The 1999 Belgian Grand Prix, otherwise known as the LVII Foster's Grand Prix de Belgique, was the twelfth round of the 1999 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps in Spa, Belgium, on the 29 August 1999. The race would see McLaren-Mercedes resist the temptation to swap their drivers late on, as David Coulthard claimed victory ahead of title pretending teammate Mika Häkkinen.
Häkkinen had, as ever, been the man to beat in qualifying, with the Finn securing his tenth pole position of the campaign. Coulthard duly lined-up in second, ahead of the two Jordan-Mugen-Hondas, while Championship leader Eddie Irvine could only muster sixth behind Ralf Schumacher.
Raceday dawned dry and warm, a stark contrast to the horrendous conditions twelve months before that had proved the catalyst for the huge first lap accident. The two McLarens were in a league of their own, while Irvine barely on the pace of the Jordans.
Yet, when it came to the race itself it seemed as if Häkkinen had lost a bit of focus, for a poor start would gift Coulthard the chance to joust with his teammate for the lead into La Source. The Scot duly elbowed his way past, Häkkinen not expecting his teammate to fight to hard, with the Finn furious for being attacked by his wingman.
Regardless, the two McLarens quickly disappeared up the road from the rest of the field, in a race which proved rather tepid in spite of some early promise. Indeed, Irvine would find himself in an intense fight with Frentzen, the two Williams-Supertecs and Hill, although that group would quickly spread apart during the early stages.
The pit stops came and went without issue, with Häkkinen losing more time behind Ralf Schumacher, while Coulthard pitted without dropping out of the lead. Indeed, so lack lustre was the Finn's pace in the second half of the race that the McLaren crew signalled "Push" on his pitboard, although Häkkinen continued to lap a few tenths of a second slower than his teammate.
Likewise, there was very little action behind, with Frentzen able to keep Irvine at bay, while Schuamcher had dropped out of the fight having opted for a one-stop. Hill also lost time battling with Mika Salo in the second Ferrari, who had already caused a stir by deliberately blocking Schumacher when the German was attempting to pass his teammate Irvine.
Out front, meanwhile, Coulthard would cruise across the line to claim victory, while an unusually angry Häkkinen claimed second, refusing to shake his teammate's hand. Frentzen was a distant third ahead of Irvine, while Schumacher and Hill secured the remaining points.
The results meant that Häkkinen moved into the lead of the Championship by a single point, while McLaren-Mercedes overhauled Ferrari in the Constructors.
A fourth win of the season for Mika Häkkinen ensured that the Finnish ace left Hungary with his title hopes greatly enhanced, having carved into the gap between himself and the Championship leader. Indeed, Eddie Irvine had seen his advantage cut to just two points after his late relegation down the field, with the Ulsterman also beginning to show the strains of fighting for the title. Behind, David Coulthard had moved up into third ahead of Heinz-Harald Frentzen, bumping Michael Schumacher down to fifth.
In the Constructors Championship McLaren-Mercedes had delivered another strong blow to Ferrari, with their one-two enhancing their tally to 90 points. Only Irvine's third place finish kept the Scuderia ahead, with Ferrari holding onto the remains of a four point lead over their Anglo-German rivals. Behind, Jordan-Mugen-Honda were in an increasingly lonely third ahead of Williams-Supertec, while Benetton-Playlife completed the top five.
The full entry list for the 1999 Belgian Grand Prix is outlined below:
The full qualifying results for the 1999 Belgian Grand Prix are outlined below:
|1||1||Mika Häkkinen||McLaren-Mercedes||1:50.329||—||227.364 km/h|
|2||2||David Coulthard||McLaren-Mercedes||1:50.484||+0.155s||227.045 km/h|
|3||8||Heinz-Harald Frentzen||Jordan-Mugen-Honda||1:51.332||+1.003s||225.315 km/h|
|4||7||Damon Hill||Jordan-Mugen-Honda||1:51.372||+1.043s||225.234 km/h|
|5||6||Ralf Schumacher||Williams-Supertec||1:51.414||+1.085s||225.149 km/h|
|6||4||Eddie Irvine||Ferrari||1:51.895||+1.566s||224.182 km/h|
|7||16||Rubens Barrichello||Stewart-Ford Cosworth||1:51.974||+1.645s||224.023 km/h|
|8||5||Alex Zanardi||Williams-Supertec||1:52.014||+1.685s||223.943 km/h|
|9||3||Mika Salo||Ferrari||1:52.124||+1.795s||223.724 km/h|
|10||17||Johnny Herbert||Stewart-Ford Cosworth||1:52.164||+1.835s||223.644 km/h|
|11||22||Jacques Villeneuve||BAR-Supertec||1:52.235||+1.906s||223.502 km/h|
|12||19||Jarno Trulli||Prost-Peugeot||1:52.644||+2.315s||222.691 km/h|
|13||9||Giancarlo Fisichella||Benetton-Playlife||1:52.762||+2.433s||222.458 km/h|
|14||23||Ricardo Zonta||BAR-Supertec||1:52.840||+2.511s||222.304 km/h|
|15||10||Alexander Wurz||Benetton-Playlife||1:52.847||+2.518s||222.290 km/h|
|16||11||Jean Alesi||Sauber-Petronas||1:52.921||+2.592s||222.145 km/h|
|17||18||Olivier Panis||Prost-Peugeot||1:53.148||+2.819s||221.699 km/h|
|18||12||Pedro Diniz||Sauber-Petronas||1:53.778||+3.449s||220.471 km/h|
|19||15||Tora Takagi||Arrows||1:54.099||+3.770s||219.851 km/h|
|20||20||Luca Badoer||Minardi-Ford Cosworth||1:54.197||+3.868s||219.663 km/h|
|21||21||Marc Gené||Minardi-Ford Cosworth||1:54.557||+4.228s||218.972 km/h|
|22||14||Pedro de la Rosa||Arrows||1:54.579||+4.250s||218.930 km/h|
|107% Time: 1:58.052|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car to set their best time in that session.
- Bold indicates a driver's best/qualifying time.
|Pedro de la Rosa||______________|
The full results for the 1999 Belgian Grand Prix are outlined below:
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
- 75th Grand Prix entry for Mika Salo.
- Twentieth pole position for Mika Häkkinen.
- Sixth career victory for David Coulthard.
- McLaren scored their 122nd win as a constructor.
Mika Häkkinen moved to the top of the Championship with second place in Belgium, although the Finn believed he should have won had it not been for his teammate's barge at the start. Regardless, he would leave Spa with a one point advantage over former leader Eddie Irvine, who had minimised the damage to his title hopes by finishing fourth. Those two were thirteen clear of David Coulthard in third, with the Scot an outside shot for the crown alongside Heinz-Harald Frentzen, twenty behind in fourth.
In the Constructors Championship a second one-two for McLaren-Mercedes in as many races had carried them to the top of the pack, leaving Spa on 106 points. That translated into a nine point lead over Ferrari, who were pushing lead driver Michael Schumacher to return as they battled for their first crown since 1983. Behind, third placed Jordan-Mugen-Honda were still mathematically in the hunt, although with 50 points between themselves and Ferrari their realistic hopes were non-existent.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Images and Videos:
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 'Belgian GP, 1999', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), https://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr642.html, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
- ↑ 'Belgium 1999: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1999/belgique/engages.aspx, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 'Belgium 1999: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1999/belgique/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
- ↑ '1999 Foster's Belgian Grand Prix - QUALIFYING', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1999/races/698/belgium/qualifying-0.html, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
- ↑ 'Belgium 1999: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1999/belgique/classement.aspx, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 '1999 Belgian GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2014), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1999&gp=Belgian%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 '12. Belgium 1999', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1999/belgique.aspx, (Accessed 28/08/2019)
|V T E||Belgian Grand Prix|
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