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the Spa Francorchamps circuit.

Private jet charter Belgian F1 Grand Prix

The Belgian Formula one (F1) Grand prix is the thirteenth race in the 2016 Formula one (F1) season in Stavelot at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on the 28th August 2016.

The Belgian Grand Prix is an automobile race, part of the Formula One World Championship. The first national race of Belgium was held in 1925 at the Spa region’s race course, an area of the country that had been associated with motor sport since the very early years of racing. To accommodate Grand Prix motor racing, the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps race course was built in 1921 but it was only used for motorcycle racing until 1924. After the 1923 success of the new 24 hours of Le Mans in France, the Spa 24 Hours, a similar 24-hour endurance race, was run at the Spa track.

Since inception, Spa-Francorchamps has been known for its unpredictable weather. At one stage in its history it had rained at the Belgian Grand Prix for twenty years in a row. Frequently drivers confront a part of the course that is clear and bright while another stretch is rainy and slippery.

The Belgian Grand Prix was designated the European Grand Prix six times between 1925 and 1973, when this title was an honorary designation given each year to one grand prix race in Europe. It is one of the most popular races on the Formula One calendar, due to the scenic and historical Spa-Francorchamps circuit being a favorite of drivers and fans.

Spa-Francorchamps had been shortened to 4.3 mi (7 km) in 1979; the parts that went into and through the urban countryside that swept past towns and other obstructions had been cut out and replaced with a new series of corners right before the Les Combes left-hand corner, and the new track rejoined the old on the straight leading up to Blanchimont. The first race at the shortened Spa circuit was won by Frenchman Alain Prost, and the circuit was an immediate hit with drivers, teams and fans.

The Belgian Grand Prix returned to Zolder in 1984 and this was the last F1 race held at the Flemish circuit with Italian Michele Alboreto taking victory in a Ferrari.

1985 saw the event postponed because of a new asphalt that had been laid down specifically to help the cars on the often rain-soaked Spa circuit. But to the embarrassment of the organizers, the weather was hot, and the track surface broke up so badly the drivers could not drive on it. The prestigious Belgian event was moved from its original date in early June to mid-September. When mid-September came around, Brazilian Ayrton Senna took his first of 5 Belgian Grands Prix in a wet/dry race, driving a Lotus. Nigel Mansell dominated the 1986 event, and he and Senna took each other out the following year when Mansell attempted to pass the Brazilian on the outside of a wide corner. Senna won the next 4 Belgian Grands Prix, the first 2 being rain-soaked events. The 1988 event was the first Belgian Grand Prix to be held in late August/early September instead of May or June (excluding the rescheduled 1985 event) and it has remained in this time frame ever since. The 1990 event had to be restarted twice after a multi-car accident at the La Source hairpin on the first start and then Paolo Barilla crashing at Eau Rouge on the second start. In 1992 German up-and-comer Michael Schumacher won his first of 91 Grand Prix victories in a Benetton. Damon Hill won the 1993 event after battling with Senna and Schumacher.

1994 saw a chicane installed at the bottom of Eau Rouge in response to the Imola tragedies that year. 1995 saw the chicane gone, and Schumacher won this and the next two Belgian Grand Prix. The 1998 event was particularly notable, in torrential conditions. The race was originally stopped after an accident involving thirteen of the twenty-two runners at the first corner. The heavy rain caused low visibility, and Michael Schumacher ran into the back of David Coulthard, an event that angered Schumacher so much he stormed into the McLaren garage to confront Coulthard, claiming he had tried to kill him. Coulthard later admitted he had been at fault, due to his own inexperience. Only eight drivers were classified finishers (two of whom were five laps behind, one of whom was Coulthard) and Damon Hill secured a victory ahead of team mate Ralf Schumacher to record the previously underperforming Jordan team’s first Formula One win in its history, and a 1–2 to top it off.

Schumacher won his 52nd Grand Prix at Spa in 2001, surpassing Alain Prost’s all-time record of 51 wins. Schumacher also won his seventh World Drivers’ Championship title at Spa in 2004. There was no Belgian Grand Prix in 2003 because of the country’s tobacco advertising laws. In 2006, the FIA announced the Belgian Grand Prix would not be part of the 2006 Formula One season, since the local authorities had started major repair work in Spa-Francorchamps. The Belgian Grand Prix returned in 2007, when Kimi Räikkönen took pole position and his 3rd Belgian Grand Prix win in a row.

In 2008, McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton survived a frantic last two laps in a late shower of rain to win the Belgian Grand Prix. Hamilton lost the lead to Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen with an early spin but fought back in the closing laps to re-take the lead with two laps to go. On a soaking track, Hamilton passed Räikkönen, lost the lead again with a spin, re-took it and then saw Räikkönen crash. Ferrari’s Felipe Massa took second leaving him eight points behind Hamilton. However, the stewards decided after the race to apply a drive-through penalty for Hamilton’s pass on Räikkönen (i.e. a 25-second penalty) after they had deemed that Hamilton had cut a corner in the Bus Stop chicane. This left Hamilton in third place behind Ferrari’s Felipe Massa and BMW Sauber’s Nick Heidfeld. The penalty cut Hamilton’s lead over Massa to just two points with five races remaining. McLaren appealed the decision but were turned down as it is not permissible to appeal drive-through penalties. The stewards’ decision was criticised by former world champion Niki Lauda calling it “completely wrong”.

In 2009, Bernie Ecclestone said in an interview that he would like the Belgian Grand Prix to rotate with a Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, rather than the Nürburgring rotating with the Hockenheimring.[6] In January 2015, the economy minister of the Walloon Government Jean-Claude Marcourt, confirming a contract extension to host the Belgian Grand Prix race at Spa through 2018.

Michael Schumacher has won the Belgian Grand Prix 6 times and Ayrton Senna won 5 times; including 4 times in a row from 1988–1991, and Kimi Räikkönen and Jim Clark both won 4 times (Clark also won 4 times in row, from 1962–1965).

The Spa-Francorchamps circuit lies 60 kilometres away from Liege airport (EBLG / LGG). The journey time by car is around 45 minutes subject to traffic.  A helicopter transfer from Liege airport will land you at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in 25 minutes.

Arranging a private jet charter or helicopter transfer with Freedom Air to arrive in style to the Belgian formula one (F1) grand prix in Spa-Francorchamps is simple.  The Freedom Air team can be reached on +44 (0) 1275 548001 and charters@flyfreedomair.com to book your next trip.