Italian
Credit: McLaren

On Sunday we were treated to one of the all-time classic race as Pierre Gasly took a hugely popular first win in a totally unpredictable Italian Grand Prix.

It was a lot easier putting this together than it was doing the post-Spa highlights, with action from lights out to the chequered flag for the first time in a while.

Here we look at the five biggest moments of a weekend that saw a new race winner crowned, the first podium without a Mercedes, Ferrari or Red Bull driver since 2012 and plenty of thrills and spills along the way.

A star is born

Gasly and AlphaTauri barely put a foot wrong on Sunday, with the Frenchman showing strong pace and brilliant calmness under pressure, while the team played a genius strategy call to get him into position to take the win.

Carlos Sainz wasn’t able to get close enough to make a proper overtaking attempt, thanks to Gasly’s consistent quick laptimes.

He was later speechless, but the outpouring of emotion from Gasly as he crossed the line just four tenths ahead of the Spaniard was quite something.

Turning point

The key moment of the Grand Prix was when Hamilton pitted illegally with the lane closed, earning him a ten-second stop-go penalty.

While this moment is what turned the race into a classic, there’s surely some better way to signal the pit lane status to the driver.

In this instance there were only signs were the few LED screens on the outside of Parabolica, and even on the reply it’s near impossible to see what they’re signing.

The giant entertainment screen above the pitlane saying ‘Box Box’ probably didn’t help either.

It could be a safety concern for the future if there’s an obstruction blocking the lane that the drivers don’t know about, and putting a big traffic light at the start, like they have at the other end, would solve the problem.

Italian GP: Gasly wins madcap race for the ages at Monza

Italian GP: Lewis Hamilton snatches pole in Monza

F1 Championship standings

 

First-lap Lando

Lando Norris launched a brilliant pass on Valtteri Bottas around the outside of the della Roggio chicane to take third.

He’d made a good start from sixth on the grid, and after having a look on the exit of turn two, he made the move done after a good run round curva grande.

It was the same move that Hamilton pulled on Vettel in 2018, but Bottas was able to keep his car pointing in the right direction afterwards, unlike the German. Not that it did him much good.

 

What a difference a year makes

In the middle of the 2019 Italian Grand Prix Charles Leclerc fought off a charging Lewis Hamilton to hold onto the lead of the Italian Grand Prix, before then rounding Parabolica to take the first home Ferrari win in nine years and become the darling of the Tifosi.

This year his last trip round turn eleven was slightly more ignominious as he lost control trying to make a correction and slammed into the barriers at high speed.

It’s amazing that he was able to walk away from the incident as the tyre wall (and halo?) did their jobs but it marked a very disappointing end to the race for Ferrari, after Vettel had retired earlier on.

 

End of an era

Monza was Williams’ last race as a family team, with Frank and Claire stepping aside now for the new owners.

To mark the occasion Claire Williams fired up the car and then guided Nicholas Latifi out of the garage, a job normally done by one of the chief mechanics.

Alongside George Russell’s emotional radio message at the end it was a poignant tribute to the family, as an era of F1 finally draws to a close.

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