as Nico Rosberg occasionally did but unfortunately for us it creates dull racing especially since the Mercedes is a dominant as it is.

    1. Josh (@canadianjosh)
      30th August 2020, 15:48


      1. Bottas just isn’t good enough to trouble Hamilton. He is just a very good number 2 driver

        1. It’s not just the fact he isn’t good enough it’s also that when an opportunity does arise he doesn’t even think about taking it. He has no racing instinct at all

          1. That I really couldnt agree with any more, he seems to not want to take risks or try anything different to challenge Hamilton

  14. I did not see many interesting overtakes, not even in the midfield. Just DRS highway passes. DRS killed a wonderful track.

    1. It’s not because there were no overtakes, it’s because the TV director seemed to be wearing his facemask over his eyes or something. :(

  15. 1
    F1 better hope 2022 delivers or that will be the end of F1.
    Another season and a half of Mercedes domination to look forward to till then.

  16. I’ve been saying this every year since 2011 but the Kemmel straight should not be a DRS zone as it’s been far too powerful there every year.

    These cars produce a fairly powerful slipstream & we see on the laps after the start/restarts that the racing is better on that part of the track without DRS due to how effective the slipstream is. Without DRS you actually see some good battling into the braking zone, With DRS a vast majority of the ‘overtakes’ are far too easy.

    Put DRS in places where overtaking was marginal in the past to help open up overtaking opportunities that didn’t exist before, Don’t put it in places where we already saw a lot of overtaking as all that does is make it far too easy.

    1. Coventry Climax
      31st August 2020, 0:44

      Racing is better on any part of any circuit without DRS.
      Or, as I’ve stated before, allow drivers to use it wherever and whenever they want, independent of where on track they are and independent of how close they are to one another. Racing skills, that’s what we want to see, right?

      1. How about your free to use it anywhere, but certain sections eg Kemmel it is banned?

        1. Coventry Climax
          1st September 2020, 1:38

          When everybody will be using it on Kemmel Straight, the first thought is it won’t make a difference. However, the boys will close it sooner than the men. And/or the “think they are man, but are not so talented” will spin off. Again: Racing skills. Let drivers decide for themselves when and where to use it.

  17. 6

    Started out interesting enough with lots of midfield action, but dropped off too much following the safety car. Pulls back some points for Gasly making an initially strange strategy work and both Renaults excelling.

    Plus one extra point for Kimi overtaking Seb. I’ve been a Kimi fan for years and there was a little joy at seeing him go past his former teammate.

    Cannot fault Mercedes or their drivers. It’s just that as good as Bottas has become, Hamilton is just better and continues to get better. Verstappen too, a faultless, if lonely race, but could only really keep the Mercs honest at best.

    Ferrari, worst result yet. Doesn’t bod well for the remainder of the season. The Italian races in front of the Tifosi are going to be an absolute embarassment for them at this rate. Fortunately, all the red will help hide the shame

    1. It’s just that as good as Bottas has become, Hamilton is just better and continues to get better

      HAM = tier1 driver, BOT = tier2 driver. BOT is lacking the ”killer instinct” related to competition + own team, also consistency in order to be a tier1 driver.

  18. The crash happened sadly on a bad moment. That made far too many move to the same strategy. Would be great if it was either earlier of later. Added to that it made RIC be too close with the low drag Renault (great job, bring on monza) for RBR to take on mediums at say lap 30-32. There mas more in it

  19. 5. Crash happened a bit too early. Sad, because Spa is probably a track where a 2-stop strategy could’ve worked due to DRS/Kemmel. But it turned into a boring tyre-saving affair.

    1. Edit : The crash happened either a bit too early OR a bit too late (making a 1-stop with a long stint on Hard viable for pretty much every team, save maybe RP)

    2. I voted six. I agree with your comment that the safety car came at the wrong time and neutralized another wise better race. So five for that. but I figure spa gets a point just for being a great track, so six overall.

    3. Coventry Climax
      31st August 2020, 0:49

      Ridiculous that a crash can make or break a race. This shows things aren’t as they should. DRS, tire-quality, fuel-restrictions and energy-saving, heavy cars and probably forgot a couple, but take your pick.

  20. Ugh, I voted 1, this was beyond boring. Safety Car didn’t spice thing ups, it just made the race more boring, as Mercedes and Red Bull had to do massive tyre management thanks to their high downforce setups and lack of confidence in the Pirelli’s. Was hoping Red Bull tried a 2-stopper and force Mercedes to push, but no.

  21. 3, Had more interesting Lyft rides, Ferrari need to get their act together.. or kick out the two drivers before Monza.

    1. Dont think the drivers are the problems

      1. I assure, it’s not the drivers. I think it’s time for Ferrari to learn about aerodynamics…

        1. Coventry Climax
          31st August 2020, 0:53

          Oh, they know about aerodynamics alright, but built there car with the idea they would have a powerful engine. And then suddenly they had to strike a deal with the FIA about their engine, so now they have a horrible mismatch between the aerodynamics and the power of their car.

    2. Er, you think it’s the drivers??!!

      You did see a Ferrari going full pelt on a straight and an Alfa overtaking it with the same engine right? My Gran could do what Kimi did……and beat Max lol.

  22. This was the dullest races of the year so far. I did a small nap and nothing happened =)

  23. 4.

    Without the SC, VER would have been 1 pit-stop behind HAM. Not-a-real-chance!

    BOT attacked HAM too soon after 1st corner and had to lift to prevent a contact with HAM, while heading to Eau Rouge. Kinda lucky he managed to keep it ahead of VER on the Kemmel straight.

    They didn’t show, how come BOT managed to keep it ahead VER at the pit-stop since Mercedes pitted both cars at the same time?

    The only good part: RIC got FL.

    1. @mg1982, the pitstops where shown live; Bottas was already stopping when Verstappen passed by and when they released Verstappen, Bottas was passing already. The fact they are putting under SC allows minimum to none time loss when double-stacking

    2. @mg1982 Ver was around 4 seconds behind Bottas before the safety car came out so even with some time loss from double stacking it wasn’t enough to get him ahead.

    3. Verstappen was 3 seconds or so behind Bottas coming in to the pits. They came out almost on top of each other as merc stacked and Bottas’s stop was 1 sec slower than Ves. Wasn’t quite enough.

  24. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    30th August 2020, 16:15

    I thought last week’s was bad but this was even more boring. It’s just not very exciting to watch anymore. Like I’m not expecting a heartstopping race every weekend but some excitement would be nice. When we’re sitting there begging Bottas to do something because literally nobody else has a machine capable, begging for rain, begging for a ‘late surprise’, begging for tyres to fall off, begging for *something* there’s a problem.

    I do think Mercedes dominance is killing the sport stone dead. There’s so little fight, so little competition. I don’t necessarily blame Mercedes for that – I blame the rules and the financial disparities, so maybe the rule change will help? Until then I’m not sure where that leaves us. Unless you’re a Mercedes fan, in which case I’m sure this is wonderful but for everyone else? Cure for insomnia.

    1. Financial disparity? Ask Ferrari

  25. 4/10 from me
    The safety car effectively neutralised the race. But that is part of the unpredictability.

  26. Roll on 2022….

  27. F1 for the purists.
    Time trial of the fastest car to the slowest car with little to no variation.
    Why the sudden low ratings and hate?

    1. Awareness of the fact that 90 minutes of tyre management makes for a very boring race?

      1. Grip management is the pathos of racing.
        Do you want to give them tyres with unlimited life? How would the result be any different?
        If you are new to F1, rain affected races are rated highest despite the tyre grip management involved.

        1. If you’re new to F1, you’re probably not used to a dash of unpredictability.

    2. Even purists enjoy unpredictability, close racing between cars, and driving to the limit. This race had very little of any of that, since most drivers had to nurture their tyres for the long stint on hards, and any racing was nullified by ridiculously powerful and uneccessary drs.

      1. Increasing grip will increase unpredictability?
        And without DRS gimmick, all of them would be saving their tyres.
        When fake DRS does actually produce wheel to wheel battles, no one complains.

        1. You’re right about drs – people in general don’t complain when it produces good racing. That doesn’t mean you should apply it the same way on every circuit. I happen to agree that drs is a necessary evil until they build cars that can follow each other more closely, but I also don’t like when it’s obviously too powerful on one track or zone. In the whole race I saw two overtakes which weren’t with drs on Kemal straight – Gasly on Perez and Albon round the outside of final chicane. Drivers won’t even attempt other overtakes if one zone gives a free overtake. Most successful overtakes were also completed before the braking zone, not just getting cars alongside as intended. This race would have been better with either no drs on Kemmel straight or a greatly reduced zone.

        2. Coventry Climax
          31st August 2020, 1:06

          Which races did DRS produce wheel to wheel battles, then?
          It’s ridiculous anyone outside of the car determines whether a tool in/on the car is available or not. They might as well have electronically limited the amount of gears, the throttle, steering or whatever, on certain parts of the track. It’s a farce and nothing else.

  28. Neil (@neilosjames)
    30th August 2020, 16:31

    The strategic variation provided a little bit of interest in the midfield, and it was nice to see some strong individual performances – Hamilton, Ricciardo, Gasly in particular stood out. But overall, it was pretty poor… the only thing that might have passed for ‘excitement’ up front was waiting to see if someone’s tyre failed, and to me that’s anything but exciting.

    Gave it a 5.

  29. It was a better race than what we saw on television! Was it the regular TV director that contracted COVID?
    Why follow the Ferrari in 14th place when there’s passing happening for points positions?
    I’d be curious to know the “pass count” for the race and the number that were shown live during the broadcast.

  30. Safety car came out at a very unfortunate moment. But otherwise I enjoyed many battles in the midfield. Good race!

  31. I don’t mind Mercedes winning everything – I’m willing Lewis to beat Michaels records, I want the sport I love to have an actual sportsman holding the records.
    Shame Redbull can’t find those last 3-4 tenths to make it really interesting, but you can’t have everything. The midfield battle was awesome today, it really was. I’d written Perez and Gasly off mid race, but boy did they deliver. Ricciardo too.

    Then come Williams and Ferrari. Williams appear to be on an upward trend, but Ferrari are in actual danger of being the slowest car around Monza next weekend.

    I gave it a 5, but just talked myself into a 7.

  32. I could watch every lap without dropping asleep, and some overtaking so 6.

  33. 3.

    Spec series NOW!

    1. Go watch F2, or Indy if that is what you want – and leave F1 to those of us that appreciate something a little more complex.

      1. That was about as complex as a line of ducks in a row, and yeah I sure will be watching the IndyCar race later, you sound like a Linux Graybeard.

        1. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
          30th August 2020, 18:43

          Looking forward to the Indy. Always rice to watch some racing after a quali session

          1. Indeed, MotoAmerica Superbikes on later too……

        2. That was about as complex as a line of ducks in a row

          The trace was dull, and there was little to it which was complex.

          However, it’s three sport which is complex, and a spec series would kill they. Keeping track of who is doing what, which updates have been made and how effective they are etc make F1 what it is.

          F1 is not, has never been and should never be only about what happens on the track. They need to do something to improve the show (this was one of the most boring reaches over ever had the misfortune of wasting an afternoon watching), but making it a spec series is not it.

  34. I quit watching before the halfway stage.

  35. petebaldwin (@)
    30th August 2020, 17:44

    I didn’t see much after the safety restart because I gave up and decided to paint my bathroom instead. Did I miss anything that is worth searching for highlights for and brings this race up from the 2 or 3 it was when I left it?

  36. I hate to use the word boring, but come on. This race was not exciting.

    And remember in 2010 or 2011 when the FIA said they would evaluate the DRS zones and adjust them? Well, we’ve had nine years of “Kemmel motorway”, and no changes to the utterly needless DRS zone that enables cars to just woosh past.

  37. Problem is not just mercedes being quick, it’s the lack of competition from another driver in the team. Rosberg beat Ham atleast 40% of the time and we had some great races.

    You just have to enjoy the midfield – which is great this year.

    I’m also convinced that Mclaren will do really well with a merc engine next year, Lando and Ricciardo.

  38. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
    30th August 2020, 18:40

    Eugh. Half 6 and I just woke up on the sofa with a dead arm. So boring it ruined my whole Sunday.

  39. 1 not good race

  40. 1. Another race to forget. Of course it is nice to see these fantastic cars speeding around one of the best circuits in the world, and driven by excellent drivers.
    But from the point of view of the excitement of watching a race where the protagonists must strive to reach the top positions, it is frustrating.
    Every day there are more fans who do not see the entire race, only the summaries in the news, despite what the circus owners say.
    Very sad.

  41. 5. Dull race. Even the sole incident between Gio and Russell was boring. The midfield had been the saviour of a couple races this year but not so much this time.

  42. 6. I still enjoyed it. Think of the uneventful laps as a zen-like state of contemplation. Sure Spa can be thrilling. Just not one of those days.

  43. Probably would have been a whole heap better if the safety car had been later.

    Once the early safety car appeared and pretty much everyone had bolted on new tires WAY early, it became a case of managing tyres and not even attempting to race. Even RBR played it safe and didn’t put Max for a second set.

    Maybe they need to close the pits for tyre changes when the safety car is brought out and force the teams to actually do things differently.

    Fortunately there was a lot going on from 4th back – otherwise this race would have been truly awful.

  44. 4. Easily one of the most lacklustre Belgian GPs in a while, only the tracks spectacular nature boosting it from an even lower score. The top 7 finished where they started, no? No battles for any position near the front, plus a horrible Ferrari being slower than the Alfas, made this race one not to remember.

    DRS was extremely powerful, as always, enabling drivers to pass way before the braking zone. That ruins the fun. Did we see any actual overtakes, except for DRS assisted straight line “pass-before-the-braking-zone” moves? I don’t think so.

    1. Gasly did the only memorable pass through eau rouge. Very exiting stuff, but apart from that, de-nada.

  45. What does the spectator expect in a race, when the starting grid places the fastest cars/drivers at the front of the field ? A parade is a good reply. Spa, 2020: Grade 2.

    DRS is a gimmick, where a pass is accomplished without any driving talent.

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