Championship leader Lewis Hamilton delivered one of his finest driving displays when he wrecked Ferrari's homecoming party as he stormed to a record-equalling fifth Monza victory at the Italian Grand Prix.
Championship leader Lewis Hamilton delivered one of his finest driving displays when he wrecked Ferrari's homecoming party as he stormed to a record-equalling fifth Monza victory in his Mercedes at the Italian Grand Prix.
The defending world champion produced a perfectly-judged race of raw aggression and astute tire-management to finish 8.7 seconds ahead of Kimi Raikkonen, who on Saturday had claimed pole position for Ferrari with the fastest lap in Formula One history.
His 68th career victory and sixth this year increased his championship lead from 17 points to 30 ahead of Sebastian Vettel, who finished fourth in the second Ferrari after spinning on the opening lap after a clash with the Briton as he passed him at the second chicane.
Hamilton's Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas came home third ahead of Vettel with Max Verstappen taking fifth place in the classified result, after finishing third on the road, following a time penalty.
Hamilton's fifth Italian win drew him level with seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher in the record books.
Romain Grosjean finished sixth for Haas ahead of Esteban Ocon and his Force India team-mate Sergio Perez, Carlos Sainz who was ninth for Renault and Lance Stroll of Williams.
As it happened:
LEWIS HAMILTON WINS THE ITALIAN GRAND PRIX! He finishes ahead of Raikkonen and Verstappen, but Verstappen's penalty means Bottas will finish on the podium, with Vettel taking fourth.
Vettel is now within 4.8 seconds of Verstappen, meaning Vettel will take fourth. Meanwhile, Hamilton is flying at the front and has a 7.5 second lead over Raikkonen now.
Vettel, fifth, is closing on Verstappen, who only has 1.2 seconds lead over the German after that time penalty is implemented. Fourth place is within reach for Vettel, but he's running out of laps... "Now I'm losing time to Vettel but I really don't care," declares Verstappen.
Verstappen is given a 5 second penalty for squeezing Bottas off the road.
Preserving the car is now Raikkonen's concern. These are still important points for Ferrari. "We need to take care of our tires, Kimi," says Ferrari. "We need to bring the car home."
Hamilton makes a break for the lead, and he does it! He overtakes Raikkonen on the outside with eight laps to go! "Nice work," Mercedes tells Hamilton. What a moment!
A brilliant battle developing for the lead. Raikkonen, the race leader, is just about keeping Hamilton at bay but the gap is only 0.6 seconds.
Bottas finally pits and Raikkonen retakes the lead, 0.8 seconds ahead of Hamilton. Bottas rejoins in fourth place.
Bottas still out in front and outperforming his teammate Hamilton for speed. But Bottas still needs to pit of course.
Vettel also pits and returns in tenth. The podium would appear to be the best thing the German can aim for today.
Hamilton pits and comes out in third, 1.5 seconds down on the Finn. Bottas now out in front.
Raikkonen, who sets a new fastest lap, saying there’s rain on the circuit. He’s 21 seconds behind Hamilton.
Sebastian Vettel is now down in seventh. Esteban Ocon and Romain Grosjean in sixth and fifth shouldn't cause too many problems as Vettel looks to work his way through the field.
Kimi Raikkonen goes into the pits first, and comes back out in fourth place.
Another one gone for Sebastian Vettel. Second to 18th to now ninth. Fair to say it's been eventful for Vettel. His next target is Sergio Perez, so you would expect the German to get past him in a quite straightforward fashion.
Lap 13/53 Vettel up to 11th. Meanwhile, Gasly and Ricciardo are having a bit of ding-dong behind the German, their cars touching into the chicane for a second time.
Vettel up to 14th after nipping past Ricciardo just before turn 2.
Lewis Hamilton will not face any action with that opening lap collision with Sebastian Vettel. The stewards seeing it differently to how Vettel surely will.
Hamilton jumps past Kimi Raikkonen, but what a move from Raikkonen to get the lead back. Hamilton drove clean past him and defended the first and second chicane, but Raikkonen was late on the brakes and Hamilton didn't respond.
For the first time since 2011, we have a safety car at Monza. And it's brought in on the opening lap.
What a start! Vettel spins, and collides with Hamilton! The German is overtaken by Hamilton. The safety car is deployed.
mds/em (AFP, AP)