Sunday, September 6, 2015

2015 Formula 1 : Hamilton wins at Monza

2015 F1 - Italian Grand Prix Champion : Lewis Hamilton #44 Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team

Lewis Hamilton's win in the Italian Grand Prix could yet be under threat after Mercedes was called to the stewards to explain why tyre pressures on his and Nico Rosberg's car were too low.

Felipe Massa #5 Scuderia Ferrari

On a weekend dominated by Pirelli tyres and the introduction of new tyre pressure guidelines, technical delegates sampled the tyres of Mercedes and Ferrari, with both Hamilton and Rosberg found to be 0.3psi and 1.1psi too low respectively.

Stewards have subsequently summoned Mercedes representatives to explain, with penalties potentially to be levied to Hamilton.

"On the grid and after the five minutes signal the tyre starting pressure and tread surface temperature of the left hand side rear tyre was checked on car numbers 44, 06, 05 and 07 and were compared to the specifications of the official F1 tyre supplier. (19.5psi)

"The measured minimum tyre pressure of the left hand side rear tyre on car 44 was 0.3psi below the specified minimum tyre starting pressure and the measure minimum tyre pressure of car 06 was 1.1psi.

The revelation explains why Hamilton was asked to push in the closing stages of the Italian Grand Prix in anticipation of a possible time penalty being applied.

This penalty could be 25secs, which if this proves correct, means Hamilton keeps his win over Sebastian Vettel by just 0.042s. However, it could prove more lenient or indeed harsher.

Updated :

Hamilton and Rosberg are under investigation for having incorrect tyre pressures when checked on the grid. Team representative summoned to stewards

Lewis Hamilton taken a significant stride towards the 2015 Formula 1 World Championship title after strolling to a seventh victory of the season in the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, while main title rival Nico Rosberg failed to finish after his car cried enough with two laps remaining.

With many daring to dream that Ferrari could take the fight to Mercedes on home soil, Hamilton dismissed those hopes by enjoying arguably his most dominant afternoon of the year as he led from the first corner and simply extended his advantage all the way to the chequered flag.

By contrast, it was a disastrous day for Rosberg who, after spending his race trying claw back ground from a poor start that left him sixth initially, retired from third position with just two laps remaining, the 'old' Mercedes power unit giving way just short of the chequered flag. The margin between them now stands at 52 points with just seven races remaining.

Indeed, Hamilton had always looked destined to put more air between himself and his team-mate as he sprinted away out front, his cause was undoubtedly aided from the word go when Kimi Raikkonen – having qualified on his first front row since China 2013 – stalled the Ferrari, much to the disdain of the tifosi packed grandstands.

Raikkonen's loss, which at least prompted an entertaining charge from last, was team-mate Sebastian Vettel's gain as he assumed the mantle of Hamilton's biggest rival, but it was soon clear the Briton would not be giving the fans what they ultimately wanted on this occasion.

Indeed, despite pre-race fears about the reliability of the upgraded power unit following Rosberg's Saturday troubles, Hamilton was quick and consistent throughout

Instead, it was Rosberg that would count the cost of reliability problems as he faces a title challenge that is steadily slipping away. Indeed, having been forced to race with a 'compromised' engine, Rosberg nonetheless acquitted himself as best he could, despite Raikkonen's bungled start forcing evasive action that would demote him to fifth in the first stint behind both Williams'.

A rapid pit-stop turnaround though would see Rosberg leapfrog Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas, but as he was attempting to bridge the chasm to Vettel up ahead, his engine cried enough with little more than a lap remaining, consigning him and Mercedes to a first DNF of 2015.

His exit duly sparked up a renewed battle for the podium between the two Williams drivers, Felipe Massa coming under extreme pressure from team-mate Valtteri Bottas as they entered the last lap. The Brazilian managed to hold firm by the smallest of margins, marking a second consecutive podium at Monza.

Following his first lap dramas, Raikkonen's visibly charged climb back through the field would take him as far as fifth position, an otherwise disappointing reward on a day where only his second podium of the season was seemingly in the offing.

Unable to keep up with Williams but comfortably clear of the pack behind until Raikkonen charged him down, Sergio Perez kept it tidy for a second consecutive top six finish in sixth in the Force India.

Despite complaints about a potential exhaust problem, Nico Hulkenberg successfully rebuffed the efforts of a feisty Marcus Ericsson first and then Daniel Ricciardo, the Australian coming through to eighth place late on, leaving Ericsson to nonetheless celebrate his third straight top ten finish for Sauber.

Benefitting from Rosberg's late exit, Daniil Kvyat snatched the final point in tenth position, ahead of fellow penalised drivers Carlos Sainz and Max Verstappen. Meanwhile, the scale of McLaren-Honda's problems were evident by Jenson Button getting a great start to run ninth briefly, only to be quickly swallowed up by the pack. He finished 14th.

Monza stats - Hamilton completes second career ‘grand slam’ 

Lewis Hamilton survived a post-race investigation into his starting tyre pressures to record his seventh (and Mercedes' tenth) win of the season at Monza on Sunday. It was the world champion’s third win in Italy and his 40th career triumph, moving him just one victory behind Ayrton Senna and Sebastian Vettel in the all-time list.

Hamilton’s domination in Italy was total. Not only did he set the fastest lap times in all three practice sessions and all three segments of qualifying, he also led every lap of the race and set the race’s fastest lap to claim his second career ‘grand slam’ and his first since Malaysia in 2014.

Jim Clark holds the all-time record with eight grand slams (or grand chelems as they are sometimes known), but Sebastian Vettel has the most of the current grid. The German has completed the set of pole position, fastest lap, every lap led and victory on four Grand Prix weekends in his career, most recently at Korea in 2013.

Speaking of Vettel, the four-time world champion picked up the fourth Monza podium finish of his career with second place. The German is the 37th different driver to reach the rostrum in Italy wearing the red of Ferrari (the 40th if you include those who shared drives in the 1950s).

Behind Vettel, Felipe Massa - himself a podium finisher for Ferrari at Monza - held off team mate Valtteri Bottas to secure his second (and Williams’ third) rostrum finish of the season. In total, Williams scored 27 points in Italy - their biggest single race haul of the year.

Force India also collected a season-high total of 14 points after Sergio Perez came home sixth and Nico Hulkenberg seventh. It was the team’s fourth double points finish in 12 races this season.

Elsewhere, Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson will be disappointed to have lost what would have been a career-best-equalling eighth place to Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo on the last lap, but the Swede did at least extend his points run to three consecutive races with ninth.

Daniil Kvyat kept his own points run going by coming home tenth – the fourth race in a row in which he’s scored. Along with Ricciardo, the Russian also helped extend Renault’s points streak as an engine supplier to 131 races - something that looked a tall order before the race with all four Renault-powered cars starting from the rear of the grid.

In other statistical news, somewhat incredibly both Lotuses retired before the end of the second lap for the third time this season. After early DNFs in both Spa and Monza, Pastor Maldonado has now completed just three of the last 96 racing laps. McLaren’s Fernando Alonso seems only marginally less unlucky than the Venezuelan, the Spaniard failing to reach the chequered flag for the sixth time this season. That's the most early baths he's had since his maiden season with Minardi in 2001.

And finally, on the subject of retirements, Nico Rosberg suffered his first DNF of the year in Monza. The German is now 53 points behind Silver Arrows team mate Hamilton - the biggest deficit he has faced all season.

Can Rosberg turn things around in Singapore in two weeks’ time?

2015 Formula 1 : GRAN PREMIO D'ITALIA - Race result

Pos. Driver Country Team Time Points
1 Lewis Hamilton GBR Mercedes 1:18:00.688 25
2 Sebastian Vettel GER Ferrari +25.042s 18
3 Felipe Massa BRA Williams +47.635s 15
4 Valtteri Bottas FIN Williams +47.996s 12
5 Kimi Räikkönen FIN Ferrari +68.860s 10
6 Sergio Perez MEX Force India +72.783s 8
7 Nico Hulkenberg GER Force India +1 lap 6
8 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Red Bull Racing +1 lap 4
9 Marcus Ericsson SWE Sauber +1 lap 2
10 Daniil Kvyat RUS Red Bull Racing +1 lap 1
11 Carlos Sainz ESP Toro Rosso +1 lap 0
12 Max Verstappen NED Toro Rosso +1 lap 0
13 Felipe Nasr BRA Sauber +1 lap 0
14 Jenson Button GBR McLaren +1 lap 0
15 Will Stevens GBR Marussia +2 laps 0
16 Roberto Merhi ESP Marussia +2 laps 0
17 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes DNF 0
18 Fernando Alonso ESP McLaren DNF 0
NC Romain Grosjean FRA Lotus DNF 0
NC Pastor Maldonado VEN Lotus DNF 0

Fastest Lap - Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1m 26.672s (lap 48)

2015 Drivers Championship Standings

Pos. Drivers Country. Team Points
1 Lewis Hamilton GBR Mercedes 252
2 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes 199
3 Sebastian Vettel GER Ferrari 178
4 Felipe Massa BRA Williams 97
5 Kimi Räikkönen FIN Ferrari 92
6 Valtteri Bottas FIN Williams 91
7 Daniil Kvyat RUS Red Bull Racing 58
8 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Red Bull Racing 55
9 Romain Grosjean FRA Lotus 38
10 Sergio Perez MEX Force India 33
11 Nico Hulkenberg GER Force India 30
12 Max Verstappen NED Toro Rosso 26
13 Felipe Nasr BRA Sauber 16
14 Pastor Maldonado VEN Lotus 12
15 Fernando Alonso ESP McLaren 11
16 Carlos Sainz ESP Toro Rosso 9
17 Marcus Ericsson SWE Sauber 9
18 Jenson Button GBR McLaren 6
19 Roberto Merhi ESP Marussia 0
20 Will Stevens GBR Marussia 0

2015 Teams Championship Standings

1 Mercedes 451
2 Ferrari 270
3 Williams 188
4 Red Bull Racing 113
5 Force India 63
6 Lotus 50
7 Toro Rosso 35
8 Sauber 25
9 McLaren 17
10 Marussia 0

Images : 2015 F1 - Italian Grand Prix




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