SPA-FRANCORCHAMPS (Belgium) • Defending two-time world champion Lewis Hamilton extended his lead in this year's Formula One title race to 28 points when he claimed a near-flawless victory ahead of Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg in the Belgian Grand Prix.
Starting from his 10th pole position of the season and sixth in succession, the 30-year-old Briton dominated with some ease as he finished a controlled 2.058 seconds clear of the German.
Hamilton now has 227 points and Rosberg 199.
It was Hamilton's second victory at the Belgian race, having won for McLaren in 2010. It was his sixth of the season and the 39th of his career. It was also his 80th podium, equalling the feat of the late great Brazilian Ayrton Senna.
"Today was a dream and the car was fantastic all weekend," he said. "I was never in a position where I felt nervous, I had great pace in the car.
- BELGIAN GRAND PRIX
1. Lewis Hamilton (Gbr)
2. Nico Rosberg (Ger)
3. Romain Grosjean (Fra)
4. Daniil Kvyat (Rus)
Red Bull 00:45.692
5. Sergio Perez (Mex)
Force India 00:53.997
6. Felipe Massa (Bra)
7. Kimi Raikkonen (Fin)
1. Hamilton 227
2. Rosberg 199
3. Vettel 160
1. Mercedes 426
2. Ferrari 242
3. Williams 161
"There was no real need to push more than I had to."
But he said that it was too soon to talk about winning the drivers' championship.
Rosberg, whose wife is due to give birth to their first child at any time, said he was keen to get home. But he added: "Lewis did a great job and he deserved to win."
Four-time champion German Sebastian Vettel, in his 150th race, looked likely to finish third for Ferrari in their 900th Grand Prix race. But he suffered a right rear tyre failure on the penultimate lap as the team risked running him on a one-stop strategy.
That spectacular incident ensured that Frenchman Romain Grosjean, who had mounted a thrilling attack for Lotus in the final laps, took third place in an enthralling race.
It was his first podium of the season for the troubled Lotus team, who have faced severe financial problems, and his first top-three finish since the 2013 United States Grand Prix.
Russian Daniil Kvyat followed up his podium finish in Hungary with a bold drive to fourth for Red Bull. He was ahead of Mexican Sergio Perez (Force India), Brazilian Felipe Massa (Williams) and Finn Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari).
Belgian-born Dutch teenager Max Verstappen thrilled his fans in the crowd by driving from 16th on the grid to take eighth place for Toro Rosso. He was ahead of Finn Valtteri Bottas (Williams) and Swede Marcus Ericsson (Sauber).