Italian GP - Podium for Kimi at Monza
Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro salvaged third place in the Italian Grand Prix at Monza on Sunday as the McLaren Mercedes team sailed to a dominant one-two - Fernando Alonso ahead of Lewis Hamilton - as dominant as Ferrari had been two weeks earlier in Turkey. Kimi Raikkonen finished third, suffering from the after-effects of his huge practice accident as he found difficulty in keeping his head upright during the final stages of the race. Felipe Massa, sadly was one of two retirements after just ten laps of the race.
"This was definitely a tough race for me because of the pain I felt in my neck after yesterday's accident, which was bad enough to make it hard for me to hold my head steady under braking," Kimi said after the race. "Having said that, today we were not really quick enough. We knew it would not be an easy weekend, as we had already realized that in last week's test, with Friday and yesterday confirming it. The car was not bad in the first stint but then we were not strong enough. Hamilton's overtaking move? I tried to defend my position but he was definitely quicker than me. In the final stages I slowed to save the car for the next race. We were keen to win in front of our fans but we did not manage it. At least I got onto the podium. Now we tackle another fascinating circuit at Spa-Francorchamps where I think that we and our closest rivals will be more evenly matched."
Jean Todt also said, "We are very disappointed at having failed to secure a better result than just this third place for Kimi in our home Grand Prix. Felipe was forced to retire in the early stages because of a mechanical problem with the rear suspension, the cause of which has yet to be analysed. With Kimi, we ran a different strategy to our rivals but we did not have enough speed to get ahead of them. Clearly the situation in both championships is now more difficult. We will aim to do our best in the four remaining races, starting next weekend in Spa-Francorchamps."
Luca Baldisserri commented, "We are very disappointed and there is no use in denying it. We tried to change things around by putting Kimi on a different strategy, but in general we were not quick enough. Felipe was unable to show what he might have done, forced to retire after just a handful of laps because of a mechanical problem on the rear suspension, the causes of which we now have to find. It is very disappointing not to have given our fans and our colleagues who were in Monza today what they wanted. We hope to turn things around in the next races, starting with the Belgian Grand Prix next week."