Pierre Gasly Grabs Maiden F1 Victory at 2020 Italian Grand Prix

Pierre Gasly became the 109th different Formula One winner after edging out Carlos Sainz for victory in a dramatic 2020 Italian Grand Prix, as Lewis Hamilton recovered from a stop and go penalty to finish seventh.

Lewis Hamilton led from pole ahead of Sainz as Valtteri Bottas dropped to sixth but the Brit received a ten second stop and go penalty, after pitting at end of lap 20 when the pit lane was closed to allow for Kevin Magnussen’s Haas to be cleared into the pits.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc brought out the red flag immediately after a safety car restart when he lost control through the Parabolica to crash heavily, before Hamilton received his penalty.

Gasly then benefitted from a standing restart to climb to second and inherited the lead when Hamilton pitted to serve his penalty, eventually clinging on for victory from Sainz who had reeled the Frenchman in during the closing stages to become the first French winner since Oliver Panis won in Monaco in 1996 for Ligier.

Alpha Tauri meanwhile becomes the first team to win in their maiden season since Lotus at Abu Dhabi in 2012, although both teams were simply a renaming of Toro Rosso and Renault respectively.

Lance Stroll clinched his second F1 podium in third ahead of Lando Norris, Bottas, Daniel Ricciardo, Hamilton, Esteban Ocon, Daniil Kvyat and Sergio Perez.

In terms of drivers’ standings, Hamilton leads Bottas by 47 points as the Finnish driver climbs above Max Verstappen after the Red Bull driver retired with a power unit issue.

Mercedes continue to lead the Constructors’ battle from Red Bull as McLaren pulled a gap on Racing Point to 16 points as they scrap for third ahead of Renault, whilst Alpha Tauri remain seventh despite taking the win.

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At the original start, Hamilton got a clean getaway to lead Sainz as Bottas got bogged down behind Norris, Perez and Ricciardo whilst Alex Albon fell from ninth to 15th after a disastrous getaway.

Sebastian Vettel’s race came to an early end when he suffered a brake failure at the start of lap six as he battled George Russell, before eventually retiring one lap later after returning to the pits.

Up front, Hamilton had built up a 13.5s lead over Sainz by lap 20 when the safety car was deployed after Magnussen retired to the inside of the Parabolica with a power unit issue, causing the pit lane to be closed whilst his car was wheeled into the pits but Hamilton and Antonio Giovinazzi both stopped at the end of that lap and were consequently hit with individual 10s stop and go penalties once racing resumed.

Leclerc however had other ideas as he lost the rear end of his Ferrari at the end of the restart on lap 24 midway through the Parabolica and spun off into the tyre barrier, causing a near 30 minute red flag with Stroll the only driver within the top ten to had not stopped prior to the race suspension.

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Under new rules, the race restarted with a standing start on lap 28 as Hamilton again made a clean getaway from Stroll who was swallowed up by Gasly, Kimi Raikkonen, Giovinazzi and Sainz, with Gasly claiming the lead at the end of that lap as Hamilton pitted to serve his penalty to drop to 17th position and Giovinazzi followed suit on lap 31 and re-joined as the final driver on the road.

Verstappen meanwhile had found himself behind Bottas in seventh in the first half of this race but a power issue forced him to become the final retirement of this race after just three laps on the restart.

Raikkonen began lap 34 sat in second but found himself passed by Sainz, Stroll, Bottas and Ricciardo within the following five laps, as all but Stroll made their moves into Variante whilst the Canadian got past the Alfa Romeo driver round the outside of Della Roggia.

Sainz meanwhile set about reeling in Gasly at circa 0.3s every two laps to find himself 1.3s behind the Frenchman at the start of lap 50 but Gasly managed to pull 0.3s on the Spaniard by the beginning of the following lap, which ultimately proved enough despite Sainz reeling him in throughout the final three laps to eventually fall 0.415s short at the flag.

Elsewhere, Hamilton recovered to seventh despite needing 12 laps to catch and pass Albon before quickly reeling off Russell and Grosjean across laps 41 and 42 before clearing Latifi and the fading Raikkonen by lap 46, although he had to wait three laps before demoting Perez to tenth then a further two laps to pass Kvyat and eventually Ocon at the start of the final lap.

 

Race Result

Position Driver Team Laps Time
1 Pierre Gasly Alpha Tauri 53 1h 47m 06.056
2 Carlos Sainz McLaren 53 + 0.415
3 Lance Stroll Racing Point 53 + 3.358
4 Lando Norris McLaren 53 + 6.000
5 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 53 + 7.108
6 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 53 + 8.391
7 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 53 + 17.245
8 Esteban Ocon Renault 53 + 18.691
9 Daniil Kvyat Alpha Tauri 53 + 22.208
10 Sergio Perez Racing Point 53 + 23.224
11 Nicholas Latifi Williams 53 + 32.876
12 Romain Grosjean Haas 53 + 35.164
13 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo 53 + 36.312
14 George Russell Williams 53 + 36.593
15 Alex Albon Red Bull 53 + 37.533
16 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 53 + 55.199
17 Max Verstappen Red Bull 30 Power
18 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 23 Spin
19 Kevin Magnussen Haas 17 Power
20 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 6 Brakes

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