Kevin Magnussen took his first Formula Renault 3.5 win at Spa on Sunday, despite being the third car to take the checkered flag.
The Carlin driver led the early stages of the race after a start behind the safety car due to heavy rain at the Belgian circuit. He briefly lost that place to Robin Frijns when the pair pitted together at the end of lap eight, but Magnussen charged past his fellow rookie at Les Combes on their out-lap to resume the effective lead of the race.
Later that lap the safety car was deployed after Richie Stanaway had an airborne crash at Les Combes after tagging the back of Carlos Huertas. With the Kiwi having some difficulty getting out of the car, the decision was made to stop the race.
Although Magnussen was effectively the leader, he was fifth on the road as four cars had not completed their mandatory pit stops before the stoppage.
Of those four, Lewis Williamson and Jake Rosenzweig chose not to pit at all once the race restarted, and both crossed the finish line ahead of Magnussen. However, it was confirmed shortly before the finish that both cars would have 60 seconds added to their race time for not making a pit stop.
That left Magnussen the winner, although Williamson made a bit of a statement by parking his car in the race winner's position in parc ferme...
Nick Yelloly took an impressive second for Comtec, having made his pit stop just as the safety car came out, which enabled him to get between Magnussen and Frijns.
Nico Muller was on the tail of the lead fight throughout the race and came home fourth, while championship leader Sam Bird took fifth to rescue a good amount of points after being put to the back of the grid for running out of fuel in qualifying. The ISR driver made a few places up in the first couple of laps, and then made an early stop to try to get some clear track. The red flag ruined the chances of that strategy working, but Bird still charged from 15th at the restart to a top five finish to retain his championship lead.
Jules Bianchi was one of the main front-runners to hit trouble. The Frenchman ran third early on, but lost several places during his pit stop with a problem on the right-rear wheel. He was then relegated to the back of the field when his car failed to leave the startline after the red flag.
Results - 17 laps:
Pos Driver Team Time/Gap
1. Kevin Magnussen Carlin 1h02m43.958s
2. Nick Yelloly Comtec + 2.682s
3. Robin Frijns Fortec + 6.820s
4. Nico Muller Draco + 9.688s
5. Sam Bird ISR + 12.820s
6. Walter Grubmuller P1 + 14.643s
7. Marco Sorensen Lotus + 15.611s
8. Will Stevens Carlin + 17.457s
9. Nikolay Martsenko BVM Target + 20.322s
10. Giovanni Venturini BVM Target + 23.429s
11. Yann Cunha Pons + 27.977s
12. Andre Negrao Draco + 28.427s
13. Kevin Korjus Tech 1 + 29.596s
14. Daniil Move P1 + 36.684s
15. Anton Nebylitskiy RFR + 41.765s
16. Lewis Williamson Arden + 49.840s
17. Jules Bianchi Tech 1 + 54.040s
18. Jake Rosenzweig ISR + 56.803s
Alexander Rossi Arden 12 laps
Carlos Huertas Fortec 8 laps
Richie Stanaway Lotus 8 laps
Arthur Pic DAMS 7 laps
Vittorio Ghirelli Comtec 6 laps
Zoel Amberg Pons 6 laps
Mikhail Aleshin RFR 5 laps
Lucas Foresti DAMS 4 laps