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Jolyon Palmer
Former F1 driver Jolyon Palmer, who left Renault during the 2017 season, has joined the BBC team to offer insight and analysis from the point of view of the competitors.
Aside from a big first-corner crash, the 2018 Belgian Grand Prix probably won't live too long in the memory for many. But for the Force India team, it was one of the most significant weekends of their existence.
Just four weeks ago, at the Hungarian Grand Prix, the team entered administration as mounting long-term debts finally caught up with them. They remained hopeful of salvation, but things were bleak and only deepened throughout that race weekend.
Both drivers limped out of qualifying at the first hurdle, ending up in 18th and 19th on the grid at the Hungaroring, and subsequently finished the racewell outside the points.
Force India are the ultimate underdog team of recent years. They have one of the smallest budgets in Formula 1, but have punched well above their weight, scoring numerous against-the-odds podiums (including one in Baku this year).
But at the end of July, the outfit known as the best 'bang-for-buck' performers was in turmoil, on the precipice of collapse and with an on-track performance to match.
Fast forward four weeks and things have never looked rosier for them.

Bright start of a new dawn

From left, Esteban Ocon, Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Perez
Force India drivers Esteban Ocon, left, and Sergio Perez, right, battle for position at the start of the Belgian Grand Prix
Bought out by a consortium led by Canadian businessman Lawrence Stroll, father of Williams driver Lance, more than 400 jobs at the factory have been saved, and the team reconstituted as a 'new' entry, with a new-ish name, Racing Point Force India.
More memorably, last weekend saw one of their best ever team qualifying performances - Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez took third and fourth on the grid in a crazy, wet top 10 shoot-out in Spa on Saturday.
It could have been so different, as Perez survived one of the biggest moments I've ever witnessed at Eau Rouge, on slick tyres on a wet track.
It is a notoriously punishing corner and Perez absolutely rally-crossed it, sliding at high speed right next to the barriers. But he held on majestically.
Both drivers did a superb job and really showed the talent they both possess.
Finishing fifth and sixth in the race was ultimately the most they could do in a car far slower than those in the 'A' race ahead, but Perez's attempt to hold off Valtteri Bottas' Mercedes in the closing stages was valiant.

A horrible situation to perform in

Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez
Force India were near to collapse but with their future secured delivered a superb weekend performance
The whole season must have been uncomfortable for Perez and Ocon. We now know how close Force India were to collapse, and being in a team on the precipice is a horrible situation for a driver to have to perform in.
When I was third driver for Lotus in 2015, it was a similar situation. For the entire year, the team was scraping by with last-minute sponsorship deals left, right and centre, and a bit of goodwill to match. For the drivers, though, it is extremely tough.
I was only doing some free practice sessions in 2015, but the precarious nature of the team upped the pressure and responsibility massively.
Firstly, turning up not knowing if we would be racing or not, it was tough to get into the right mental space to drive.
Secondly, knowing that a lack of spare parts meant any damage could result in the team not being able to race, or even worse, collapse completely.
It made the job Romain Grosjean did to take a podium in Spa 2015 even more remarkable. As he celebrated, the bailiffs were literally impounding the Lotus cars and equipment in the Belgian paddock.
Lotus moved on and turned into Renault at the end of the year following a buyout, and Force India look to be through the chaos and unpredictability of their current predicament.
It is a testament to both drivers that they have remained so professional throughout, and ultimately managed to keep delivering on track through difficult times.
I had my first F1 test with Force India back in Abu Dhabi 2014 and I know first-hand how good they are, how hard working, but mainly what a great atmosphere they have in the team.
That must have helped them through the tough moments. It's good to see their future secure again and marked with a superb weekend performance.
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