Italian GP

Italian GP power rankings

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Despite getting the Tifosi's hopes up, a Kimi Raikkonen win just wasn't on the cards. Recovering from last on the opening lap, Vettel managed to drag himself back up to P4 to keep his title hopes alive, limiting Hamilton's lead to 30 points. 

Here's our power rankings from the Italian Grand Prix:

Moving on up

Kimi Raikkonen genuinely put himself into the contention for a win, which would have been his first victory in more than five years, despite taking a rousing pole wore out his tyres in the middle of the race, especially when following the slower Valtteri Bottas. Scrapping for the lead in the early laps, and at times surrounded by the Silver arrows, Kimi stood tall and delivered an admirable P2 for his 100th podium finish.

Lewis Hamilton claims an unlikely win, and it was anything but comfortable for the championship leader. From trading blows with Vettel on the opening lap, to challenging the faster Ferrari after the safety car, to managing his tyres while his teammate backed his main challenger up, to a gutsy move around the outside of Turn 1, Hamilton was amongst everything. I could have done with fewer references to the "snake pit" and "hateful and negative" crowd, especially after his recent comments about "tricks" on the Ferrari and "interesting tactics", but it'll hold up as an important moment if Hamilton claims the championship this season.

Sergey Sirotkin held onto the tail of fellow Williams driver Lance Stroll to deliver a double-points finish for the team after the disqualification of Romain Grosjean's Haas. With it, the Russian opens his account, making this the season the first time ever that every driver that has claimed points.

Backsliding

Max Verstappen copped a penalty for a rough defensive move on Valtteri Bottas, but his behaviour afterwards which cost him P4 in the race was just mind-boggling. If he'd let the faster Bottas through, he should have been able to stay more than 5-seconds ahead of the recovering Sebastian Vettel, instead throwing his toys from the cot and fell a further place backwards. 

Haas spaced completely on a new enforced floor regulation that was introduced this race, and as a result of an inquiry led by Renault, Romain Grosjean's car was ruled illegal and his points finish was nullified. The midfield is way to close this year for these kinds of mistakes, if not for this mistake they would have been equal with Renault on points (and ahead on better finishes). 

Nico Hulkenberg copped an engine penalty ahead of the race, but points should have been up for grabs here. Instead, his teammate Sainz was left to claim the spoils for the team. 

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Nico Rosberg victorious in Italy as Hamilton fails to launch

Despite taking pole, Lewis Hamilton had a shocking start to the Italian Grand Prix, handing Nico Rosberg (and several opponents) track position into the first corner. Rosberg was untroubled in his run to the flag, and Hamilton easily dispensed with Daniel Ricciardo and Valtteri Bottas until strategy got him past the Ferraris and into P2.

Heading to Singapore after the "European Season", Rosberg has closed the gap to just 2 points arresting momentum from Hamilton at the stage of the season that has traditionally been his strongest. 

In a race devoid of highlights Daniel Ricciardo pulled off the overtake of the season, wrestling the adjective "Verstappen-esque" back from his teammate to take Bottas into turn 1 under breaking. 

The passionate Italian crowd voiced their displeasure at seeing the Mercedes drivers on top of the podium, but the sight of Vettel on the third step gave them someone to cheer about. Red Bull still seem to have an advantage over Ferrari, which will be tested heading into the high-downforce tracks.

Monza "saved" after Italian law changed to secure funding

The resourceful folks at Motorsport.com are quoting a report in Gazzetta della Sport that Italian laws have changed that will secure additional funding to secure the future of the Italian GP at Monza, with the final agreement set to be signed in January.

Previously, only the Automobile Club of Milan, headed by former Ferrari F1 driver Ivan Capelli, was allowed to fund the race, using the revenue generated from ticket sales.
However, the law changes will now see ACI add approximately 12.5 million dollars to ACM's 6.5 million investment.

It's still a worrying sign that ticket sales alone can't get the race across the line, but if we are going to continue to pay Ferrari tens of millions of dollars just for showing up in F1, it's vital that we also keep Monza on the calendar.

Source: Motorsport.com