Italian Grand Prix: Five Talking Points
Winner AlphaTauri's French driver Pierre Gasly celebrates on the podium after the Italian Formula One Grand Prix at the Autodromo Nazionale circuit in Monza on September 6, 2020. (Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA / POOL / AFP) (Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

With the first race of the Italian double-header wrapped up, there was plenty to get the fans talking in what was arguably the most competitive race of the season thus far.

Here is how the race unfolded as three fresh faces made their way onto the podium.

End of an era

This weekend of racing was the most significant of the season with major changes underway at Williams.

Sir Frank and Claire Williams announced that they would be stepping away from their team ahead of selling to private investment team Dorilton Capital. 

Sir Frank Williams founded the team in 1977 and went on to lead them to nine Constructors' Championships and seven Drivers' titles.

This truly is the end of an era and as the curtain closes on the Williams family's 43 year stint in charge of the sport's third most successful team, it represents a sad day for Formula 1.

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Much needed competition 

Prior to this week's Italian Grand Prix Mercedes had won all but one race this season and with it becoming a formality that they will dominate week in week out, you would be forgiven for predicting another win for Lewis Hamilton and Co. 

Due to the Mercedes dominance that has been evident this season, the sport was gradually becoming boring and predictable. However, with three fresh faces on the podium at Monza, this weekend provided great viewing and the much needed competition F1 needed.

Pierre Gasly secured his first Grand Prix win, finishing just 0.415 seconds ahead of McLaren's Carlos Sainz in second with Lance Stroll a close third and Hamilton finishing strong in seventh despite a 10 second penalty.

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Glory for Gasly

This will be a weekend to remember for Alpha Tauri Driver Gasly having recorded the first win of his F1 career.

The 24-year old Frenchman is a far cry from the Driver he was when axed from Red Bull and with his consistently impressive performances he continues to make his former team regret their perhaps premature decision to replace him with Alex Albon who continued to disappoint with a shocking 15th place.

As the wheels touched ground at Monza, Gasly really had nothing to lose having already been one of the most impressive Drivers on the grid this season. However, racing at his team's home track, he showed great guts and determination to take advantage of championship leader Hamilton's time penalty and grab the win from under the nose of Sainz. 

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Magnificent McLaren

Coming off the back of a fantastic 2019 season, many questioned whether or not McLaren could follow up and carry that momentum into the new campaign. 

Other than Lando Norris' first career podium in the Austrian Grand Prix, McLaren had been struggling this season and really needed a positive result at Monza.

Needing to bounce back amongst the points this week, McLaren exceeded expectations with Sainz and Norris finishing second and fourth respectively to gain a total of 30 points for their team as they continue to stake a claim for third place in the Constructors' Championship.

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Ferrari woes continue 

Last week's Belgian Grand Prix seemed to be rock bottom for Ferrari, but somehow, the team's issues continued as they went further downhill at their home track.

It looked bad enough when Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc finished in 13th and 14th place at Spa-Francorchamps, however, with the pair failing to finish the Italian Grand Prix, Ferrari need solutions sooner rather than later.

Leclerc suffered an awful crash that could have resulted in a horrific outcome whilst Vettel was forced to retire from the race with brake issues. Thankfully, the former was unharmed, but when it looked as though it could not get much worse for Ferrari, they are now even struggling with fundamentals such as brakes. 

It could be time for the Italian team to write off this season and work on improving the car between now and next season.

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