Sebastian Vettel (Scuderia Toro Rosso) has won the fourteenth round of the FIA Formula One World Championship from pole position after using Bridgestone's extreme wet and wet tyres to become the youngest Grand Prix race winner in history in the ...
Sebastian Vettel (Scuderia Toro Rosso) has won the fourteenth round of the FIA Formula One World Championship from pole position after using Bridgestone's extreme wet and wet tyres to become the youngest Grand Prix race winner in history in the Italian Grand Prix at Monza.
Vettel started behind the safety car on the extreme wet tyres due to the treacherous conditions and looked dominant for the entire race to score his and Toro Rosso's first ever race win by 12.5 seconds from Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver Heikki Kovalainen. Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber F1 Team) finished third.
As the track dried, Bridgestone's wet tyre became the tyre of choice and the strategic decision of when to adopt this tyre proved crucial for a strong result. Fourth position went to ING Renault F1 Team driver Fernando Alonso whilst BMW Sauber F1 Team driver Nick Heidfeld took fifth. Felipe Massa (Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro) finished in sixth, one place ahead of championship rival Lewis Hamilton (Vodafone McLaren Mercedes) who drove through the field from fifteenth on the grid to a seventh placed finish. Mark Webber (Red Bull Racing) scored the final championship point with eighth place.
Two drivers, Rubens Barrichello (Honda Racing F1 Team) and Adrian Sutil (Force India F1 team), tried to use Bridgestone's dry grooved tyres, pitting late in the race for the medium compound. The rest of the field used the extreme wet and wet tyres, in a mixture of one and two stop strategies. Kimi Raikkonen (Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro) set the fastest lap of the race, a 1min 28.047secs, using the wet tyre on the final lap.
Leaving Monza, Hamilton continues to lead the drivers' championship with 78 points, albeit it with a reduced margin of one point from Massa on 77. Kubica is in third place on 64. Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro continue to lead the constructors' championship with 134 points, ahead of the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Team on 129. The BMW Sauber F1 Team are third with 117.
Bridgestone's Potenza Formula One tyres will be in action with the medium compound at Jerez next week where the majority of teams will be testing on September 17-19. The next race is the Singapore Grand Prix on September 26-28 where Bridgestone's soft and super soft compound Potenza tyres will tackle the exciting new Singapore street course.
Jun Matsuzaki - Chief Engineer, Bridgestone Motorsport, said:
"Congratulations to Sebastian Vettel and Toro Rosso for scoring their first Formula One race win. Their strategy was perfect for the conditions and Sebastian drove with a very mature head to become the youngest ever Grand Prix winner. The difficulty today was deciding when to change from the extreme wet to wet tyres, and the low downforce set-ups we see at Monza make driving in the wet a challenge, even for Formula One drivers. Performance of both tyres was strong and we saw good strategies from both BMW Saubers and Fernando Alonso to finish in good points scoring positions. We saw two drivers try the dry tyres but it was too soon for this to be of benefit as the track was still too wet."