For the whole race I kept struggling with the balance of the car. It never felt like it should have done. On some laps it was getting better, but most of the time we were lacking the grip and the pace. It was not an easy weekend, we were fighting in all conditions, in the dry and even more in the wet. This is something that we have to fix for these kinds of circuit. I’m disappointed as the result is not what we wanted. For sure if you take the pure layout of the track it’s not an easy one for us, which is unfortunate at our home grand prix. I would be surprised if it’s the same story at the next race, because on paper the race in Singapore should be better for us. Now we have to go there and do our best.
Lewis Hamilton wins Italian Grand Prix as Mercedes dominates
Lewis Hamilton produced a dominant drive to win the Italian Grand Prix and seize the Formula 1 world championship lead outright for the first time this season.
The Mercedes driver led away from pole and dictated the race from the front, crossing the line 4.4 seconds ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas with Ferrari title rival Sebastian Vettel third, 36.3s behind the leader.
It was Hamilton’s sixth victory of the season and moves him three points clear of Vettel in the drivers’ championship with Bottas a further 41 adrift.
Hamilton made a good start from pole, moving right across the track to defend from Lance Stroll and leading into Turn 1.
Esteban Ocon, starting third, took advantage of Stroll getting baulked to sweep around the outside and settle into second.
Further back, Bottas banged wheels with Kimi Raikkonen as they came through the first chicane, eventually making a pass stick to take for fourth.
Raikkonen snatched the position back at the second chicane, but Bottas then swept around the outside of Parabolica to reclaim the place.
Bottas then took third on lap three from Stroll before breezing past Ocon the following lap to move into second before setting off in pursuit of Hamilton.
The Finn closed the gap but couldn’t get within two seconds off his team-mate and ultimately finished second to secure Mercedes’s third one-two of the year.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo produced an impressive recovery drive from 16th, running a very long stint on the softs to move up the order in the first.
Ricciardo emerged on fresh super-softs after his only stop and put a great move on Raikkonen for fourth, then set about chasing Vettel, taking chunks of time out of the Ferrari driver but ultimately running out of laps.
Earlier in the race Raikkonen, who complained of a problem with the rear end of his car, had pitted early in a bid to leapfrog Ocon and Stroll.
He partially succeeded, getting ahead of Stroll who was delayed in his stop with a sticky left-rear tyre.
But he had to pass Ocon on track, launching an attack on the approach to the first chicane to take the place and going on to finish fifth, ahead of Ocon.
Stroll challenged Ocon in the closing stages but couldn’t make a move stick, and in the end he held off a spirited attack from Williams team-mate Felipe Massa to take seventh with Sergio Perez failing to take advantage of the squabble to end up ninth.
Massa survived contact with Perez and Max Verstappen early in the race to take eighth.
Verstappen was furious with Massa when they collided at Turn 1, the contact giving the Red Bull a front right puncture and dropping him back to the field.
But he recovered to take 10th but only after brief contact with Kevin Magnussen on the approach to the second chicane after he’d passed the Haas at the start of the lap.
It was a miserable race for McLaren, with Stoffel Vandoorne retiring after reporting "no power" and team-mate Fernando Alonso following suit on the penultimate lap at the request of the team.
Jolyon Palmer was on the fringes of the top 10, but was asked to retire his Renault by the team after it had discovered a problem.
Italian GP result
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||53||40.335s|
|6||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||53||1m11.528s|
|9||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||53||1m15.276s|
|10||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||52||1 Lap|
|11||Kevin Magnussen||Haas/Ferrari||52||1 Lap|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||52||1 Lap|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Renault||52||1 Lap|
|14||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||52||1 Lap|
|15||Romain Grosjean||Haas/Ferrari||52||1 Lap|
|16||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber/Ferrari||51||2 Laps|
|–||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren/Honda||33||Power Unit|
Italian Grand Prix – “Not where we wanted to be”
Kimi’s comments follow similar lines: “Today in wet conditions it felt quite tricky all the time. We struggled to get the tires working, in most places we had no grip and it was very slippery. It was difficult to go through the corners and be able to push and go fast. The starting position is not ideal but we’ll start in a bit better position thanks to penalties for the other cars. Now we have to wait and see how the weather will turn out. I’m sure that in the dry conditions it will be a lot different, our car should be working quite well”.
Raikkonen, who was well off Vettel’s pace in Q1 and Q2, but ended up just under a tenth quicker in the final segment, said: "We are not fast enough. From my car, I don’t know about the other car, but I struggle a lot with the grip.
"Either we didn’t make the tyres work, or whatever it is, it’s very slippery.
"Especially with the low downforce, you cannot put enough force in the tyres and it’s a never-ending story then."
Lewis Hamilton beats Michael Schumacher’s F1 pole record at Monza
Lewis Hamilton claimed a record 69th Formula 1 pole position in a rain-affected Italian Grand Prix qualifying session, beating Red Bull’s Max Verstappen to top spot as Ferrari struggled.
Qualifying was delayed for more than two and a half hours, after a heavy crash for Romain Grosjean’s Haas on the pit straight caused the session to be halted and then suspended as heavy rain deluged the Monza F1 circuit.
The intensity of the rain varied throughout qualifying when it finally resumed, and a break in the rain in the closing minutes of Q3 allowed Verstappen and Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo to briefly lock out the front row before Hamilton’s late show – which helped him surpass Michael Schumacher’s record of 68 F1 poles that he equaled last time out in Belgium.
"It’s very hard to find the words to explain how I feel – I’m trying to figure it out right this second," said Hamilton.
"I wish I had something really iconic to say. I heard it has only switched hands a couple of times in 50 years, 60 years.
"I am very proud of what has been achieved and it is crazy. I have to keep going and keep extending it."
Though exciting, the battle was rendered meaningless by grid penalties for both Red Bulls for making illegal engine component changes ahead of Friday practice.
Verstappen is set to receive a 20-place penalty and Ricciardo a 25-place penalty, which will promote Williams rookie Lance Stroll to a sensational front row start for Sunday’s race.
Stroll lapped inside the top five in Q2 and was fourth fastest in Q3, only three tenths slower than Verstappen.
Force India’s Esteban Ocon was fifth fastest, while Hamilton’s Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who set the pace in Q1, abandoned his final flying lap so wound up only sixth on the final timesheet.
That was one place better than the Ferrari drivers managed, with Kimi Raikkonen seventh and championship leader Sebastian Vettel eighth as they struggled for grip on the Pirelli wet tyres.
The second Williams of Felipe Massa and Stoffel Vandoorne’s McLaren-Honda rounded out the top 10.
Sergio Perez looked to have joined Force India team-mate Ocon in making Q3 after a late improvement in Q2, but his lap was 0.002s slower than Ocon’s and failed to get the job done after a last-gasp effort from Vandoorne.
Perez should start inside the top 10 anyway, owing to those grid penalties for the Red Bull drivers.
Nico Hulkenberg sat inside the top 10 after the initial Q2 runs, but his Renault struggled for grip on intermediates on his second run and slipped to 12th. He will drop further back thanks to a 10-place grid penalty for changing his MGU-H before final practice.
Fernando Alonso, who faces a 35-place grid penalty of his own, made only one run in Q2, but it was good enough to put his McLaren-Honda 13th, ahead of Toro Rosso pairing Daniil Kvyat and Carlos Sainz Jr, who also faces a 10-place grid penalty.
Kevin Magnussen’s Haas, Jolyon Palmer’s Renault and the two Saubers were eliminated in Q1, along with Grosjean.
Magnussen made a late improvement on intermediate tyres after the initial runs on full wets, but this was not enough for him to escape the drop zone.
The Haas driver finished up 0.701s adrift of Sainz’s Toro Rosso, while Palmer’s Renault was bumped to 17th.
Palmer is set to take a 15-place grid penalty for engine component swaps ahead of final practice, so will drop behind Marcus Ericsson, Pascal Wehrlein and Grosjean in the final reckoning.
Ericsson trailed Sauber team-mate Wehrlein by almost a second after the wet-tyre running, but beat him to the 18th quickest time by 0.143s with a late improvement on intermediates.
Grosjean didn’t take part in the restarted session after his earlier crash.
Italian GP grid
|3||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m37.719s||2.165s|
|9||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m37.582s||2.028s|
|10||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m38.245s||2.691s|
|14||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m36.702s||1.148s|
|16||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m38.526s||2.972s|
|17||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m36.841s||1.287s|
Felipe Massa fastest as Monza F1 Saturday practice is near-washout
Third and final Formula 1 practice for the Italian Grand Prix was a near-total washout, with Williams duo Felipe Massa and Lance Stroll fastest of those to set a time.
Showers overnight were followed by heavier rain on Saturday morning at Monza, leading to the cancellation of GP3 qualifying.
F1 race director Charlie Whiting then delayed the start of F1 practice "indefinitely" as the risk of aquaplaning was high.
The clock for the 60 minute session started on time, as there has to be a two-hour gap between the end of FP3 and the start of qualifying.
The safety car headed out several times to assess the track, and at just past the halfway point deemed the conditions had improved.
The session started with 16 minutes remaining, with Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo the first driver to head out to brave the puddles on a set of wet Pirelli tyres.
All 20 drivers eventually headed out to assess the track conditions, but only seven completed timed laps.
The conditions remained treacherous, with Toro Rosso duo Carlos Sainz and Daniil Kvyat locking up on the run to the first corner and missing the first chicane.
Sainz completed the most running, with five laps, while Massa topped the times with a 1m40.660s to end the session just over two-tenths faster than Stroll.
Nico Hulkenberg, Sainz, Jolyon Palmer, Marcus Ericsson and Kvyat were the other drivers to complete timed laps.
The conditions meant teams were unable to carry out the usual qualifying simulations.
|4||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m41.515s||0.855s||5|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m45.033s||4.373s||4|
|8||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||–||–||1|
|9||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||–||–||1|
|16||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||–||–||2|
|19||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||–||–||1|
Italian Grand Prix: Bottas beats Hamilton in second Monza practice
Valtteri Bottas edged out Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Lewis Hamilton to the fastest time in second practice for the Italian Grand Prix.
Bottas clocked a 1m21.406s on the super-soft compound tyres, 0.056 seconds ahead of Hamilton, with Sebastian Vettel just a tenth further back in third.
The track was green early on as the morning rain had washed away the fresh rubber put down in opening practice.
Hamilton led the way after the opening third of the session with Mercedes focusing on running the soft tyres initially.
When attention turned to qualifying simulations, Vettel went fastest with a 1m21.546s, which was fractionally slower than Hamilton’s leading morning time.
Bottas then demoted Vettel and though Hamilton looked on course to usurp his team-mate, he lost time in the final sector and ended up second.
Kimi Raikkonen was fourth quickest, competing his quickest time on the second flying lap on the super-softs, as Ferrari provided more of a threat to Mercedes than it had earlier in the day.
Max Verstappen was the leading Red Bull in fifth, one second off the pace, with team-mate Daniel Ricciardo three tenths further back in sixth.
Both drivers face a tricky weekend as a raft of engine component changes means Ricciardo and Verstappen will receive grid penalties of 20 and 15-places respectively.
The McLarens of Stoffel Vandoorne and Fernando Alonso, who is set to start from the back after a 35-place grid penalty for engine component changes, showed an impressive turn of speed in seventh and eighth respectively, 1.5s off the pace.
Esteban Ocon and Felipe Massa, who aborted his first low-fuel run when he put two wheels on the gravel on the exit of the second chicane, completed the top 10.
Carlos Sainz Jr, who has a 10-place grid penalty after his Toro Rosso team changed the MGU-H, was 11th quickest.
His session ended early when his Renault engine let go and he stopped after the second chicane.
His team-mate Daniil Kvyat, who was 18th quickest and set his best time on the softs, ended his session early when he was called back into the pits as his team found a problem with the car.
The Renaults of Nico Hulkenberg, who spent much of the latter part of the session in the garage, and Jolyon Palmer were evenly matched in 12th and 13th, with just under half a tenth separating them.
Lance Stroll recovered from a spin at the Ascari chicane to end the session 15th quickest, four tenths adrift of Williams team-mate Massa.
Haas duo Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen were just over two seconds off the pace in 16th and 17th.
In the closing minutes of the session, Magnussen stopped at the Ascari chicane reporting "broken suspension", leading to the deployment of the virtual safety car.
|5||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m22.409s||1.003s||34|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m22.752s||1.346s||22|
|9||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m22.977s||1.571s||43|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m23.150s||1.744s||21|
|14||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m23.352s||1.946s||43|
|18||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m24.253s||2.847s||28|
Italian GP FP1: Lewis Hamilton leads Mercedes 1-2 at Monza
Lewis Hamilton beat Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Valtteri Bottas to the fastest time in first practice for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza.
Hamilton clocked a 1m21.537s on the super-soft Pirelli tyres to finish 0.435 seconds clear of Bottas, with Ferrari’s championship leader Sebastian Vettel 1.115s off the pace in third.
With the threat of rain looming, drivers headed out early in FP1 in order to maximise the dry but cool conditions.
Bottas led the way after the opening half an hour, the Finn clocking a 1m22.086s on the soft tyres.
Mercedes then switched to the super-softs, with Hamilton jumping to the top of the timesheets with a 1m21.868s.
The three-time world champion completed a flurry of laps on that compound, improving to a 1m21.729s and then a 1m21.537s before pitting.
Light rain eventually came with around 15 minutes of the session to go, with race control reporting the track was slippery in sector two, and everyone retreated back to the pits.
The Ferraris then headed out on super-softs, completing a practice starts at the end of the pitlane, before coasting around and returning to the pits.
The rain then eased, allowing another burst of laps in the final minutes of the session.
Kimi Raikkonen ended up fourth quickest, a fraction behind team-mate Vettel, with Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen a tenth further back in fifth and sixth respectively.
Ricciardo and Verstappen are set for a tough weekend after Red Bull chose to change Renault engine components ahead of the session, meaning they will take 20 and 15-place grid penalties respectively.
Sergio Perez pipped Force India team-mate Esteban Ocon to seventh while Stoffel Vandoorne was the highest placed McLaren in ninth with team-mate Fernando Alonso 15th.
Honda fitted an upgraded power unit, known as ‘spec 3.7’, to Alonso’s car for first practice, sparking a 35-place grid penalty for Sunday’s race.
The Spaniard then ended the session early so Honda could switch back to an older spec unit – the one Alonso raced at Spa – for the remainder of the weekend.
Honda wanted to use the session to test performance, but save mileage on the engine for Singapore, as it feels a good result is possible at the next race.
Felipe Massa completed the top 10, two seconds off the pace, but nearly half a second quicker than Williams team-mate Lance Stroll.
With rain expected, Haas changed plans and stood down Ferrari junior Antonio Giovinazzi to allow Kevin Magnussen to get running in dry conditions.
It is expected Giovinazzi will get an opportunity to drive in FP1 in Singapore instead.
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m22.742s||1.205s||28|
|6||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m22.749s||1.212s||23|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m23.317s||1.780s||36|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m23.400s||1.863s||34|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m23.680s||2.143s||22|
|14||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m24.012s||2.475s||27|
Team-mate Kimi Raikkonen also feels that the potential of the SF70H hasn’t been fully exploited yet: “It was not an easy day: for whatever reason, it was difficult to drive and put the car where I wanted. I was looking for a better balance overall. For sure we have some work to do for tomorrow, but that’s a normal story on Friday. It’s difficult to say something about the performance; it’s only the first free practice, lap times don’t mean much and we don’t know what other people are doing. If we can get the car more to our liking, then we can improve and be faster”.
Kimi pleased with race pace: “we’re on the right direction”
Kimi Raikkonen: “I think that today we were closer to our rivals than we expected after qualifying. Obviously we were on different tactics, but we did the correct things, the right choice with tires and the fastest race we could. We had a pretty good speed but we were not fast enough for gaining a better position. Fourth position is not exactly what we were looking for, but this is not the easiest circuit for us against the Mercedes, and we did our maximum. With Sebastian we were more or less driving behind each other and when you race against your teammate there’s not much that you can do, we both know what the other guy is going to do. After the start it was a bit tricky, I got close after the first pit stop, but then he was able to pull away. In the last few weekends it seems that we are going in the right direction, now we have to keep trying and improving doing our maximum. Every race is a different story, a small mistake here and there from somebody might give us a chance, who knows…”