Hamilton survives probe at Monza to win Italy GP
MONZA, Italy (CMC):
Lewis Hamilton dominated Monza yesterday to win the Italian Grand Prix, but was forced to endure a stewards' enquiry into the tyre pressure of his Mercedes, before he could celebrate his second straight win at the historic venue.
Starting on pole, Hamilton drove superbly to clock one hour, 18 minutes and finish 25 seconds clear of the second-placed Sebastien Vettel of Ferrari.
Felipe Massa of Williams finished third, and with Hamilton's main rival, teammate Nico Rosberg, retiring three laps from the end with engine failure, the Brit leapt 53 points clear in the Formula One drivers championship.
He now has 252 points, with Rosberg second on 199 and Vettel third on 178.
"This weekend has been just fantastic. It has been a perfect weekend for me. I don't know if I have ever had a weekend like this. This circuit is such a special one ... . I think it's the same for all the drivers," said Hamilton, whose paternal grandparents hail from Grenada.
"When you stand on top of that podium, you feel incredible pride and incredibly proud to be amongst the greats that have stood up there, and when you see a sea of fans - a lot of them in red - but the sea of fans is just unlike anything I've seen. It's very emotional when you are up there."
Hamilton had a dream start in getting away well, and after Kimi Raikkonen, who qualified second, lagged on the grid, the reigning world champion built a lead of nearly two seconds after the first lap.
He was 12 seconds clear of Vettel after 20 laps, an advantage that left the result in little doubt.
"I got a good start. I think we all probably got a difficult start and managed to hold ground," Hamilton explained.
"Sebastian was really fair into turn one, and after that, it was really just chipping away, looking after the tyres, trying to look after the tyres whilst chipping away ... trying to take time away, increase the time, the gap behind. I was generally able to control it, really, after that. I felt comfortable."