Lewis Hamilton won the Italian Grand Prix from the pole and took the lead in the Formula 1 Drivers Championship. Hamilton’s teammate, Valtteri Bottas, was second, and was followed closely by Scuderia Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel. The rain soaked weekend shortened practice and qualifying, but did not dampen the spirit of the fans, who were as exuberant as always.

Hometown favorite Ferrari struggled from the beginning

The Italian Grand Prix is held at Monza, less than 100 miles from the home of Scuderia Ferrari in Maranello. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the historic race and a win at their home track would have been a tremendous success for the Prancing Horse.

Ferrari knew going into the weekend that they may struggle, as Monza is not an ideal track for their current car and set up. Nonetheless, the team spoke optimistically of their chances.

However, from the first few rounds of qualifying it was clear that the Petronas Mercedes cars of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas were fast. Scuderia Ferrari was not off the pace horribly, but enough to cause concern. Despite the lack of speed, Ferrari’s fans, the tifosi, were out in full force and lent their support to the struggling team. Ferrari continued to struggle with their set up and never found the exact combination to make their cars fast. Kimi Raikkonen struggled all day, often coming over the radio to ask his team if the back end of the car was having a problem.

Sebastian Vettel battled his car and the field to come home in third place.

From beginning to end Lewis Hamilton was fast

From the first moment the cars rolled onto the track, Lewis Hamilton was fast. His car never showed to be anything less than perfection, even during the rain soaked moments of practice and qualifying. Hamilton took the pole, and from the start of the race opened up an insurmountable lead from the rest of the field.

Teammate, Valtteri Bottas was also fast, passing people with speed and precision and bringing his car into second. Bottas was in need of a good run as his contract is still open and has not been finalized for next year. His performance at Monza was promising and his ability to work well with Hamilton may prove to be just what the negotiations needed to come to a close.

Lewis Hamilton’s victory at Monza put him three points up on rival Sebastian Vettel. The fight for the championship has been tighter with the start of the second half of the season. In addition, Valtteri Bottas sits in third place in the championship, still a viable possibility if he continues to rack up points with solid finishes. This weekend, however, was about Monza and Ferrari. Despite Mercedes 1-2 finish, it was Sebastian Vettel in third that garnered cheers and praise from the crowd. After all, it is Ferrari’s home track, an Italian race for an Italian team, and neither rain nor lost victory could detract from the devotion of the tifosi for Ferrari.