Grand Prix 2019 Italian Grand Prix Practice, Qualifying & Race Discussion

What? The Italian GP thread is up and the Belgian race hasn't even taken place? Well, spoiler alert, Lewis took pole in Spa and won the race at a canter, Bottas was second and Max was third.

So, on to the temple of speed. A fixture of the F1 calendar since the first World Championship season (with the exception of a moment of silliness in 1980 when they went to Imola) Monza has given us the two fastest Grand Prix in Championship history.

1971, the days when the Monza low drag spec. was to take all the wings off and just drive round slip streaming the other cars until you got to the end. No chicanes, no compulsory tyre stops, no DRS, just balls out from start to finish. Chris Amon put his Matra on pole with a lap at over 156mph. Amon has the reputation of being a very unlucky driver and this race wasn't to be any different as he only finished 6th. The final laps are stunning to watch as the cars buzz around taking and overtaking one another again and again. Peter Gethin won the race in the BRM at an average speed of a smidge under 151mph and the first 5 cars crossed the line within 0.6 seconds of one another.

A few other oddities about 1971. Emerson Fittipaldi drove a four wheel drive, gas turbine engined Lotus 56B but it wasn't a Lotus it was entered by World Wide Racing. It was the first race for motor cycling World Champion Mike Hailwood. He led at various points, eventually finishing 4th. An English driver wouldn't win again until James Hunt stood on the top step in Holland in 1975.

2003, the time Michael Schumacher stood (almost) without equal in F1. Although he was being pushed hard by Juan Pablo Montoya in the 2003 season and before the race in Monza hadn't won a race since Canada. There were some games before the race as those using Michelin tyres had to cope with a small rule change on tyre widths which allowed the Bridgestone runners to get back on terms. Schumacher and Montoya pushed each hard through the race but Michael was just too quick. Even with two pit stops for tyres Schumacher averaged 153.8 mph for the race. This at a circuit with three chicanes to "slow the cars down".

What chance a new race record in 2019? The cars are fast enough, Kimi's pole lap in 2018 was 163.8 mph :o . Can we avoid a safety car?

Enjoy one of the shortest races of the season (about 1 1/4 hours) at the most historic circuit on the calendar.
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Alas I shall not be there this year; it is a race where there is a real atmosphere unlike some where they need cardboard cut-out spectators.
I used to hate Monza, then I began to really appreciate the speed of the cars without being too concerned at the lack of racing. It's now one of my favourites.
Nice thread, well done.
Can Ferrari get a win in their home race? They have Spa under their belt, maybe the momentum will be with them and they will, but if they do will it be Charles Leclerc or Sebastian Vettel who takes it?
I expect a very happy outcome for Ferrari again this weekend, assuming they keep the finger of the self-destruct button. Mercedes had a fair speed deficit at Spa and it will only be exaggerated further this weekend if they can't reduce the drag on their car. I am of course ready to eat my words!
Mercedes looked to be running quite a lot of downforce at Spa; if so they can take more off than Ferrari. Only time will tell whether or not they can take enough off.
I think this is Leclerc to lose he looked brilliant in spa, but Hamilton is overachiveing in that the Mercedes & shouldnt have won last yr but drove a great race
I scrolled through FP1. Vettel looked a little lost. Exited the track a couple of times. Perez and Raikkonen crashed and Gasly did a big spin. It was a damp track, so real times didn't start getting set until towards the end. Some cars (like Mercedes) did even bother to run until the end of the session after the track had dried. In the end, only ten cars bothered to run on slick tires.
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