The Return Of An Era
The Belgian Grand Prix is well on its way to return to its former glory – the likes of which was last seen during the magical Michael Schumacher era – this time as a result of a different kind of drug: Max Verstappen mania.
For the very first time since Schumacher’s days, all grand stand seats were sold out already weeks ahead of the time. The Belgian Grand Prix is set to take place at the legendary Spa-Francorchamps racing circuit on August 27th.
Predictions for a sell-out crowd – something that has not happened since 2001. Not only are all grand-stand seats sold out for Sunday, but for the entire weekend. The number of tickets sold is generally capped at 250,000 for security and safety reasons. At a current peak of 260,000 tickets already sold well ahead of time, the event has practically already reached sold-out status.
The Colour Of A Grand Stand Is Orange
The Verstappen effect could already be seen during last year, peaking as the Grand Prix season raged on – with literally thousands of Dutch fans flocking to the grand stands to show their support to their Red Bull hero.
This year’s Belgian Grand Prix will be the 50th instalment of the event, and spectators are looking forward to the show to trump all shows. One of the star attractions of the day – and one which slots in nicely with the Verstappen effect – will be a demo-run of the 1992 Benetton B192, the actual car driven by Schumacher during the first of six consecutive wins at Spa-Francorchamps.
Meanwhile, Mercedes top boss Toto Wolff has issued a dire warning ahead of the 2017 Belgian Grand Prix, saying that it would be foolish to believe that main rival Ferrari had peaked at Hungary on July 30th, and that he believed that squad had a lot more planned for Belgium than a one-two finish.
Ferrari star duo Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen locked out the front row during the qualifying event for Hungary, displaying impressive speeds and team work. Had it not been for a steering wheel problem later on, things may have turned out quite differently to what they did. Wolff believes that the technical issues masked what Ferrari were actually capable of – and that the true pace and sheer brunt of the driving force would be on display in Belgium.
Ferrari is well on its way to finally close the Mercedes-Ferrari gap completely.
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