After 4 weeks away for the Summer break, Formula 1 returns with the Belgian Grand Prix this weekend.
The event takes place at the historic Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, one of the most thrilling tracks on the F1 calendar.
Overtaking is difficult in F1, and that is reflected accurately in this year’s game. However, out of all the 21 tracks on the roster, Spa is probably the one where it’s easiest to get past an opponent, thanks to its very long straights and high-speed nature.
With F1 2019’s Weekly Event happening at Spa this week, utilising these overtaking spots will be key to you getting the maximum rewards for your efforts.
Here are the 5 spots around Spa where you’re most likely to get an overtaking manoeuvre completed.
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The first overtaking opportunity on the track is the first corner of the circuit, the La Source hairpin. As it follows a DRS zone, it is definitely possible to overtake into here, especially as it follows the final chicane. The best line to take is the inside line, as you can really throw a late move in there, but the car on the outside gets a much better run out of the corner.
While this is a passing spot, you should be wary about using it as such, as the run down to Eau Rouge and up the Kemmel straight heavily favours the car behind.
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You can overtake going into Eau Rouge (as Mark Webber showed us in 2011) but that’s a very brave move, so the next main passing spot is the end of the Kemmel straight at Les Combes. You’ll be travelling at over 210 mph (338 kph) thanks to the DRS zone that precedes this triple chicane.
The slipstream going up the straight is incredibly powerful, you’ll usually be past the car ahead well before the corner, especially if you have low downforce. If you’re alongside, the best line to take is the inside line, as it remains the inside going through the Les Combes complex and into Burxelles.
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Because of the downforce levels available on modern F1 cars, Pouhon has become an overtaking spot. There’s a downhill run out of No Name corner, where you can get a decent slip stream on the car ahead.
While this is probably the least likely spot on this list, if you get alongside the car ahead and on the inside, you’ve got a good chance of getting past. You have to trust the car you’re battling, though, as if they don’t yield, you’ll both be spinning out at almost 200 mph (320 kph)
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With a slip-stream and a good run through Stavelot, Blanchimont becomes an overtaking spot, just ask Max Verstappen. If you have low downforce, you’ll be going almost 200mph going through what is normally an easy-flat corner.
Like Les Combes, you can get past before the corner itself, but you’ll usually be alongside your rival. You should aim for the inside, but it is possible to get a move completed on the outside, although you could easily be pushed wide. There is run-off on exit, but don’t attempt to cut, as it’s only kerbing and grass on the inside.
If you can’t get ahead through here, hold back and try a move going into the next corner…
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Formally known as the “bus stop” chicane, the final corners on the circuit are also one of the best to get by on the track. Arriving at 205 mph (329 kph) and braking down to second gear makes it the heaviest braking zone on the circuit. It’s possible to get a move down the inside or outside, but it is better to take the inside as it’s also the inside going into La Source at the start of the next lap.
You have to be careful, though, as going too deep or braking too late can cause an accident, as Sebastian Vettel showed us in 2010. It’s also sometimes to hard to run two cars through here, it’s a surprisingly tight corner that pinches on the exit.
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