Lewis Hamilton's 30 place grid penatly isn't going to do much to push him closer to a fourth world title this weekend. After a hard fought race in Hungary he gained the lead in the championship for the first time this season, and then extended it again in Germany. That nineteen point lead over his teammate Nico Rosberg may well evaporate this weekend, though, depending on how successfully he can make his way back through the field starting from last.
The Red Bull cars looked impressively quick during practice, and the old theory that they were always designed for downforce over pure speed has ben exploded once again. Mercedes didn't run on the soft tyres at all in practice, though, having chosen to save all of theirs for qualifying on Saturday, and it's likely they've got more than enough pace to take on and beat the Red Bulls in the fight for pole position.
How much Lewis Hamilton will fight for that is questionable given that all he will achieve is wasting tyres that might be of use to him in the race. We think Nico Rosberg is more than likely to be on pole for the start of the race, and the best place to back him to have the fastest Q3 time is at Ladbrokes, who are offering a predicatably short 2/5.
However, in the best car and with a determination to not give away too many points to his teammate this weekend, we think Hamilton is likely to put in a storming race. He'll be helped by any safety cars, which aren't uncommon in Spa-Francorchamps, and we think it may well be worth a punt on Hamilton finishing the race on the podium despite starting about as far back as it's possible to get. The best place to back that is at StanJames, at a decent 7/4.
Finally, McLaren have brought a new engine to Spa and it's looked quick so far. With this often being a high attrition race, we think there might be a chance of a decent points scoring finish this weekend. Alonso has already hit problems and will suffer a grid penalty as a result, so we think Button is the one to back here.
The best place to put your money on Button managing a top six finish is at SkyBet, who are offering a tempting 9/1.