Hamilton wins Italian Grand Prix
Lewis Hamilton won Formula 1 Italian Grand Prix in Monza and has strengthened his lead in the championship to 53 points, seven races before the end of the season. Mercedes driver’s victory was never in doubt as he was on the top from start to finish, beating Sebastian Vettel in Ferrari and Felipe Massa in Williams who has won a place on the podium after Nico Rosberg retired from the race.
It was a dramatic start of the race as Kimi Raikkonen stalled and dropped to last position, while both Williams cars and Sergio Perez overtook Nico Rosberg. Hamilton retained first place in front of Vettel and easily started to increase advantage. In a meantime, both Lotus cars were forced to retire in the first lap, probably because of small damages on their cars made during confusion after the start at turn 1.
Reigning champion kept Vettel nine seconds behind without too much problems, while Massa was 10 seconds behind the Ferrari driver. Bottas and Raikonen had an interesting battle for fourth, but Williams driver defended well and probably forced Mercedes driver to change his strategy and go to for a pit-stop earlier than planned.
After completing his pit-stop, Hamilton was clear on the top, with an advantage of 18.5s ahead of Vettel, but Rosberg moved up to third and looked desperate to attack Ferrari as he was just five seconds behind with 23 laps to go, but Massa and Bottas weren’t too far from Rosberg so they also could intervene in the battle for podium.
With 13 laps to go, it was obvious that only some huge mistakes or technical failures could affect current standings, especially in top five. Almost the same was the battle for places 6-10 where gaps between Perez, Raikkonen, Hulkenberg, Ericsson and Ricciardo were not too big, but quite hard to beat.
Nico Rosberg was forced to retire with two laps to go as fire caught his Mercedes. Williams drivers unexpectedly got the chance to fight for the podium and after an interesting battle, Massa managed to finish in front of Bottas. Lewis Hamilton easily won his seventh race this season, while Vettel finished second and shortened the gap between himself and Rosberg in championship classification.
Kimi Raikkonen finished fifth, while the remaining points were scored by Sergio Perez, Nico Hulkenberg, Daniel Ricciardo, Marcus Ericsson and Daniil Kvyat.