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The 1996 Belgian Grand Prix was a Formula One race held on August 25, 1996 at Spa-Francorchamps.


Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari 44 1:28:15.125 3 10
2 6 Canada Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 44 + 5.602 1 6
3 7 Finland Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes 44 + 15.710 6 4
4 3 France Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 44 + 19.125 7 3
5 5 United Kingdom Damon Hill Williams-Renault 44 + 29.179 2 2
6 4 Austria Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 44 + 29.896 5 1
7 19 Finland Mika Salo Tyrrell-Yamaha 44 + 60.754 13  
8 18 Japan Ukyo Katayama Tyrrell-Yamaha 44 + 100.227 17  
9 16 Brazil Ricardo Rosset Footwork-Hart 43 + 1 Lap 18  
10 20 Portugal Pedro Lamy Minardi-Ford 43 + 1 Lap 19  
Ret 8 United Kingdom David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 37 Spun off 4  
Ret 12 United Kingdom Martin Brundle Jordan-Peugeot 34 Engine 8  
Ret 2 United Kingdom Eddie Irvine Ferrari 29 Gearbox 9  
Ret 11 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Jordan-Peugeot 29 Suspension 10  
Ret 10 Brazil Pedro Diniz Ligier-Mugen-Honda 22 Electrical 15  
Ret 17 Netherlands Jos Verstappen Footwork-Hart 11 Accident 16  
Ret 15 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Sauber-Ford 0 Collision 11  
Ret 14 United Kingdom Johnny Herbert Sauber-Ford 0 Collision 12  
Ret 9 France Olivier Panis Ligier-Mugen-Honda 0 Collision 14  
DNQ 21 Italy Giovanni Lavaggi Minardi-Ford   DNQ  


  • Pole position: Jacques Villeneuve 1:50.574
  • Fastest lap: Gerhard Berger 1:53.067
  • The start of the race was catastrophic for the Sauber team, with both of their drivers Heinz-Harald Frentzen and Johnny Herbert eliminated immediately after a collision at the first corner while trying to avoid hitting Olivier Panis, who was attempting to rejoin the track having spun off at the same corner in a separate incident when he ran into Rubens Barrichello. Panis was also forced to retire on the spot; Barrichello was able to continue, although he had to pit to repair his suspension, putting him two laps behind; however, this proved all to no avail as his suspension collapsed completely on lap 29, forcing him out of the race altogether.
  • On lap 10, Jos Verstappen pitted with a sticking throttle. No damage was found and the Dutchman was released from the pits, but spun straight off on his return. The incident brought out the safety car for seven laps, during which time all the drivers besides the McLarens of Mika Häkkinen and David Coulthard (both running a one-stop strategy) made pit stops. Williams driver Jacques Villeneuve, leading the race at the time, missed his stop on lap 13 (later explaining that he misunderstood the radio instruction to come in due to the confusion brought about by the arrival of the safety car), and Damon Hill in the sister Williams was already on his way into the pits when radioed to stay out on the following lap, effectively costing Villeneuve the win and Hill a second place. The latter went down to thirteenth when he finally got to make his pit stop on lap 16, but recovered to 5th place by the end of the race.
  • Footwork/Arrows' team boss Tom Walkinshaw confirmed after the race that the throttle problem that had caused Verstappen to stop shortly before his crash had not recurred, and that the crash was caused by a faulty wheel.
  • The Tyrrells of Mika Salo and Ukyo Katayama finished in seventh and eighth places respectively. A fast early stop during the safety car period saw Salo running as high as third at one point.
Previous race:
1996 Hungarian Grand Prix
FIA Formula One World Championship
1996 season
Next race:
1996 Italian Grand Prix
Previous race:
1995 Belgian Grand Prix
Belgian Grand Prix Next race:
1997 Belgian Grand Prix


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