Ricciardo wins at Spa after title rivals collide

Sun Aug 24, 2014 10:42am EDT
 
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By Alan Baldwin

SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS Belgium (Reuters) - Australian Daniel Ricciardo won the Belgian Grand Prix for Red Bull on Sunday while Mercedes title rivals Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton provided the drama of the day by colliding on the second lap.

Hamilton failed to finish after fighting with a damaged car but Rosberg, blamed by his bosses and booed by the crowd on the podium, finished second to extend his championship lead to 29 points with seven of the 19 races remaining.

The victory, on a surprisingly dry afternoon at a circuit famed for rapid changes in weather conditions, was Ricciardo's second in succession and third of his first season with the reigning champions.

It was also his team's second in succession in Belgium after four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel triumphed last year and set off a run of nine wins in a row.

Finland's Valtteri Bottas was third for Williams.

Ricciardo's win was almost a sideshow to the major talking point, a further stirring up of already troubled waters at Mercedes.

The two team mates had been expected to dominate the race after qualifying on the front row but the intense rivalry between them blew up in their face.

Mercedes motorsport head Toto Wolf slammed the incident as 'absolutely unacceptable' and blamed Rosberg, who refused to comment on the incident until he had seen replays.   Continued...

 
Red Bull Formula One driver Formula One driver Daniel Ricciardo of Australia celebrates after winning the Belgian F1 Grand Prix in Spa-Francorchamps August 24, 2014. REUTERS/Yves Herman