2019 Italian GP: Race pace (Midfield teams)

The image is a vector, so you can click on it, and it will open in a new window. From there, you can zoom in as much as you want and you will be able to see in which lap was each individual time done.

If a driver is not in the chart, it is because he did not finish the race, therefore his pace is not really comparable to the pace of the rest of the drivers.

Analysis

Renault

The big winners of the midfield on Sunday. The French team took perhaps their biggest step so far, claiming a 4th and 5th position in Monza. Both drivers showed superb pace, with Daniel Ricciardo being the fastest driver of the midfield drivers. Danny Ric was in fact around half a tenth slower than Alex Albon in the Red Bull car (1:25.186 vs 1:25.126). Nico Hulkenberg also had a lonely race, but managed to outpace the next fastest midfield driver (Checo Pérez) by over 2 tenths of a second per lap.

Racing Point

Checo Pérez was one of the best drivers of the day. Charles Leclerc took the spotlight with his victory at the home of Ferrari, but Checo was superb during the race. The Mexican went from 18th place to claim a 7th position at the end of the race, all while having an average race pace of 1:25.479 per lap. The cherry on top for Checo was his masterful defense to to keep Max Verstappen at bay at the end of the race.

Lance Stroll was unlucky this time. Stroll was on pace to finish on a good position at the beginning of the race, but was then clipped by Sebastian Vettel and lost control of the car. To make things worse, Stroll then made a mistake and almost took Gasly out, costing him a drive through penalty. The Canadian driver still managed to put on a good race, being half a tenth faster per lap than Lando Norris in his McLaren.

McLaren

Not the best race for the British team. Lando Norris managed to rescue a point for McLaren, but Carlos Sainz had to retire once again. Lando showed good pace once again, but the hard compound was too slow during the second half of the race. The young rookie still managed to finish ahead of Pierre Gasly, with a strong Toro Rosso car, but one point over the weekend may seem pale after last week’s race at Spa.

Not much to say about Carlos Sainz. The Spaniard was unlucky once again, with the pit crew making a mistake when putting on the front right tire. Carlos will now try to get a good result at Singapore, a race that should bring him back some good memories.

Alfa Romeo

Eventful is how I would describe Alfa Romeo’s race. Antonio Giovinazzi gave one of his best performances of the season, claiming a valuable 2 points and showing that he keeps getting better as the season goes on. Gio was not particularly fast, with a mean time of 1:25.820 seconds per lap, but it was enough to keep Norris at bay.

Kimi Raikkonen’s race was a complete disaster. Starting from the pit lane, he started the race with the medium compound, instead of the soft tires that he used in Q2. Kimi was penalized with a 10 second stop/go penalty, and had no chance of catching up with the rest of the field. Kimi had some eloquent words to summarize his time in Monza: “Well that was a sh** weekend.”

Toro Rosso

Another team punished by the lack of reliability. Daniil Kvyat was driving a good race before he had to retire due to an oil leak. Pierre Gasly had a great second stint with the soft tires, but it was not enough to get into the points. His race pace of 1:25.910 per lap was the second worst among drivers with a 1-stop strategy, only faster than George Russell’s pace.

Haas

Another race, another miserable day for Haas. Kevin Magnussen was actually doing a good race, being able to keep Checo Pérez behind for a good number of laps, but things then fell apart. KMag’s had an atrocious second stint with the medium tires, before retiring with a hydraulics issue.

Romain Grosjean was one of the worst drivers of the day. His race pace of 1:26.770 was incredibly even slower than Russell’s pace in the Williams. Things keep going from bad to worse with the American team.

Williams

It is hard to say that a driver had a good race after finishing in 14th place, but that is exactly what happened with George Russell. The former Formula 2 champion managed to outpace Kimi, Romain and Robert Kubica, all while using the slowest car of the grid. His race pace of 1:26.518 was not fast by any means, but I would argue that it is close to the limits of the current car.

Robert Kubica was once again the slowest of the grid. I sound like a broken record saying this over and over again. To be fair, this time Robert had mechanical issues with the car, with the brake pedal collapsing during the race. Not much else to say about the Pole, just another same old race for him.

Final remarks

I would take two main points from yesterday’s race. One, Renault is looking better and better, and with a better start to the season, they could have been challenging McLaren by now. Let’s see how they look with a high aerodynamic package in Singapore before jumping to conclusions though. Two, Racing Point seems to be back. Checo is showing his great race pace once again, and has claimed 14 points in the last two races. Good to see the Pink Panthers back on track.

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