Ferrari failed to defend its home turf in Formula 1 at the 2017 Italian Grand Prix at Monza, surrendering both first and second place to Mercedes AMG. Scuderia Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel managed to preserve some of the team’s honor, clinching the final spot on the podium, but the result means that he’s slipped back to second place in the driver’s championship behind Lewis Hamilton. Fellow Ferrari driver Kimi Räikkönen finished the race in fifth, with Red Bull Racing’s Daniel Ricciardo splitting the two teammates.
Ferrari Chairman Sergio Marchionne blames the team’s disappointing showing at Monza on inadequate preparation for the home race. “I think we just screwed up,” he told German broadcaster RTL. “The set-up for the car was wrong. I think we underestimated the circuit.
“I think we screwed up from Belgium, from Spa, into here,” Marchionne continued. “Now, we need to go back to the factory and find out which way the car went sideways. But we will be back in Singapore.”
Vettel says he’s “not too stressed” about losing the championship lead to Hamilton, chalking his pace up to a problem with the car that cropped up after he made a mistake heading into the first chicane on lap 40. “After my off something was wrong with the car,” he said after the race. “The car was pulling to one side and I didn’t trust the car under braking anymore, so I just tried to control the gap.” He managed to hold Ricciardo off for the remainder of the race despite the issue, crossing the finish a full 36.3 seconds behind race winner Lewis Hamilton.
Seven rounds remain in the 2017 Formula 1 season, giving Vettel plenty of opportunities to reclaim the championship lead. Ferrari, meanwhile, faces an uphill battle to claim the constructor’s title, being now 62 points behind Mercedes AMG.