F1: Leclerc Wins Thrilling Italian Grand Prix

Charles Leclerc celebrates in Parc Ferme at Monza, following a memorable victory for Ferrari in the 2019 Italian Grand Prix. Image Courtesy of the FIA.

Charles Leclerc claimed a stunning win at the Italian Grand Prix for Ferrari in Monza.

Leclerc Makes History

Leclerc held off two charging Mercedes to take his second consecutive win, and Ferrari’s first win at Monza since 2010.

The victory gives Ferrari their 19th win at Monza, extending their record of most wins at any one track by a single constructor.

Leclerc: “There are no words to describe the emotions I’ve had on during the race, after the race, on the podium.”

“Whatever emotions I had today, it was the most I have I had in my whole career.”

The adoring Tifosi rejoice as Charles Leclerc celebrates victory for Ferrari in the 2019 Italian Grand Prix. Image courtesy of Pirelli Sport.

Vettel On Thin Ice

Leclerc’s sister car of Sebastian Vettel had a torrid race, while closing in on Valterri Bottas, Vettel span on the exit of Ascari.

A sight the tifosi are too used to seeing over the last couple of seasons.

During his rejoin to the track the German collided with Stroll. Subsequently the German was given a ten-second stop-go penalty.

Vettel was also handed 3 penalty points on his license for the incident, leaving him just 3 points away from a race ban.

If Vettel was to receive 3 more points before the American Grand Prix.

This would force Ferrari into replacing him with either former Mercedes Junior Pascal Werhlein or former Toro Rosso driver Brendon Hartley.

Mercedes Give It Everything

Leclerc came home just ahead of Valtteri Bottas’ Mercedes who attempted a late charge on the Monégasque driver during the final laps.

To the delight of the tifosi, the Finn could not make use of his tyre advantage, ultimately unable to overtake the Ferrari after he ran deep into Turn 1.

Bottas: “I’m gutted. I was trying everything to get him. I think it’s the best we could do today. We were trying everything we could.”

Despite giving it their all, Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas were both unable to dethrone Charles Leclerc at Monza. Image sourced from @MercedesAMGF1 via Twitter.

Lewis Hamilton brought his Silver Arrows home in third place, after a lengthy battle with Leclerc during the first half of the race.

Unfortunately for Hamilton, a lock up into the first chicane demoted him to third, allowing Bottas to try and hunt down Leclerc’s Ferrari.

As consolation, Hamilton took the bonus point for fastest lap after Mercedes opted for a late pit stop

Hamilton: “Congratulations to Ferrari and Charles, they did a great job. There was a lot of pressure from Valtteri and I.”

Renault Hit Back

Renault produced a near-dream race in Monza. The duo of Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg secured the teams best finish of the season, in fourth and fifth places respectively.

This dealt a huge blow to McLaren’s grip on fourth in the Constructors’, after the British team lost a big points haul. A botched pit stop forced Carlos Sainz Jr. to retire from sixth place.

Déjà Vu For Red Bull

Alexander Albon replicated his strong performance at Spa-Francorchamps en-route to sixth place at Monza. Image courtesy of the Red Bull Content Pool.

Alexander Albon once again struggled in the opening half of the race.

During a battle with Carlos Sainz Jr., Albon attempted a pass around the outside at Lesmo One and was pushed wide onto the gravel

After dropping back, he was soon hit with a five-second penalty for skipping the first chicane for ‘gaining a lasting advantage’ over Kevin Magnussen’s Haas.

Fortunately for the Thai driver, he came home in sixth place after a strong final stint passing multiple cars, which mirrored his phenomenal Red Bull debut in Spa.

The Mexican Maestro

Sergio Perez started from the back in his Racing Point, but the Mexican who just secured a three-year deal with the team was able to produce a stunning drive to seventh place.

Keeping behind Max Verstappen, who’s Red Bull struggled with power issues during the latter stages of the race.

Additionally, Verstappen was also involved in an incident on the run into Turn 1, forcing a front wing change after the first lap.

Like team-mate Albon, the Dutchman stormed his way through the pack on his second stint, finishing up in eighth place from the back row of the grid.

Antonio’s Redemption

After crashing out of the points last time out in Belgium, Antonio Giovinazzi had a home race to remember as the Italian driver took his best ever F1 finish, bringing his Alfa Romeo home in ninth.

The 2019 Italian Grand Prix saw Antonio Giovinazzi record his second points-scoring finish of the season for Alfa Romeo. Image sourced from @AlfaRomeoRacing via Twitter.

Conversely, it was a day to forget for Daniil Kvyat & Toro Rosso, who suffered an engine failure whilst in sixth places.

Lando Norris, came into this weekend with an engine penalty, performed a brilliant recovery drive from the Brit to finish tenth, taking the final point for the McLaren squad.

Lance Stroll looked poised for a strong finish but after a collision at the Ascari chicane, the Canadian was hit by a rejoining Sebastian Vettel, who lost the car on entry just moments after.

With Lance being handed a drive-through penalty after forcing Pierre Gasly into gravel in an attempt to rejoin the track.