Charles Leclerc and Scuderia Ferrari sent the fans wild, as they packed out the Monza circuit in their thousands to witness the Maranello squad take a win at this track for the first time since 2010. This was Charles’ second ever F1 win, coming just eight days after the first one in Spa-Francorchamps. The Monegasque spent the whole race fending off the advances of the Mercedes duo of Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton, who joined him on the podium in that order. This was win number 237 for the Scuderia, its 19th at Monza. Sebastian Vettel’s day was not so memorable. He spun at the Variante Ascari on lap 6 and then had to fight his way back from last to 13th at the flag.
In the final part of the race, Charles managed to fend off Bottas, crossing the line to win on the wings of enthusiasm of the tifosi who packed the stands. Bottas was just 850 thousandths of a second behind. Sebastian also stopped again, fitting the Mediums on lap 41, after which he made up six places to finish 13th. The Formula 1 World Championship resumes in a fortnight’s time in Singapore
A fantastic day for Renault saw Daniel Ricciardo claim a season’s best fourth place ahead of team mate Nico Hulkenberg in sixth. Despite starting eighth – rather than 17th last weekend – Red Bull’s Alex Albon ended up one place lower than he had done in Spa, coming home in sixth, ahead of the Racing Point of Sergio Perez, who just managed to hold off Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, who ended up eighth having started P19.
Antonio Giovinazzi chose an opportune moment to score just his second points-finish of the year, coming home ninth for Alfa Romeo, while Lando Norris completed the top 10 for McLaren
“There are no words to describe the emotions I felt during the race, after the race, or on the podium. It felt ten times stronger than anything I have ever experienced in my whole career. It was very special.
When I arrive at a race weekend, I usually don’t think about winning, I just try to do the best job possible and tell myself that the results will come. But to be honest, seeing all of the support from our tifosi here in Monza this weekend, the only thing I could think of was winning and that’s what we did, so I am very happy.
The race was exciting. The first stint was quite controlled, but the second stint was a bit less strong on my side, because I had to focus on the car behind me a lot as the gap was closing. It was very difficult and I had a lot of pressure on me.
I’d like to thank the whole team for all their hard work. Nothing would be possible without them. It was a shame for Seb, who definitely had the potential to be on the podium with me. For the next few races, we have to keep our focus, our motivation, and hopefully the results will follow.”
I was trying everything to get close enough to Charles to make a move on him in the final laps, but the Ferraris were very quick on the straights this weekend, so it was difficult to get close enough. I was pushing as hard as I could, but every time I got really close, I started to lock-ups the fronts. While it’s disappointing that we didn’t win, our performance today was actually quite promising. We came to Monza expecting this to be one of the most difficult races of the season for us, but we could really challenge the Ferraris, so that’s good to see. It was a good race overall from that perspective and I think we can leave Italy with a positive feeling. On paper, the upcoming races should play a little more towards our strengths and I’m looking forward to a good fight with Ferrari and Red Bull over the next weeks.
Congratulations to Charles today, he did a great job, especially considering the pressure Valtteri and I were putting on him. The Ferrari was very quick in a straight line, so it was difficult to stay close to them. I think it just wasn’t our day today, it’s always disappointing to follow another car so closely but not be able to take the lead. But in the end, we’re leaving Italy with more points in the Constructors’ Championship and ultimately that is what matters. I’m not looking to the next race thinking it will be easy for us; instead we’re going to go to the factory next week and go through the same process, looking for ways to improve our car, improve our processes over a race weekend, and I hope that I can do a better job in Singapore. I personally cherish this battle between Ferrari, Red Bull and us, so I want it to continue.