F1: Mercedes back to business as poleman Hamilton revels in Monza comeback
Monza, September 7, 2014 – Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton has won in Monza, Pirelli’s home race held half an hour’s drive from the company’s HQ in Milan. Hamilton won the race with a one-stop strategy, starting on the medium tyre and then switching to the hard tyre for the rest of the race.
He is now seventh in the all-time list of grand prix winners, surpassing fellow Briton Sir Jackie Stewart. Hamilton was presented with his trophy on the podium by Pirelli brand ambassador Jean Alesi.
The winning strategy was adopted by the majority of frontrunners, with the top 10 finishers all using similar tactics. At one of the fastest races of the year, with approximately a 24-second time loss in the pit lane, most drivers were able to take advantage of the low wear and degradation of both compounds to stop only once: clearly the best way to approach the race.
The top 10 on the grid all started on the medium tyre, with Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg the highest-placed driver to start on the hard tyre, from 13th on the grid. He then completed a long 33-lap final stint on the softer tyre at the end of the race.
Another driver to start on the hard tyre was Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat, from 21st on the grid following a penalty. He completed a 30-lap opening stint on the hard tyre and was set for a points finish with the different strategy helping him gain track position, until a braking issue on the final lap.
Temperatures were slightly cooler than they had been during the weekend previously, with the race starting in 29 degrees ambient and 44 degrees of track temperature.
1st, Lewis Hamilton -Firstly it was amazing to see the straight completely filled with fans from the podium today. You make this race and thank you so much for your support! Big congratulations to the team for our performance this weekend. We said we wanted a one-two and we got it today; this result is important for everyone. It was a difficult race for me though. The launch sequence didn’t engage properly for the formation lap and then again for the start. I tried to pull away as fast as possible, basically I just floored it and hoped for the best! Fortunately I didn’t lose too many places and was able to get past Kevin, then have a good battle with Felipe. When I closed up to Nico, I didn’t want to hold back as the car felt good and I knew from experience that the only chance would be at the start of the stint when the tyres were fresh so I went for it. I’m really pleased with the win, it’s feels like I have some momentum back as we go into the final races.
2nd, Nico Rosberg – Lewis was quicker this weekend, so he deserved the win. That for sure is very disappointing for me. I had a lock up in Turn One and I decided to go straight to avoid a flat spotted tyre. That cost me the lead. But he was very quick behind me, so I had to push all the time. But I need to see the positive things from today. Second place is still good and I lost only seven points to Lewis, so this could have been much worse. It’s also a great result for the team, the first 1-2 since Austria. So I’m happy for everybody in our team and I have to thank everyone again for this great Silver Arrow. We were the strongest team at this unique circuit. The Tifosi created a great atmosphere for us on the podium; it was all red all the way down the straight. That was great to see. Now I look forward to Singapore, I like the track and I have great memories from last year.
3rd, Felipe Massa: It was a fantastic race for me so I am really happy. I had a good start and passed Magnussen at just the right time. I had to work hard to establish that position, sadly the Mercedes were still a bit quick, so we did the best we could. Monza is a special podium, and to hear the fans sing my name was amazing.