Hamilton takes pole as Ferrari close in

By on
F1 Grand Prix, GP Italy, Autodromo Nazionale di Monzait

Lewis Hamilton continued to dominate the Italian Grand Prix weekend by setting the fastest time in each single part of qualifying. Hamilton faces a close challenge by Raikkonen and Vettel who qualified second and third, ahead of his Mercedes team mate Nico Rosberg.

As the pit light went green, Will Stevens was the first on track, soon followed his team mate at Manor, Roberto Merhi. Both ventured out on softs, whereas most others opted for the mediums for their first runs. McLaren and Toro Rosso were the only other teams that chose to send their cars out on softs immediately on the first runs.

It didn't take long however for Mercedes to end up on top of the timesheet, with Hamilton leading Rosberg by 4 tenths, and another 3 tenths ahead of Bottas and Vettel.

3 minutes from the end of the session, Ricciardo went out for the first time, having encountered an engine problem in final practice. The Australian eventually moved up into 14th, just in time before the session was effectively coming to an end due to Verstappen losing the engine cover of his Toro Rosso. The Italian team were pushing to get the Dutchman out for a single lap at the end of the session, but it appears like they rushed things a bit.

With debris on track, this meant the end of Q1, eliminating Button, Alonso, Stevens, Merhi and of course Verstappen who failed to set a time.

On Q2, Hamilton again proved fastest, completing just a single flying lap on a new set of softs. Rosberg and all others had another go, bot none of them managed to beat the World Champion's initial lap. Vettel though ended at 2 tenths, with Raikkonen at 0.374s and Rosberg at 0.481s.

In the drop zone, Nico Hulkenberg narrowly managed to get through in 10th, eliminating Maldonado, Nasr, Sainz, Kvyat and Ricciardo. The last three Renault-powered runners didn't put in much effort, with all of them facing penalties that will put them at the back of the grid.

In Q3, Hulkenberg is the first to set a time, followed by Rosberg. Their times were quickly improved though, with first Massa, then Vettel and then Hamilton going faster. Raikkonen slotted into 3rd, relegating Rosberg to 5th after the first attempts.

When drivers returned to the pits, Hulkenberg encountered an issue and came to a halt at the beginning of the pitlane, mentioning he lost all power. The team mechanics ran to him and managed to get the car back into the box to investigate the issue.

For the second string of laps, Grosjean is first on track followed by Vettel whereas Nico Rosberg chose to come out last, hoping to have the last word.

It turned out he did, but his lap was not enough to challenge for pole position. Instead, Rosberg ended up in 4th, behind Hamilton and both Ferrari's. Still, not a bad effort to improve, as Raikkonen was the only other driver who managed to gain positions compared to his first attempt in Q3.

Results

Pos.No.DriverTeamTimeLaps
144Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG1:23.39715
27Kimi RäikkönenFerrari1:23.63117
35Sebastian VettelFerrari1:23.68520
46Nico RosbergMercedes AMG1:23.70319
519Felipe MassaWilliams1:23.94019
677Valtteri BottasWilliams1:24.12717
711Sergio PerezForce India1:24.62619
88Romain GrosjeanLotus F11:25.05419
927Nico HulkenbergForce India1:25.31718
109Marcus EricssonSauber1:26.21420
1113Pastor MaldonadoLotus F11:24.52516
1212Felipe NasrSauber1:24.89815
1355Carlos SainzToro Rosso1:25.61810
1426Daniil KvyatRed Bull Racing1:25.79611
153Daniel RicciardoRed Bull Racing-3
1622Jenson ButtonMclaren1:26.0587
1714Fernando AlonsoMclaren1:26.1547
1828Will StevensMarussia1:27.7319
1998Roberto MerhiMarussia1:27.9129
2033Max VerstappenToro Rosso-1