Italian GP Preview - Session timings and how to watch

Coming off the back of another successful weekend in Belgium, Mercedes will be looking to capitalize on the lack of competition on the track, in order to secure yet another win this year.

Since last time out

Since the last time we took to the track, some major news has broke from the Williams garage. It was announced that this weekends Italian GP will be the last time that current team principle Claire Williams will be fulfilling her role, as the Williams family are due to 'Step to one side' after the GP.

The Williams family have been in charge of the team since their first race in Spain, back in 1977, a tenure of 43 years and 739 GPs at the helm.

"We have been in this sport for more than four decades. We are incredibly proud of our track record and the legacy we leave behind. We have always been in it for the love of it,for the pure pleasure of going motor racing, so this is not a decision that we have taken lightly but after much reflection and as a family." - Official Statement from Williams     

The news comes a few weeks after the news of Williams accusation by American firm Dorilton Capital. The move was a bid to secure the future of the Williams brand, something that was deemed imperative for the existence of the team.

Needless to say that many eyes will be focused on Ferrari this weekend, as the team come back to Monza for the first time competitively since their win last year. 

The Scuderia are somewhat of a religion for Italian motorsport fans, for obvious reasons, however this season has been one of their worst thus far, compounding their issues at Spa last time out, with both cars finishing outside of the top 10.

Charles Leclerc managed to produce some stellar performances in the car, despite the lack of quality that he has been given, whereas Sebastian Vettel seems to have struggled throughout the season. But the result coming out of Spa spell real trouble, especially coming into another power dominated track such as Monza, home track or not, its due to be a tough weekend.

Track Profile 

The Iconic track of Monza is one of the quickest tracks on the calendar, with the pole position time last year set by Charles Leclerc being a 1.19.307. Including some of the most iconic corners in motorsport, such as Parabolica, Curva Grande and the set of Lesmos at the mid point in the lap.

Containing some of the longest straights on the calendar, Monza also caters better to power driven cars, hence the success that the 2019 Ferrari had at their home race. Typically the set ups that the teams will use will pitch the car more towards top end speed and less towards downforce, displaying similarities to the set ups used at Spa.

Last Time Out 

At the Italian GP in 2019 it was the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc who took both pole position and the race win, making it back to back wins for both him and Ferrari. However the weekend didn't get off to a great start following a shambolic qualifying session, in which no one wanted to be the first car to leave the pitlane.

The race also threw up some spectacles too, the main one being Sebastian Vettel's calamitous attempt to rejoin the track after spinning. The German managed to come back on to the track in front of Canadian Lance Stroll, who in turn went off the track too. As the Racing Point driver came to rejoin the track he would rejoin in the path of the Torro Rosso of Pierre Gasly, who was the real loser in the situation.

The real surprise package that weekend was the Renault partnership of Daniel Ricciardo and Niko Hulkenberg. The two drivers qualified fifth and sixth respectively, managing to each better their starting position by one, in what was a largely uncompetitive car.

That weekend their were three retirements, Carlos Sainz, Daniil Kvyat and Kevin Magnussen all failed to make the finish line. Kvyat and Magnussen both faced technical issues with the Dane bowing out with a hydraulics issue and the Russian retiring with a oil leak. Sainz would bow out after a pitstop in which his team failed to attach his front right wheel correctly.

How and where to watch

All sessions will be live on Sky Sports F1, with highlights being published on YouTube following the event.

Friday 4th September 

FP1- 10:00am - 11:30am 

FP2- 14:00pm- 15:30pm

Saturday 5th September 

FP3- 11:00am -12:00pm

Qualifying - 14:00pm - 15:00pm

Sunday 6th September 

Race - 14:10pm

 

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