Lewis Hamilton revived his bid for this year’s Formula One world title yesterday when he swept to a dominant triumph for McLaren to record his first-ever win in the Italian Grand Prix.
The 27-year-old Briton, starting from pole position, led throughout apart from a brief spell during the mid-race pit-stops to claim his third win this year and the 20th of his career.
McLaren ace Lewis Hamilton celebrates after winning the Italian Grand Prix in Monza yesterday
It lifted him back into contention for the championship, but his McLaren teammate and fellow-Briton Jenson Button’s hopes of a second world title disappeared as he was forced to retire with 20 laps remaining.
Button’s demise allowed Mexican Sergio Perez of Sauber to gain full reward for a dazzling drive by finishing second 4.3 seconds behind Hamilton, 16.2 ahead of championship leader Spaniard Fernando Alonso of Ferrari.
It was Perez’s third podium finish of the season and endorsed the view of many paddock observers that he could be on the move to replace Massa at Ferrari next year.
Alonso leads the championship with 179 points ahead of Hamilton on 142 and Finland’s former world champion Kimi Raikkonen on 141 — defending champion Sebastian Vettel is on 140 with seven races remaining.
Hamilton, who sported the Italian flag on his helmet said his victory felt “very special, very, very special, because Italy is a country I have loved for a long time since I started to come here to race when I was just 13.”
Four points for Di Resta
Monza: Sahara Force India driver Paul di Resta finished eighth in the Italian Grand Prix here to bring home four points for the team yesterday. Teammate Nico Hulkenberg had to retire three laps from the finish. However, he was still classified 21st as he finished more than 90 percent of the race.