- August 27 down the years
Hakkinen wins battle of nerve against SchumacherWhat happened on this day in Formula One history?
Mika Hakkinen and Michael Schumacher went head-to-head at the Belgian Grand Prix, producing the overtaking manoeuvre of the season. Schumacher was leading after Hakkinen had spun at Stavelot earlier in the race but the McLaren was the faster car overall. Schumacher put up a spirited defence once Hakkinen was on his tail meaning the McLaren driver had to do something special to find a way past. With just four laps to go Hakkinen got a great run through Eau Rouge and was right on the gearbox of Schumacher down the Kemmel straight. As the pair approached the braking zone for Les Combes they came across Ricardo Zonta's BAR, Schumacher went to the left but Hakkinen jinked to the right and the three cars went side-by-side towards the right hander. Hakkinen had the inside line and managed to sneak in front of Schumacher who cut back across Zonta but could not defend the position. Hakkinen went on to win the race but, four races later, Schumacher took the title.
Murray Walker was left to commentate on the Belgian Grand Prix by himself after his fellow BBC employee James Hunt failed to turn up. The 1976 world champion was a favourite among fans but often incensed Walker with his laid back attitude to life and off the cuff remarks. In the end Martin Brundle and Jonny Herbert made their way up to the commentary booth after retiring from the rain-soaked race. Hunt hadn't missed a great deal as Ayrton Senna led from start to finish but the changing conditions caused plenty of drama further down the field.
1976 Favourite to become Australia's first world champion since Alan Jones in 1980, Mark Webber was born in Queanbeyan in New South Wales. Webber burst onto the F1 scene with a surprise fifth-place finish in a sluggish Minardi at his debut race at his home grand prix in 2002. After a testing couple of years with Jaguar Racing and further disappointment with Williams, Webber began to find his feet at Red Bull Racing, ending years of frustration as F1's nearly man and developing into a genuine championship contender.
Felipe Massa took his maiden Formula One victory at the Turkish Grand Prix following an uncharacteristic mistake from Ferrari team-mate Michael Schumacher that handed him the win. Schumacher had to wait behind Massa in the pitlane, costing him time after a safety car incident, and, trying to make up the time before his second stop, he ran wide and lost time that probably would have put him second ahead of Fernando Alonso. With the title so delicately balanced, Ferrari may well have given the signal for Massa to let Schumacher by but, as it was, he had to settle for third.
In one of the most outstanding drives of his glittering career, Michael Schumacher won the Belgian Grand Prix after starting 16th on the grid. Although it was a brilliant performance, it was also a controversial one because of his blocking of Damon Hill when the German was on slicks in the wet and the Englishman was on wets - travelling much faster. After the race Hill was typically civil but he felt sufficiently upset to go straight to Schumacher to express his feelings. Later he refused to reveal what he had said to the German. The stewards agreed with Hill and Schumacher was given a one-race ban, suspended for four grands prix.
Mario Andretti led home Ronnie Peterson for a straightforward 1-2 ahead of Niki Lauda at the Dutch Grand Prix as the top three drivers on the grid finished in the same order. Victory effectively guaranteed Andretti the title with Peterson, the established number two, twelve points adrift.
Jack Brabham won the inaugural formula One Grand Prix in Canada, leading home Brabham team-mate Denny Hulme and Dan Gurney. It was Brabham's tenth grand prix victory and Hulme's tenth podium finish.
1959 Gerhard Berger was born in Wörgl, Austria. Best known for providing the ideal foil to Ayrton Senna as his team-mate in 1990-92, Berger won ten grands prix and went on to run BMW's Formula One programme from 1998 to 2003.