Daniel Ricciardo holds off Nico Rosberg to win Belgian Grand Prix

Daniel Ricciardo holds off Nico Rosberg to win Belgian Grand Prix
Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo celebrates following his victory at the Belgian Grand Prix on Sunday. (Mark Thompson / Getty Images)

Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo won an incident-packed Belgian Grand Prix on Sunday, while Nico Rosberg was second to extend his championship lead over Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton in acrimonious circumstances.

Finnish driver Valtteri Bottas was third.


The increasingly strained relations at Mercedes look set to get even worse after Rosberg effectively ended Hamilton's race chances with a risky overtaking move that saw him clip and puncture the Briton's left tire.

Rosberg, who finished 3.3 seconds behind Ricciardo, was jeered by the Spa crowd when he stepped on to the podium.

"It's not my position to comment on it at all because I haven't seen it," Rosberg said of the incident. "Of course it's very disappointing from a team's perspective. We could have done a lot better than just finish in second place with the car we have."

Hamilton retired with five laps remaining after his team noticed some further degradation and he appeared to blame Rosberg after the race.

"I'm sure he'll leave here happy," Hamilton told the BBC.

Mercedes executive director Toto Wolff called the situation "absolutely unacceptable" and blamed Rosberg.

"You don't try to overtake with the knife between your teeth in lap number two and damage both cars," he told BBC sport. "Lewis is very upset. We kept him out there for a long time with a damaged car. He will recover quickly. It is going to be handled."

Rosberg looked visibly uncomfortable in the post-race news conference when asked to respond to Wolff's comments.

"I respect their opinion," Rosberg said. "The inside was blocked and I gave it a go on the outside."

It was a second straight win for Ricciardo after victory at the Hungarian GP last month and the third of an impressive season. The Australian continues to outshine his Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel, who finished fifth behind Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen.

"To have three wins in 12 races has exceeded a few expectations. The in-team battle has gone really well," Ricciardo said. "I've shown speed throughout qualifying and in the race now. I've demonstrated race craft and good consistency."

Rosberg extended his lead over Hamilton from 11 points to 29, while Ricciardo is 35 points behind Hamilton. Showing remarkable consistency, Bottas secured a fourth podium in the past five races.