The perfect storm: Fisichella shocks Spa

The perfect storm: Fisichella shocks Spa

Giancarlo Fisichella and Force India were the sensation of the Belgian Grand Prix, starting from pole and fighting for victory until the very last corner. Adam Cooper looks at how the Italian driver and his team upset the order at Spa

When Giancarlo Fisichella took pole and finished second at Spa last weekend, many people reacted as if the Force India VJM02 had suddenly arrived from another planet. Some were convinced that the team (and one or two others who qualified well) got hold of special Bridgestones – Michael Schumacher's comeback tyres was the big joke. A representative of a leading team was even moved to remark that Force India's sudden appearance at the sharp end of the field was bad for F1, which seemed a little disingenuous.

In fact, the performance was a confluence of factors all falling into place. A car that has steadily and quietly been improving hit top form at a track that seemed tailor made for it, while at the same time many of the usual frontrunners totally failed to come to terms with the challenges the place threw up. And a driver who on his day can be quite brilliant – and who had proved it at Spa a few times in the past – was motivated further by the knowledge that the chance of a lifetime within his reach. It was indeed the perfect storm.

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