I n Monza brought Sebastian Vettel the seventh place on the podium in this Season home. It was a very special one for the four-time world champion. Because for the first time he was able to celebrate on the podium in Monza in red work clothes. With a view of the enthusiastic Tifosi on the home stretch. A happy pilot summed up after 53 laps. 'It was the best second place I've ever had.'
Vettel has only a short hope of victory
In the press conference, the Ferrari driver underlined the importance of Monza in the formula 1 calendar. 'The emotions on the podium are unbelievable. If, for some damn financial reasons, this race were to be dropped from the calendar, it would be like tearing our hearts out.'
The GP started with a place for Vettel. From third position, he passed team-mate Kimi Räikkönen. The Iceman stopped for two to three seconds due to clutch problems and fell back to last place.
When braking for the first chicane, Vettel sat down next to Pole man Lewis Hamilton. 'I braked a little later than him. But I was on the outside and had to realize that I couldn't get him. Then I concentrated on the corner exit. Lewis had a fabulous exit from turn two, so I couldn't attack. '
The hope of being able to attack the Mercedes driver later on, vanished after just a few laps. 'After the first few laps, our times were pretty similar. He was only one or two tenths faster. So I thought we might have a chance to close the gap. But then he got second breath.'
Ferrari driver does not want an inherited triumph
After the eighth lap, the car with starting number 5 was already 5.4 Seconds behind the leader. Until the first tire change on the 25th lap, the gap got bigger and bigger. At the rear, Vettel himself had several seconds of air on Felipe Massa.
'Felipe, I and the other cars struggled with the tires. But Lewis just drove on and on fast. I was informed on the radio that my times are increasing. He was just as quick on lap 22 as he was on lap fourth. That was pretty impressive. ' Which brought Vettel to the clear conclusion: 'You were faster than us and had less tire wear.'
After the first pit stop, Vettel's pursuer changed. Instead of Massa, Nico Rosberg was behind him. And the Mercedes driver caught up tenth by tenth. Until shortly before the end the engine started. 'I think I could have kept Nico behind me like that,' judged Vettel.
Because the starting pressure in the rear left tire on Hamilton's car was 19.2 instead of the mandatory 19.5 PSI, the victory wobbled of the British for two and a half hours. But immediately after the race, Vettel made it clear that he doesn't believe in an inherited triumph. 'With the utmost respect I have to say that he did a great job today and we have to accept that.'