The final race of the European leg for the Formula One season sees the teams head to hallowed ground, as the Autodromo di Monza brings a very different test for all the drivers and their high-revving machines. This cathedral of pure speed sees all the engines being pushed to full throttle for around 80% of the lap, as well as providing the sternest test when it comes to braking.
The gearboxes and engines are the main components that come under the biggest stresses during the Grand Prix weekends, as Fernando Alonso suffered his own misfortune with his Renault blowing up in dramatic fashion in 2006. Even the smallest mistake can make sure that a race will not end in the way a driver may expect when pushing too hard, as Lewis Hamilton found out not that long ago.
The atmosphere at Monza is magical, with the “Tifosi” cheering on their scarlet heroes, but this is a race that all want to win, but managing their equipment is the key to success. A low downforce set up is a normality for all the drivers, due to the fact that it assists in maximizing acceleration and top speed when going down the straights. There are only three main corners, Parabolica and both turns on the Curva di Lesmo, where the drivers must make the best entry and exit possible, with two DRS zones from Rettifilo Tribune and Curva del Serraglio helping to assist overtaking on the track with the fastest average speed per lap every year.
An expectant and passionate crowd fills the stands and cheers loudly for their favorites, as the roar echoes around the forest where speed lives through the veins of many…
Track Length: 5.793km
Race first appearance: 1950
Most wins: Michael Schumacher (5 victories)
2012 Pole Position: Lewis Hamilton (1:24.010)
2012 Race Winner: Lewis Hamilton
2012 Fastest Lap: Nico Rosberg (1:27.239)
Flying Lap of the Autodromo di Monza (Lewis Hamilton, 2012)
Image credit (c) Octane Photographic