Monza, September 6, 2015 – Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton has extended his championship lead by winning the Italian Grand Prix from pole position, using a one-stop strategy. Hamilton won his 50th grand prix with Mercedes, having gone quickest in every practice session, taken pole position and set fastest lap as well. In the end, his winning margin was 25 seconds.
Lewis Hamilton-This weekend has been just fantastic. A perfect weekend for me – I can’t remember one like it. This race is so special for every driver. When you stand up on that podium it’s so emotional. It’s a really proud moment to be up there in front of that sea of fans and to walk in the footsteps of so many great drivers who have won here. The start was pretty close, holding off Sebastian. But from there I felt in control. The balance wasn’t perfect for qualifying but it was one of the best I’ve had in the race. I can’t thank the team enough for all their hard work. Everyone at Brackley and Brixworth is doing such an incredible job. I’ve never seen anything like it, so thank you everyone.
The Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel was second on an identical strategy, with the top 10 all stopping just once. The majority of drivers started on the soft tyre and then moved onto the medium. Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo was the highest-placed driver to start on the medium tyre and run the opposite strategy, ending up eighth after starting 19th as a result of grid penalties.
Sebastian Vettel: “It’s an incredible day, it’s the best second place I ever had in Formula One. Thanks to all the tifosi for giving me those emotions today on the podium: it’s fantastic to see so many fans, feel the support we get as a team. It just makes our lives so much more worth living when you see all the fans coming underneath the podium. In terms of emotions it’s more than a victory. It’s nearly a perfect day: I’m saying nearly because I don’t know what happened to Kimi at the start. It’s a shame because otherwise I believe we could have both cars on the podium today. The speed was there, unfortunately not enough to win, but we’ve tried everything. Monza is known to be a power track and we all know how dominant Mercedes was here last year. I believe the engine guys have done a great job. There are for sure things that we need to improve: we’ll do step by step. Tyres were ok for the whole weekend.”
Felipe Massa: It’s really emotional to have been on the podium. It was a difficult but fantastic race, I didn’t have the best start but I was still able to pass cars so it was good enough. I worked hard to open the gap to Valtteri, but when I pitted early it gave him the advantage on tyres at the end of the race. It was hard to keep him behind as he really wanted it, but I just about managed it. I am delighted for myself and the team, we got a lot of valuable points. It’s special to be up on the podium at Monza again, and I really thank the team for their effort today.
Another impressive fightback from Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen, fifth at the end, after dropping to last following a slow start off the grid.
While Hamilton dominated the front of the field, there was close competition behind him, with many of the points-scoring places only settled on the final lap, as drivers battled for position.
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