THIS STORY APPEARS IN THE SEPTEMBER 11 ISSUE OF MOTORSPORT ILLUSTRATED NEWS
Appearances, as the old saying reminds us, can be deceiving. Last Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix was won by the driver who started on pole, a regular occurrence at the circuit the locals call la pista magica (‘the magic track’) at Monza. With one or two exceptions, the majority of the top-10 finishers ended the 53 laps where they started. And the skies over the famous royal park outside of Milan, which were ominously black hours before the race start, somehow didn’t turn the 12th round of this year’s world championship into a waterlogged mess.
But to describe Sebastian Vettel’s sixth win of what is looking like his fourth straight championship season as routine would be selling him – and the race he triumphed in – short. With fights from first to last, two front-runners forced into atypical pit stop strategies before scything through the field, and reliability gremlins waiting to pounce with several cars in the latter stages, this was a race that was tense until the chequered flag.
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