'Should be ashamed': F1 world erupts over Belgian GP 'disgrace'

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Max Verstappen, pictured here celebrating his victory at the Belgian Grand Prix.
Max Verstappen was awarded the victory after three laps behind the safety car. Image: Getty

Max Verstappen has won the shortest race in Formula One history, with drivers and fans raging about the farcical scenes at the Belgian Grand Prix.

Verstappen was awarded the victory when the rain-hit race was red-flagged after just three laps were completed behind the safety car.

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Half-points were awarded for only the sixth time ever.

Seven-time world champ Lewis Hamilton - who finished third on Sunday - was among the many to slam officials.

Hamilton said fans should get their money back after they waited hours in the cold and wet without seeing a competitive lap.

The Mercedes driver's championship lead over Verstappen was cut from eight to three points with the result.

"Today wasn't a race. I think the sport made a bad choice today. It's a shame we couldn't do the race tomorrow," Hamilton told Sky Sports.

"I'm really disappointed for the fans, obviously we can't control the weather and I love racing in the rain - but today was something else.

"The fans stayed out, they still had energy but they were robbed of a race today and deserve their money back."

Fans waited for three hours in torrential rain at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit before the safety car led the field from the pitlane.

The race was then stopped after completing the minimum number of laps required for half points to be scored.

Max Verstappen and the FIA Safety Car, pictured here prior to the F1 Grand Prix of Belgium.
A general view of the grid showing Max Verstappen and the FIA Safety Car prior to the F1 Grand Prix of Belgium. (Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images)

Uproar over farcical scenes at Belgian Grand Prix

Britain's George Russell, who put his Williams on the front row with a stunning lap in a wet qualifying session on Saturday, finished second to secure his first Formula One podium, while Australia's Daniel Ricciardo was fourth in his McLaren.

"It's a big shame to not do proper laps but the conditions were very tricky out there," said Verstappen after sealing what will count as his 16th career win and sixth this season.

"Of course it's a win but it's not how you want to win."

The rain never really relented with conditions deteriorating even before the start.

Red Bull's Sergio Perez crashed out on the way to the grid and appeared to be out of the race, but stewards allowed the Mexican driver to start from the pitlane after his team used the prolonged rain delay to complete repairs.

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Their work was in vain as he was classified last.

The governing body FIA explaining that this was in accordance with the sporting regulations.

"For the determination of points, Article 6.5 is applicable, the leader having crossed the Control Line three times, therefore complying with the requirement for the leader to have completed more than two laps in order for half points to be awarded," it said.

Ricciardo did his best to entertain fans in the grandstand from pit-lane during the long delay.

"I obviously feel for them," Ricciardo said.

"We're in it together but circumstances are out of our control."

Fans and commentators flocked to social media to slam the farcical scenes.

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with AAP

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