In the formula, the World Cup is open again after Sebastian Vettel’s victory in Belgium.
The German currently dominates the scene in his Ferrari.
His rival Lewis Hamilton speaks of “tricks” in the opponent – he does not mean that meant evil.
By Philipp Schneider, Spa-Francorchamps
The apparently helpless man in white overalls was still wearing his helmet. So it was not so easy to see that he was at a loss. Nobody could look into his eyes. But as clearly as he positioned himself, tilting his head to the ground, as if the weight of his helmet were pulling him down, his arms crossed behind his back, as if he knew he would have to stare for a while longer To unveil the mystery of the red race car right in front of him, it all looked as if the man in the white jumpsuit was stunned with bewilderment after the race at Spa-Francorchamps.
Of course, Lewis Hamilton knew right then that the pictures would go around the world. And he also knew that they would send a message: Hamilton immediately after the race and his critically scrutinizing look through his sights on his biggest opponent: the SF71H. Vettel’s Ferrari. Hamilton did not stare at the driver. He stared at his car. Shortly thereafter he spoke the sentence: “You have a few tricks in the car!”
Hamilton’s message was: Here is a four-time world champion wrestling with another four-time world champion, but the fight is now very uneven. Because Vettel’s car with the presentation of the third stage of the engine of the Mercedes of Hamilton still further hurried. “I can not always do miracles,” Hamilton said. “We just have to work harder.”
We, that sounded like the whole team. Above all, these were the engineers who had given Hamilton a superior car in the garage over the past four years, since the introduction of the hybrid engine in Formula One. And now, after three titles from Hamilton and one from Nico Rosberg in a row, the red race car, which was faster in the previous races, was much faster for the first time. Was that the turn? “We have a good car that now works everywhere,” said Vettel.
A charming understatement. There are two pictures from this race at Spa-Francorchamps, where Vettel reduced the deficit in the World Cup to 17 points with his victory over Hamilton, which will remain in the memory even longer. Once there is that of the terrible crash right after the start. It shows how the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg pushes the McLaren of Fernando Alonso in the hairpin “La Source” on the Sauber of Charles Leclerc, it shows a flying McLaren sailed so close to the cockpit of Leclerc that he has deep scratch marks on the halo Guard bar above the 20-year-old Monegassen leaves behind.
The photo shows how vulnerable man is in a sport where the forces of physics can be deadly. And maybe deadly too. Had the since its introduction at the start of the season controversial with motor sport purists Halo not protected Leclercs head. After the accident, there was no more critical word about the Titanium Temple, which had possibly saved a life in the 13th race after its introduction. Drivers, team bosses, retired one-time World Champions: All find the Halo suddenly great. The halo is helping, Vettel said: “Ignoring that fact would be stupid.”
The second picture shows Vettel’s Ferrari racing up the hill on the first lap, up from the Eau Rouge, onto the long straight Kemmel straight and then right past Hamilton as if he were riding a moon rocket. “He overtook me as if I was not there,” Hamilton said of this humiliating moment, which was even more remarkable in that the Briton had started off neatly from pole position and was still ahead in the Eau Rouge. Which tricks, please, did Vettel have under the hood?