Formula 1 | Italy, EL3: Verstappen takes place ahead of qualifying at Monza

Italy, EL3: Verstappen places (...)

Free Practice 3 of the Italian Grand Prix took place in Monza, and the day started with a big surprise: Nyck de Vries will drive for Williams F1 for the rest of the weekend, Alex Albon having suffered a appendicitis.

We learned during the session that Kevin Magnussen would officially be sent back to the back of the grid for engine parts changes, while Esteban Ocon received a five-place penalty for a simple internal combustion engine change, like Mick Schumacher.

Several drivers will also be penalized this weekend, and Mercedes F1 explained, via its director of track engineering Andrew Shovlin, why Lewis Hamilton would start from the back of the grid.

The engine damaged during the contact with Fernando Alonso in Belgium not being available, the Briton received a complete one, as Shovlin specifies: « On this power unit we lost the water pressure and he cut it off, as you may have heard during the race. The engine is still at HPP and undergoing detailed checks there. »

« We’ve had other issues with other elements in the pool that didn’t put them out of service, but lessened our desire to use them. Obviously we’re ready to do anything to avoid a retirement because reliability is the key. one of our strengths. »

A studious session on the very fast Monza circuit

Bottas set the first fastest lap of the session, but it was Sergio Pérez who set the first serious benchmark in 1’23″449, before improving to 1’22″148 on medium tyres. The other pilots did not immediately manage to approach within two seconds of the Mexican.

Max Verstappen then took the lead in the session in 1’21″872, while Charles Leclerc placed himself five tenths from his reference. An incident almost took place between Carlos Sainz and Valtteri Bottas, while George Russell blocked Verstappen.

Leclerc managed to come back to 0.072 from Verstappen, and then we saw Carlos Sainz position himself in fourth place. Fernando Alonso took provisional fifth place, just ahead of Pierre Gasly and Lewis Hamilton.

Nyck de Vries then took to the track for the first time. In the Williams adorned with the number 45, the Dutchman made a first lap before making a small exit from the track. He then completed a cross-country program on medium tyres.

Other drivers did the same thing in the middle of the session, before reviving in the last quarter of an hour on soft rubber. Sainz took the opportunity to take second place 0.025 behind Verstappen.

Nicholas Latifi climbed back into the top 10, claiming the absolute best first sector of the weekend. Verstappen then largely beat the clock on soft tires, with a 1’21 « 252. Leclerc also improved, three tenths behind the Dutchman.

Mick Schumacher took to the track late after suffering mechanical problems on his Haas VF-22, which his mechanics had to work on for most of these PR3s. On soft tyres, De Vries then climbed back to within a tenth of Latifi, while Alonso regained his fifth place.

Leclerc noted the problem with his F1-75 on these fast laps: « We have to do something for turn 6, it’s ok in the others but the car does not turn in turn 6 », said the Monegasque. With penalties from Verstappen, Pérez and Sainz, he obviously acts as the favorite for pole position.

Verstappen therefore finished in the lead ahead of Leclerc, Pérez, Sainz and Alonso. Norris is sixth ahead of Russell, Tsunoda, Ocon and Hamilton. Gasly is 12th and ahead of the Williams who finished in group shooting.

pos. Pilot Car Time Towers
01 Max Verstappen Red Bull RBPT RB18 1:21.252 19
02 Charles Leclerc Ferrari F1-75 1:21.599 15
03 Sergio Perez Red Bull RBPT RB18 1:21.848 26
04 carlos sainz Ferrari F1-75 1:21.897 17
05 Fernando Alonso Alpine Renault A522 1:22.306 17
06 Lando Norris McLaren Mercedes MCL36 1:22.319 19
07 george russell Mercedes W13 1:22.357 24
08 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri RBPT AT03 1:22.430 27
09 Esteban Ocon Alpine Renault A522 1:22.506 17
10 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes W13 1:22.567 22
11 Guanyu-Zhou Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42 1:22.657 14
12 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri RBPT AT03 1:22.755 21
13 Nicholas Latifi Williams Mercedes FW44 1:22.776 19
14 Nyck De Vries Williams Mercedes FW44 1:22.869 21
15 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren Mercedes MCL36 1:22.871 19
16 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Ferrari C42 1:22.950 26
17 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin Mercedes AMR22 1:23.104 20
18 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari VF-22 1:23.203 17
19 Mick Schumacher Haas Ferrari VF-22 1:23.392 8
20 Lance Stroll Aston Martin Mercedes AMR22 1:23.739 16

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