Daniel Ricciardo secured McLaren's first Formula 1 victory in nine years at Monza. With Lando Norris in second place, the traditional British team celebrated a double victory. Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen fell out after a spectacular collision.
The sprint on Saturday could not tear the fans in the Royal Park of Monza from their seats. But the 53 race laps on Sunday (September 12) offered excitement and spectacle from the first to the last second. In the end, with Daniel Ricciardo, a driver climbed to the top step of the podium, who last finished first in Monaco in 2018.
The Australian laid the foundation for success right from the start. On the approximately 450 meters to the first corner, McLaren polesitter Max Verstappen accelerated out. In the chicane, Ricciardo prevailed uncompromisingly against his former Red Bull colleague, who also wasn't able to take all the risks in order not to jeopardize his chances for the title.
In row two, the car that was placed worse also won the traffic light sprint. Lewis Hamilton prevailed against Lando Norris and immediately went in search of Verstappen. In the second chicane, the world champion dared to attack from the outside, but his Dutch opponent fought back hard. Hamilton had to go off the track, got out of step briefly and even had to let Norris pass again.
Crash between Verstappen and Hamilton
The leading quartet then did the first 22 laps in this order until the McLaren strategists made the first move and called Ricciardo to the pits. Red Bull let Verstappen out one lap longer and tried to take the lead with the overcut. But when I stopped, it got stuck in the front right. Verstappen lost more than eight seconds.
At the same time, Hamilton pushed past Norris on the track, which prompted McLaren to bring in the second car as well. Mercedes reacted one lap later, but they lost a second and a half when changing tires. At the pit exit, things suddenly became very tight between the two championship rivals. Verstappen sped up from behind and attacked Hamilton on the outside.
When turning into the second part of the chicane, there was contact. Both cars got stuck. The Red Bull climbed over the front end of the Mercedes. Only thanks to the halo bar Hamilton was not hit in the head. The crash duo slid into the gravel and got stuck. This ended the race for the two World Championship competitors. After an investigation into the accident, the stewards decided that Verstappen, as the main culprit, would have to start three places further down the next race.
Safety car flushes Leclerc forward
In order to recover the stranded cars, the safety car had to go onto the track. This gave the pilots who were not yet in the pits the opportunity to make a time-saving stop.Ricciardo was just able to defend his lead. Behind him, however, was Charles Leclerc with his Ferrari in front of Norris. But already at the restart, the Brit restored the old order. Before the second chicane, Norris prevailed against Leclerc with a courageous maneuver and made the McLaren one-two lead perfect.
Leclerc immediately had to look in the rear-view mirror again. Sergio Perez in the second Red Bull also launched an attack in the Roggia chicane. The Mexican pushed past, but shortened the curve in the process. Because Perez didn't return the position, it imposed a subsequent 5-second penalty.
After Perez, Bottas also passed Leclerc. Due to the five-second penalty for Perez, the Finn subsequently took third place on the podium. Perez was even demoted to fifth, behind Perez. Behind them, in a crazy race, there were also championship points for Carlos Sainz, Lance Stroll, Fernando Alonso, George Russell and Esteban Ocon.
Unfortunately, Sebastian Vettel finished 12th empty-handed. Mick Schumacher didn't take anything countable from Monza either. In the meantime, the Haas driver was also forced into a spin by teammate Nikita Mazepin, which earned the Russian a five-second penalty. But that didn't matter because Mazepin rolled out with a defect shortly before the end.
Fastest lap of the race for Ricciardo
In the end, Ricciardo and Norris drove the one-two comfortably home and never gave their pursuers a chance to attack. It was McLaren's first victory since the 2012 Brazilian GP. "It was about time," said Ricciardo, who even got the bonus point for the fastest lap in the end.
"After winning the start, there was no guarantee that I could defend my lead to the finish. We didn't have the mega speed, but it was enough. I already had the feeling on Friday that something good was happening here. Yes a win would be great for McLaren. Celebrating the double now is just sick."
Lando Norris was also happy with Ricciardo. The Brit had refrained from attacking so as not to jeopardize the team's success. "It was really a great weekend. We worked hard for this success for a long time. I'm happy for the team and for Daniel. Of course you always want to fight for victory yourself. But if we had fought, it might have ended like this by the others."
Valtteri Bottas was also satisfied with the result: "It's a pity for Lewis, of course, but everything went perfectly for me. I already said before that it's enough for a podium today." The double failure did not change anything at the top of the World Cup. Verstappen and Hamilton travel to the Russian GP in Sochi in two weeks, separated by three points.