Italian GP: McLaren secure 1-2 as Hamilton and Verstappen clash at Monza

After 53 laps of bustling and battling it was a McLaren 1-2 as Daniel Ricciardo took the victory in Monza, his first since Monaco 2018.

Following an impressive sprint qualifying, at lights out, Ricciardo managed to edge ahead of Max Verstappen, setting himself up for a very promising Italian Grand Prix.

Verstappen held second place, fighting off the McLaren of Lando Norris until a race ending incident with Lewis Hamilton on Lap 26.

Hamilton exited the pit lane wheel to wheel with Verstappen. The competitiveness of the two drivers resulted in space being sparse for both, forcing Verstappen’s rear end to veer up onto the kerb and land on top of the Mercedes.

A yellow flag and safety car marked the end of the two championship rivals’ Italian Grand Prix.

Verstappen and Hamilton were not alone with receiving a premature ending. Pierre Gasly was forced to retire his car after just five laps due to problems with his front suspension.

Along with his teammate, Yuki Tsunoda, was unable to start the race, this meant no AlphaTauri cars saw the chequered flag.

Nikita Mazepin also gained a DNF as he was forced to retire his Haas halfway through the Grand Prix.

Despite one car being out, It was not all misery for Mercedes. Valtteri Bottas proved his power by gaining 16 places from starting 19th on the grid to securing third on the podium.

Bottas faced a long battle with Sergio Perez to gain the final spot on the podium. However, the Mexican received a five-second time penalty for an unsafe entrance onto the track which pushed him down into fifth place.

Perez’ misfortune not only benefited Bottas, but also opened up a space for Charles Leclerc who consequently finished fourth behind the Mercedes of Bottas.

Behind Perez was Carlos Sainz in sixth, placing both Ferrari’s in the points.

Lance Stroll finished in seventh closely followed by the Alpine of Fernando Alonso in eighth.

Despite being out qualified by his teammate for the first time in 32 attempts, George Russell landed another points finish in ninth place.

Behind the Briton was the Alpine of Esteban Ocon who rounded off the top-10.

The other Williams of Nichola Latifi fell just out of the points as he finished in 11th, followed by the Aston Martin of Sebastian Vettel in 12th.

After a collision exiting the chicane on lap one ,leaving him without a front wing, Antonio Giovinazzi finished in 13th ahead of his temporary teammate Robert Kubica in 14th.

Mick Schumacher concluded the order of 15 drivers after a thrilling Monza affair.