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Ferrari celebrates front row: what does Vettel want to talk about?

Ferrari celebrates first row
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K imi Räikkönen played the iceman. The 38-year-old Finn celebrated his 18th pole position in Monza almost stoically in Monza, his first since the Monaco GP in 2017. “If you want a pole position in a Ferrari, then definitely in Monza.” Raikkonen obviously knows what they are The hour has struck. The die for Ferrari for 2019 has been cast against him. The paddock radio reports: Ferrari will drive next year with Charles Leclerc at the side of Sebastian Vettel. The best time in training must have been all the more satisfying for the fastest man in Monza.

Ferrari is sticking to its version. A decision about the drivers will be made later. But the indiscretions in the circus and the body language of those involved say something different. Ferrari could hardly reveal its cards in Monza. The fans would have grilled the Scuderia if their secret darling had been terminated after a pole position. In Monza, Ferrari once again demonstrated loyalty to the Nibelung to the driver who, after Michael Schumacher, drove the second most races for the Scuderia. The team stuck to its internal procedures, although Sebastian Vettel counts every world championship point that he can make up on Lewis Hamilton. But what does Ferrari do when Raikkonen wins the Italian GP after a break of 107 races in Monza? Then it becomes more and more difficult to explain a breakup.

Who got how much slipstream?

The qualification was a battle at the highest level. The first lap in Q3 went to Lewis Hamilton. The Mercedes driver set a time of 1.19.390 minutes, surprising friends and foes alike. The Ferraris were ahead of the rest of the season. The World Cup candidates watched each other for the last shot. Mercedes were the first to send their drivers onto the track, knowing full well that this would give both Ferraris slipstream. “We didn't want to wait too long. If you hang at the end of the queue and there is a yellow flag, you've gambled away, ”explained team boss Toto Wolff.

At Mercedes, the tasks were clearly assigned. Valtteri Bottas had to pull his team captain Hamilton. Ferrari, to everyone's surprise, sent Sebastian Vettel onto the track ahead of Kimi Räikkönen. “The order changes every weekend. This time Kimi was second, ”explained Vettel. For the World Cup runner-up it would have been better the other way round.

The slipstream in Monza ideally brings threeTenths or 5 km /h on the straight. But you lose some time because of the turbulence in the corners. The bottom line is that the time saved on the straights is higher. “We all had slipstream. Me from Bottas, Vettel from me, Kimi from Vettel. ', Said Hamilton. Objection: Vettel had more distance to Hamilton than Hamilton to Bottas or Raikkonen to Vettel. Only Bottas, clearly the slowest of the quartet, was pinched.

The decision was made within nine seconds

The four drivers from Mercedes and Ferrari flew over the finish line with a gap of nine seconds. The distances also provide information about the quality of the slipstream. Hamilton was three seconds behind Bottas, Vettel four seconds behind Hamilton, Raikkonen just two seconds behind his team-mate. Let's have a look at the speed measurements on the finish line and at the end of the home straight:

Hamilton was able to improve the time set by almost a tenth. But just four seconds later, the Englishman lost his provisional pole position. Vettel took the best starting place from the audience by 14 thousandths of a second. 'I was not satisfied with my lap, I missed both chicanes, especially in the second,' said Vettel sullenly. The Roggia chicane was his problem area on the track on Friday.

What does Vettel want to talk about?

Vettel's jubilation on the radio got a sudden damper when his race engineer Riccardo Adami gave him the opportunity announced that there was someone faster than him. Vettel had no chance against Raikkonen. The Finn's lead was surprisingly clear at 0.161 seconds. Which not only had to do with the slipstream. 'Kimi had a great lap,' the team mate applauded.

A radio message from Vettel caused confusion: 'We have to talk later.' The German did not want to talk about what exactly, despite repeated questions. So it can't have been a triviality. Here we can only speculate. Would Vettel have wanted to reverse the order in Q3 so that he gets the better slipstream? Did he feel he was being sent on the lap too far behind Hamilton? Or was there something wrong with the car? We may never know.


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