Italian Grand Prix Monza, Sunday 13th September Michael Schumacher: first, 1h 17m 09.672s, 53 laps Eddie Irvine: second at 37.977s At the start Eddie was third and Michael, who was fifth, took two laps to move up to fourth and then third,...
Italian Grand Prix Monza, Sunday 13th September
Michael Schumacher: first, 1h 17m 09.672s, 53 laps Eddie Irvine: second at 37.977s
At the start Eddie was third and Michael, who was fifth, took two laps to move up to fourth and then third, with Eddie right behind him. Schumacher passed Hakkinen on lap 17 and took the lead when Coulthard retired. Eddie moved up to third. Michael pitted on lap 31 and Eddie one lap later. Once all the leaders had pitted, the positions remained the same. On lap 49 Eddie passed Hakkinen and after 53 laps, the two Ferraris took the chequered flag in first and second place.
After the race, Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo sent this message by telephone: "I would like to thank everyone. I have dreamed of seeing Ferrari in this situation ever since I returned to maranello. Today reminds of that extraordinary occasion for me and for the tifosi in 1975, when we finished first and third here at Monza with Regazzoni and Lauda."
Jean Todt "This is a dream result, with our drivers in the top two places on the podium, in front of all our fans and all the staff of our motor sport department. It was a fantastic job from everyone - the drivers, the team and the cars. The start was difficult and I was nervous. There are two races to go. As usual we will do our utmost and put our heart and soul into doing well. However, we must stay calm and keep our feet on the ground."
Michael Schumacher "My compliments go to the team, who have worked night and day to make this great victory possible. After Hockenheim we thought Monza would be very difficult for us, but all this hard work paid off today. I also thank Eddie and Ralf for helping me get on equal terms with Hakkinen in the Championship. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong with my start today, which is why I lost a couple of places. Of course, Eddie did not make it difficult for me to pass and so I was able to chase the McLarens. At one point Mika seemed to have a problem, while David disappeared into the distance. I overtook Mika when he went wide into the second chicane. He lost exit speed and I was able to pass him. Later he closed the gap a little bit, but I do not think he would have been able to pass me. Now I am looking forward to Nuerburgring and Suzuka as both circuits should suit our car."
Eddie Irvine "I have not been on the podium for a while now and it is absolutely fantastic to finish second again, especially here at Monza. My start was not bad, I saw Michael moving towards me and I was worried he had not seen me, but I was able to get clear. I was bale to pull away from Villeneuve. I ran wide at Lesmo, losing three seconds but when Villeneuve went out I slowed my pace as the car was set up very stiff and was very difficult to drive. Then I hear about Hakkinen's problem and pushed hard again for a couple of laps. Once I had passed him I slowed down again."
Chassis: Schumacher no. 187, Irvine no. 184 Temperatures: air 20 C, track 30 C