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Summary

  1. Hamilton on pole, Rosberg 2nd, Bottas 3rd
  2. Grosjean 4th, Perez 5th, Ricciardo 6th, Vettel 9th
  3. Raikkonen breaks down, Kvyat out in Q2
  4. Both McLarens, Marussias & Nasr out
  5. Hamilton top in Q1, Rosberg top in Q2

Live Reporting

By Gary Rose

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton

    A good day for Lewis Hamilton as he secures yet another pole position, but he'll know all too well there is still plenty to do.

    The reigning world champion has struggled to get off the line in recent races and with new rules about the start of races, everyone is heading into the relative unknown.

    Can Nico Rosberg catch Hamilton out? We'll find out tomorrow.

    That's it from us, I'll leave you with Andrew Benson's report from Spa and also these excellent video features:

  2. Start to be key?

    Quote Message: "The team have done a lot of analysis. All this weekend we have been working on the start so we are as prepared as we can be. We feel relatively good about it and hopefully it provides an exciting start for the fans. from Lewis Hamilton
    Lewis Hamilton
  3. Post update

    David Coulthard called it flawless, see for yourself by watching Lewis Hamiltion's lap for pole here.

    Lewis Hamilton
  4. Post update

    Williams' Valtteri Bottas, who qualified third:  "It is good to be back in the top three in qualifying. 

    "We knew after practice that there was so much more we could do if we put everything together. We got the balance finely tuned for qualifying and the car felt really good.

    "We knew it would be close, after the Mercedes guys,  and that P3 could be possible. We managed to get everything right."

  5. Post update

    Top three

    Nico Rosberg, who qualified second: “For sure I'm disappointed. I lost it a bit this morning in free practice but then I got the balance back for qualifying but Lewis was too quick in the end and found quite a lot extra that I didn't have in my pocket.”    

  6. Fast fact

    Lewis Hamilton
  7. Get involved #bbcf1

  8. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton

    Lewis Hamilton, who secured pole position: "I am really happy today with the performance of the car and team. They have been doing a fantastic job and the car has been feeling great and it is a circuit where if you can get the right balance it is one of the most fun to drive. It’s a long race and a long run to Turn Five but I am just happy to be here today."

  9. Post update

    David Coulthard

    BBC F1 co-commentator

    "Lewis's lap was flawless. Nico tended to have the upper hand on two of the sectors but Lewis learned from that through qualifying. He would have had feedback that he has improved in the middle sector and then not content with that he improved in other areas around the lap. 

    "He just doesn't seem flustered in anyway. His hands are so steady on the wheel and he looks so assured. It was an as assured a qualifying lap as we have seen from him this year."

  10. Clear the mantelpiece

    Lewis Hamilton

    You know why Lewis Hamilton's smiling? Because he has won the Pole Position Trophy, that's why*. 

    Ten pole positions with eight races to go after this weekend. The qualifying king of 2015.

    *might not be true

  11. QUALIFYING RESULT

    Lewis Hamilton

    1) Hamilton 2 ) Rosberg 3) Bottas 4) Grosjean 5) Perez 6) Ricciardo 7) Massa 8) Maldonado 9) Vettel 10) Sainz

    11) Hulkenberg 12) Kvyat 13) Ericsson 14) Raikkonen 15) Verstappen 16) Nasr 17) Button 18) Alonso 19) Steven 20) Merhi

    * Grid-place penalties to be applied

  12. Post update

    Eddie Jordan

    BBC F1 chief analyst

    Quote Message: We saw a huge mark of an improvement in Hamilton's qualifying a few races ago and it is an indication of him becoming world class. He is fast approaching mega stardom.
  13. Post update

    Sebastian Veteel

    So no surprises with the top two but what happened to Sebastian Vettel? Usually the best of the rest and he's all the way down in ninth.

  14. Post update

    Hamilton

    Lewis Hamilton does it again, his 10th pole position of the season and he's done it in style too. He was half a second faster than Nico Rosberg.

  15. Qualifying result

    1) Hamilton 2) Rosberg 3) Bottas 4) Grosjean* 5) Perez 6) Ricciardo 7) Massa 8) Maldonado 9) Vettel 10) Sainz  

    *Five place grid penalty to come

  16. Chequered flag

    LEWIS HAMILTON SECURES POLE POSITION FOR THE BELGIAN GRAND PRIX.

  17. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton improves with 1:47.197, too much for Nico Rosberg?

  18. Post update

    Valtteri Bottas crosses the line and is provisionally third, Romain Grosjean fourth and Sergio Perez fifth.

  19. Post update

    Sergio Perez is fastest of all through sector one. He's having a stormer today. 

  20. Post update

    Everyone is back out now for the final shot at securing a strong place on the grid. Valtteri Bottas will give us the first lap time of the 10 drivers.

  21. Post update

    Mercedes are a bit quick to get the tyre blankets off Lewis Hamilton's car and the Briton has to rush his preparation. Will that affect him?

  22. Post update

    David Coulthard

    BBC F1 co-commentator

    Quote Message: Rosberg just got on the inside curve on his lap. That was enough to unsettle the car. That lost a lot of time
  23. Post update

    ...Lewis Hamilton is into P1 with a 1:47.449 with Nico Rosberg's time not good enough to beat his team-mate. He's currently second, four tenths of a second off Hamilton's best.

    Valtteri Bottas is currently third, with Felipe Massa fourth and Sebastian Vettel fifth.

    The cars head back in to prepare for one more shot.

  24. Post update

    Nico Rosberg is also out and there is nothing between him and Lewis Hamilton in sector one...

  25. Post update

    Sainz

    All about focus and keeping calm for Carlos Sainz...

  26. Disappointment for McLaren

    Quote Message: You have to give it your all, but we didn’t have to qualify really as we were going to start at the back. I thought it was as good as when I got pole here a few years ago, but then you see you are a second behind. It is puzzling and disappointing. But it is not just me, it is the whole team from Jenson Button
    Jenson Button
  27. Post update

    Valtteri Bottas is once again the first to emerge on the track. Lewis Hamilton is also out for his first bite of the qualifying cherry.

  28. Final qualifying starts

    Right then, off we go with the top 10 shoot-out. Who's going to secure pole position?

  29. Post update

    Eddie Jordan

    BBC F1 chief analyst

    Quote Message: “Perez has moments, flashes of brilliance. This is a great indication of what he can do.” from Eddie Jordan
    Eddie Jordan
  30. Ferrari jumping the gun?

    Someone's confident!

  31. IN

    1) Rosberg 2) Hamilton 3) Vettel 4) Perez 5) Massa 6) Maldonado 7) Grosjean 8) Ricciardo 9) Bottas 10) Sainz

  32. OUT

    11) Hulkenberg 12) Kvyat 13) Ericsson 14) Raikkonen* 15) Verstappen*

    * No time set.

  33. Post update

    Another good showing from Sergio Perez as he shoots up to P4, but not good news for his Force India team-mate Nico Hulkenberg. He's out.

  34. Second qualifying ends

    Sebastian Vettel moves up to third with 1:48.761 as Q2 comes to an end, Felipe Massa is third fastest.

    Nico Hulkenberg, Daniil Kvyat and Marcus Ericsson are in danger...

  35. Post update

  36. Post update

    No movement from either Mercedes driver at the moment as several other cars head out.

  37. Post update

  38. Post update

    Five minutes until Q2 ends and Valtteri Bottas is the first to break the silence and venture back out.

    He is one of just seven drivers to post a time.

  39. Post update

    It looks like Max Verstappen, who had a power issue in Q1, has called it a day as well as he strolls down the pitlane, helmet off. 

  40. Post update

  41. Post update

    Kimi Raikkonen loves Spa. He's won four times on the circuit before but it has not been good to him today. His qualifying is over.

    Green light and Q2 resumes.

  42. Post update

    David Coulthard

    BBC F1 co-commentator

    Kimi Raikkonen
    Quote Message: Raikkonen has not had a great deal of luck this season. That shunting you can hear is the gearbox
  43. Red flag

    Wowzer. Replays show Kimi Raikkonen's car spluttering and sounding not too dissimilar to an old banger I had at 17 before coming to a stop on the edge of the track.

    "Something broke," he says.

  44. Post update

    Quote Message: “Hamilton is fastest in the middle section while Rosberg is in the first and last.” from David Coulthard
    David Coulthard
  45. Yellow flag

    Yellow flags are being waved and it is for the Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen, he stopped just after Turn 14.

  46. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton sets the early pace with a 1:48.024 but Nico Rosberg bites back with a 1:47.955.

  47. Post update

  48. Post update

    The Williams of Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa are the first out on track, with Lewis Hamilton, softs on, following soon after. The Briton is told by Mercedes they have lost telemetry for his car.

  49. What's going to be needed?

    Tom Clarkson

    BBC F1 pit-lane reporter

    "The teams were slighty caught out by the track getting faster, it is half a second faster than the teams were perhaps expecting before qualifying started. We are looking at I think a 1:49 dead [for getting into Q3], but it is a movable target."

  50. Post update

  51. Second qualifying starts

    Who will make it through to the top-10 shoot-out? Time to find out.

  52. IN

    1) Hamilton 2) Rosberg 3) Perez 4) Bottas 5) Sainz 6) Vettel 7) Raikkonen 8) Grosjean 9) Kvyat 10) Hulkenberg

    11) Ericsson 12) Maldonado 13) Ricciardo 14) Massa 15) Verstappen

  53. Post update

    The McLarens don't get through to Q2 but they already knew they would be starting at the back of the grid anyway because of penalties. Max Verstappen, despite reporting a power issue, gets himself through.

  54. OUT

    16) Felipe Nasr 17) Jenson Button 18) Fernando Alonso 19) Will Stevens 20) Roberto Merhi

  55. First qualifying ends

    Lewis Hamilton is fastest in the first part of qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix.

  56. Toro Rosso team radio

    Max Verstappen

    Quote Message: I lost power. Something's wrong
  57. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg, having stayed on the medium compound, dip below 1:49 to go first and second respectively.

    Meanwhile, Max Verstappen, the two McLarens and the two Manors are in danger with seconds left of Q1...

  58. Post update

    Where did this come from? Sergio Perez leaps to the top of the timesheet with an impressive 1:49.006 on the softs. 

    Sebastian Vettel, Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean alll improve but none of their times are good enough to beat Perez's effort.

  59. Post update

  60. Post update

    Max Verstappen, who will have to take a 10-place grid penalty for an engine change, is round in 1:51.375 - the 14th fastest time so far.

    At the moment, Jenson Button, Fernando Alonso, Roberto Merhi and Will Stevens are the drivers in danger.

    Felipe Massa is yet to set a time.

  61. Post update

    Quote Message: This is not slow motion, just to clarify for the viewers. This is actually how fast a McLaren goes in a straight line.” from David Coulthard
    David Coulthard
  62. Post update

    Jenson Button is up and running with his first flyer. Not a good lap as he is round in 1:52,819, only good enh for 16th and a second slower than Pastor Maldonado in 15th.

  63. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton is straight to the top of the timesheet with his first flyer, a 1:49.577 but that is immediately bettered by Nico Rosberg who is round with a 1:49.498.

    Fourteen drivers have clocked timed efforts, with Sebastian Vettel third and Valtteri Bottas fourth.

  64. Post update

    Valtteri Bottas, on the harder compound, posts a 1:50.195 and is into P1 in the very early stages of Q1.

  65. Get involved #bbcf1

  66. Post update

    David Coulthard

    BBC F1 co-commentator

    Quote Message: Lewis is looking for his sixth pole in succession, which would be very impressive. His brilliance is that he can deliver natural speed
  67. Post update

  68. First qualifying starts

    Green light and Valtteri Bottas takes the Williams straight out, his car sporting medium tyres. Roberto Merhi heads follows him with softs bolted on.

  69. Post update

    BBC

    Big British presence in the crowd at Spa as the start of qualifying approaches. 

    Hot and sunny, with air temperature 23C and track temperature 40C.

  70. Post update

    Snacks ready? Drink topped up? It is almost qualifying time.

  71. Fast fact

    Williams

    Mercedes have been on pole for the last 21 races. The record for successive poles is 24 (Williams 1992-93). 

  72. Post update

    Daniil Kvyatt

    Leo Tolstoy. Impressive reading there from young Daniil Kvyat.

    Plenty more insight on BBC Two right now, and on this page for online viewers. Highly recommend watching.

  73. Have a go at our F1 quiz

    Right then, just over 15 minutes until quali gets under way. Enough time for you to have a crack at our F1 quiz and find out which driver you are.

    I was Pierluigi Martini. "Steady enough performer". Sounds about right...

    BBC
  74. Get involved #bbcf1

  75. Fast fact

    Belgium

    At 7.004 km Spa-Franchorchamps is the longest circuit on the F1 calendar. It is more than double the distance of Monaco's.

  76. Post update

    Verstappen

    "Did you have a racing hero," Lee McKenzie asks Max Verstappen.

    "That's my dad," he replies.

    Correct answer.

  77. At home with the Verstappens

    BBC

    We are currently being treated to a behind-the-scenes look at Max Verstappen's home on BBC Two, which features the best (only) karting garage I have ever seen.

    Mad isn't it. It just looks like a dad at home with his son, indulging in a shared hobby, except Max is driving, and impressing, on the biggest stage in motorsport in the world.

    Max Verstappen
  78. Post update

    Andrew Benson

    Chief F1 writer

    "The final practice session started with an announcement from tyre supplier Pirelli that they believed the dramatic 190mph tyre failure suffered by Rosberg on Friday had been caused by a puncture.  

    "And although the sport's biggest names, Hamilton, Vettel and McLaren's Fernando Alonso all raised their concerns about tyre safety in the drivers' briefing on Friday afternoon, there were no further problems in final practice.

    "The drivers continue to have a wider, general concern about Pirelli's tyres, however, their memories still fresh of the 2013 season, when a series of catastrophic failures during the British Grand Prix plunged the sport into crisis and led to emergency changes to the tyre design."

    Read more from Andrew here.

  79. CSI...for tyres

    Pirelli management

    Now when I bring up the word tyres with non-F1 following colleagues at work, it almost certainly elicits a massive yawn from them.

    Pirelli motorsport boss Paul Hembery has just done a cracking job of making them sound exciting, saying they had a CSI-like laboratory doing forensic work on the tyres after Nico Rosberg's tyre failure on Friday.

    Said crack forensics team have determined the tyre failure was caused by a "foreign object", and Hembery says they are now "finalising now the precise cause of that cut".

  80. One million grid place penalties

    Dr Evil

    McLaren duo Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button will start at the back of the grid on Sunday.

    Despite only 20 cars being on the grid, Alonso was hit with a 30-place penalty and Button a 25-place penalty for changes to their Honda power units. 

    That combined tally of 55 then increased to 105 today after further changes.

    May as well just make it one million places and be done with it...

  81. Get involved #bbcf1

    Qualifying predictions

    Can you see anything out of the ordinary happening in qualifying? 

    Let us know your predictions for qualifying via #bbcf1, text in on 81111 (UK only) and have your say on the BBC Sport Facebook page.

  82. Pedal to the metal

    Formula 1
  83. Post update

    Quote Message: "Off the back of Hungary this is another circuit that throws up unusual results. This is not the Mercedes show by any stretch of the imagination." from David Coulthard BBC Two
    David CoulthardBBC Two
  84. Got milk?

    Bernie Ecclestone

    Here's something you don't see every day - Bernie Ecclestone meeting disgruntled Belgian dairy farmers to discuss the price of milk.

    Unhappy with low prices in Belgium, the farmers have already blocked roads in the country in protest and there were rumours they of them setting up blockades around the circuit. 

    Bernie looks to have saved the day though.

  85. Post update

    Andrew Benson

    Chief F1 writer

    "Lewis Hamilton heads into the weekend with a 21-point lead over Nico Rosberg in the championship, but facing a revived threat from Ferrari following Sebastian Vettel's victory in the previous race in Hungary, before Formula 1's summer break.

    "The world champion had appeared out of sorts on Friday, and Rosberg was confident enough to say he was 'one step ahead of Lewis at the moment'.

    "Not any more. 

    "Hamilton's work on the set-up overnight with his engineers has translated into a significant advantage, most of which was in the demanding middle sector of the lap, which is a succession of difficult medium- and high-speed corners.

    "Although Rosberg was slightly quicker than Hamilton in the first sector through the famous Eau Rouge corner, Hamilton was half a second ahead in the second.

    "The fight for pole appears to be between the two silver cars, with Ferrari next best."

  86. What's on and when

    Yep, as Lee says build-up to Belgian Grand Prix qualifying gets under way at 12:10 BST on BBC Two and on this page, with qualifying itself starting at 13:00. Get on it.

  87. Post update

  88. Post update

    Nico Rosberg

    A massive tyre failure on Friday and a wife expecting their first child at any minute waiting at home, it is perhaps fair to say Nico Rosberg has plenty going on in his head at the moment.

    It is hard to say whether either of the above was playing on his mind this morning but, after a dominant display on Friday, the German's best in FP3 was half a second slower than Lewis Hamilton's benchmark time.

  89. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton

    Beautiful views, beautiful circuit and home to arguably the best corner in Formula 1, everyone loves Spa right?

    Wrong.

    When Lewis Hamilton was asked if this circuit was one of his favourites the other day, his response was simply: "No".

    He doesn't have the best of records at Spa but then, his team-mate and most likely rival for pole in qualifying today might just have his mind on other matters...

  90. To me, to you

    Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton

    After Nico Rosberg topped Friday, his Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton led the way in final practice.

    It all points to another Mercedes pole, but after Rosberg's nerve-jangling tyre failure and with Spa not a happy hunting ground for Hamilton, could someone else take advantage and steal the show?

  91. Post update

    Yep, you too can do what Emma is doing and get yourself ready for the day or rattle off some chores because we are going to have a little break before build-up to qualifying begins at 12:00.

    See you then!

  92. Get involved #bbcf1

  93. Grosjean team radio

    Grojean
    Quote Message: Raikkonen is dangerous. It's very dangerous what he did to me.
  94. Post update

    Romain Grosjean managed to sneak up to 16th with his final lap, but was left frustrated by Kimi Raikkonen as the Ferrari got in his way.

  95. FP3 result

    1) Hamilton 2) Rosberg 3) Vettel 4) Raikkonen 5) Perez 6) Ricciardo 7) Kvyat 8) Hulkenberg 9) Bottas 10) Massa

    11) Sainz 12) Maldonado 13) Verstappen 14) Nasr 15) Ericsson 16) Grosjean 17) Button 18) Stevens 19) Merhi

    * No running for Alonso 

  96. Chequered flag

    LEWIS HAMILTON FINISHES FASTEST IN THIRD PRACTICE FOR THE BELGIAN GRAND PRIX.

  97. Post update

    A practice start for Lewis Hamilton - Mercedes have had a couple of those in Belgium. He'll be keen to get away well this weekend after some poor starts for the championship leader in recent races, especially with the new rules.

  98. Post update

    Any improvement from Williams? Nope. Valtteri Bottas, fastest in FP3 last year in Belgium, fails to produce a particularly quick lap and a 1:50.179 is only good enough for ninth.

  99. Post update

    No soft tyre run for Fernando Alonso, he is not getting out at all in this session because of that power unit problem, but Jenson Button has the yellow-walled tyre on and goes 15th fastest on his first run.

  100. Post update

    Sebastian Vettel is out on his qualifying sim run and goes third fastest, six tenths down on Lewis Hamilton's benchmark. Vettel's team-mate Kimi Raikkonen is fourth, with Sergio Perez fifth.

  101. Post update

  102. Post update

    Niki Lauda

    Someone's happy with that flex of the muscles by Mercedes.

  103. Post update

    ...it is Lewis Hamilton who goes fastest, a 1:48.984 and he is almost half a second quicker than his team-mate.

  104. Post update

    Nico Rosberg pulls it out of the bag in the final sector to go four tenths faster than Daniel Ricciardo, a 1:49.482 popping him into P1.

    Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton is also on a lap on the softs, who will be fastest of the two Mercedes...?

  105. Get involved #bcbf1

    Your F1 driver birthday gifts

  106. Post update

    Nico Rosberg rolls out with the softs bolted on and begins his qualifying simulation run.

  107. Post update

  108. Post update

    Just three drivers out on track - Daniel Ricciardo, Daniil Kvyat and Max Verstappen on used softs - but there is movement at Mercedes. Expect it to get very busy soon enough as we enter the final quarter of an hour.

  109. Post update

    Jennie Gow

    BBC pit-lane reporter

    "I've just been speaking to the guys at Pirelli - not about exploding tyres, but predictions for the race, they reckon it will be a two-stop race. The soft tyre is looking to be about 1.7s quicker."

  110. Get involved #bbcf1

    Your F1 driver birthday gifts

  111. Post update

  112. Post update

    Not too many teams have actually decided to make the switch to softs, with just the Red Bull pair of Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat and the Toro Rosso of Max Verstappen on that compound with 20 minutes remaining.

  113. Post update

    The track is getting busier with 13 cars out there, Jenson Button's McLaren one of them. He goes 17th fastest with his first timed effort, a 1:53.297.

  114. Get involved #bbcf1

  115. Post update

  116. Yellow flag

    Grojean

    Romain Grosjean spins his Lotus at the Bus Stop but no drama, he quickly rights himself and tootles off on his way.

  117. Post update

    Jennie Gow

    BBC Radio 5 live pit-lane reporter

    "I've been speaking to the Williams team and they are not worried. They say they are exactly where they should be. 

    "They have done one fast lap so far, so it is not a true representative of them so far but if you are a Williams fan don't worry, I think they will come back this afternoon."

  118. Post update

    Ah there you are Williams! 

    Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa finally get themselves on the timing board with their first efforts of the session, going seventh and eighth fastest respectively.

    Meanwhile, Daniil Kvyat posts a 1:49.980 to go second fastest, just 0.050 off Daniel Ricciardo's pacesetting time.

  119. Speed trap

    Formula 1
  120. Post update

    Max Verstappen first soft tyre run sees him briefly into P1 with a 1:50.500, before Daniel Ricciardo's run sees him dip below 1:50 with a 1:49.930.

  121. Post update

    Most drivers are back in the pits as they seemingly prepare for the switch to softs. 

    Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen are the first of the drivers to strap on the yellow-walled boots and head back out with 35 minutes of the session remaining.

  122. Post update

    Jennie Gow

    BBC Radio 5 live pit-lane reporter

    Fernando Alonso

    "Fernando Alonso is out of his car. McLaren have found an anomaly in the power unit. They are not happy with the noises they heard, they cut the engine and Alonso is not looking very happy at the moment."

  123. "No structural integrity issue"

  124. Post update

    Lewis Hamilton brings the benchmark time down a shade as a 1:50.635 puts him into P1. 

    No timed laps yet from either the Williams or McLaren drivers...

  125. Post update

    Andrew Benson

    Chief F1 writer at Spa

    Spa

    “A couple of changes have been made to the track following Friday practice, the most important the removal of a so-called ‘sausage’ kerb at Raidillon, the left-hander that forms the last part of the Eau Rouge swerves. 

    "This is nothing to do with the tyre failure suffered by Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg. The drivers were concerned that this could launch their cars if they got the corner wrong - Jenson Button said on Thursday ‘you wouldn’t want to go over that’. 

    "The kerb has now been removed and drivers have been warned about exceeding track limits.”

  126. Red Bull rising?

    Ferrari

    Could Red Bull be in for a good weekend? Daniel Ricciardo was third fastest in FP2 and he goes fastest of all so far today with a 1:50.680.

    Kimi Raikkonen is second fastest but then has a little moment at Turn 13, running into the gravel before recovering.

  127. Get involved #bbcf1

    We've been asking what you would buy an F1 driver for their birthday...

  128. Hamilton's holiday

    Lewis Hamilton

    Lewis Hamilton certainly appears to have had a busy couple of weeks since finishing sixth at the Hungarian GP.

    Jamie Foxx, Jon Bon Jovi and Jack Nicholson are just some of the famous names he has been hanging around with, while he has also spent time in Barbados.

    Not a bad break. I'm happy if I can spot a moderately well-known entertainer while on a week's holiday in Blackpool...

    You can read more about what Hamilton got up to in the summer, and his thoughts on this weekend's race,in his latest column.

  129. Rosberg back out

    Nico Rosberg

    Nico Rosberg is out on the circuit for the first time since that incident and immediately sets the pace with a 1:51.737. 

    It is a short-lived stay at the top as Nico Hulkenberg goes fastest of all with 1:51.104, with Lewis Hamilton slotting into third.

  130. Post update

    Andrew Benson

    Chief F1 writer

    “Nico Rosberg’s tyre failure came after a strong performance from the German. Rosberg was faster than team-mate Lewis Hamilton in both sessions and said he was ‘one step ahead of Lewis at the moment’. 

    "Rosberg added that Hamilton was ‘a bit unsure what is going on’. He did admit, though, that the tyre failure had given him ‘a bit of a dent of confidence’.”

  131. Grosjean gets us going

    Romain Grosjean

    Sebastian Vettel leads the drivers out for their installation laps before Romain Grosjean gets the session properly up and running with the first timed effort of the day, a 1:53.092.

  132. Post update

    Formula 1

    Mercedes technical boss Paddy Lowe has been speaking about Nico Rosberg's tyre failure, with the feeling that a puncture was caused by a "foreign body".

    "Pirelli have sent a note out to the teams and we have had various meetings with them," he said. "The position is not absolutely clear because they need to gather the evidence and it is a very unusual failure. 

    "It does seem to be a one-off incident and the evidence appears to be pointing towards a foreign body from the outside causing a cut."

  133. Go! Go! Go!

    The circuit is open and one hour of final practice is under way. A lovely day for the crowds with bright blue skies above the track.

  134. Live now

    Formula 1

    Is that the time!? 

    Two minutes until final practice gets under way and you can watch it all on BBC Two and on this page. 

  135. Drivers concerned

    Andrew Benson

    Chief F1 writer at Spa

    "Phew! What a start to the Belgian Grand Prix weekend - and I am not referring to the highly unusual bright, sunny weather. 

    "Following Nico Rosberg’s tyre failure on Friday, it’s all kicking off. The drivers are concerned about the safety of Pirelli’s rubber. It’s hard to get a consistent story about exactly who said what, but the bottom line is that leading drivers raised their concerns with F1 director Charlie Whiting during their briefing on Friday afternoon. 

    "Tellingly,Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and SebastianVettel- the three biggest names in the sport - were all centrally involved in the discussion. So far, Pirelli have not been able to provide an explanation for the failure.”

  136. Get involved #bbcf1

    Your F1 driver birthday gift

    Sauber

    So not a good day for Nico Rosberg on Friday, but a great one for Felipe Nasr because he got cake!

    Yep. the Sauber man celebrated his 23rd birthday and to mark the occasion his team got him a nice sweet treat, complete with a miniature car. Aww.

    On that note, if you could give an F1 driver a birthday gift, who would it be and what would you get them?

    The highway code book for Pastor Maldonado perhaps?

    Let us know via #bbcf1, text in on 81111 (UK only) and post your comment on the BBC Sport Facebook page.

  137. Post update

    Nico did have a bit more than that to say in fairness.

    "Unfortunately it wasn't down to my skill, it was just luck that I stayed away from the wall," he added. 

    "Of course it is a little bit of a dent in the confidence. I didn't feel anything before - there was no warning at all - so there is going to be a big analysis."   

    Will it affect him today? Or will, as David Coulthard put it on BBC Two, he be like an etch-a-sketch and wipe it from his memory?

    Not too long until we find out...

  138. How's Rosberg feeling?

    Nico Rosberg

    So just how did Nico Rosberg feel about his tyre exploding and then spinning uncontrollably at nigh on 200mph?

    "It was not a nice experience," he said.

    Understatement of the year?

  139. Get involved #bbcf1

    Solid mug action there Richard. Top man.

  140. What's on and when

    Before we crack on a quick reminder of what is coming up and how you can follow it.

    Final practice gets under way at 10:00 BST, with live coverage on BBC Two and online at 09:55.

    Then qualifying starts at 13:00, with television build-up and coverage 12:10. There will be also 5 live commentary online.

  141. Post update

    Hello! Welcome to our coverage of final practice and qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix.

    What had felt largely like a quiet return for Formula 1 after the summer break exploded when Nico Rosberg's tyre spectacularly failed in second practice.

    Add to that crashes for Marcus Ericsson and Pastor Maldonado and it was a pretty eventful day all told.

  142. Unpleasant things...

    Bee Gees

    Things that are not particularly nice when they happen at high speed:

    1) Swallowing a fly while riding a bicycle.

    2) Listening to a Bee Gees track on loop for 24 hours.

    3) The tyre exploding on the car you are driving.

    One of these happened to Nico Rosberg on Friday. Struggling? Here's a clue...

    Nico Rosberg