Racing purists will not relish the memory that Formula One's return to the historic Spa-Francorchamps circuit for Sunday's Belgian Grand Prix, after an absence of one year, was completely overshadowed by the controversial events around last Thursday's World Motor Sports Council hearing in Paris.
Even with Eau Rouge being a flat-out corner these days, and with its new-look but largely neutered Bus Stop chicane, Spa should be the racing highlight of the F1 calendar, not an afterthought to off-track politics.
The start of the Belgian Grand Prix © LAT
Although the race spectators and world-wide television audience were at least given the prospect of an exciting race, particularly considering how close the McLaren team and drivers had come to being excluded from the rest of the 2007 season as well as 2008.
It was another ostensibly cynical decision by the FIA, in order to prolong the tightrope championship struggle right down to the season finale in Brazil.