Pierre Gasly wins amazing Italian Grand Prix

Pierre Gasly wins amazing Italian Grand Prix

06/09/2020

Alpha Tauri's Pierre Gasly held off Carlos Sainz to claim an astonishing first Formula One victory at a wild Italian Grand Prix.

A stop-go penalty for Lewis Hamilton and a race stoppage blew what had looked like a routine race wide open. Gasly was the man who capitalised, just over 12 months since he was demoted from Red Bull back to its junior team due to a lack of good results.

On the radio after the race, a jubilant Gasly shouted: ""Oh my God. What did we do!? We won the f------ race!"

For the Alpha Tauri team formerly known as Toro Rosso, it was its first victory since Sebastian Vettel won the 2008 Italian Grand Prix. Gasly is the first French F1 race winner since Olivier Panis at the 1996 Monaco Grand Prix.

Sainz, also searching for his maiden F1 victory, closed right up to Gasly on the final lap but was never close enough to make a move. He crossed the line just 0.4s behind Gasly's car. Racing Point's Lance Stroll took the third and final podium spot.

Hamilton had been leading comfortably until the deployment of the Safety Car on lap 23, which triggered the key moment. Mercedes immediately called Hamilton in to pit and he obliged, but entered the pit-lane while it was closed due to the positioning of Kevin Magnussen's broken-down Haas car.

That led to a 10-second stop-go penalty for Hamilton, but he would have to wait to serve it, with a heavy crash for Charles Leclerc prompting a red-flag suspension of the race. That meant the race restarted with the drivers forming up on the grid again. Gasly was able to get past Stroll at the restart and from that point it was his race to lose.

Hamilton served the penalty two laps after the restart and was able to fight back to seventh position. Hamilton's setback did little to his championship hopes, with Max Verstappen retiring from the race and Valtteri Bottas struggling from the start. Bottas seemed to lack pace throughout the grand prix and had to settle for fifth position behind McLaren's Lando Norris.

Renault's Daniel Ricciardo finished sixth between the two Mercedes drivers.

Neither Ferrari driver made it to the finish, with an early brake failure ending Sebastian Vettel's race. Leclerc's accident followed, meaning Ferrari's home race lasted just 25 laps.

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