As Monza is by far the lowest downforce circuit on the racing calendar, teams usually develop new front and rear wings to achieve higher top speeds. As did McLaren, bringing a new front wing with significantly less frontal surface and without an F-duct, a first for McLaren this year.
After both drivers tested a variety of setups, including a change of rear wings, only Lewis Hamilton decided to use it beyond Friday practices. Jenson Button meanwhile opted for the higher downforce setup with a rear wing similar to the one used at Turkey.
The strategy differences are interesting, as Hamilton is among the top three at the speed traps, while Button is only quicker than both HRT cars. The latter though is second on the grid, 3 places up to teammate Hamilton. And while top speeds may be a concern for last year's champion, his team is hoping that the higher downforce will make sure the option tyres last longer while others may start struggling after 10 to 15 laps.