Can we start with how happy I am the summer break is finally over? I know the season is tough on the teams and it’s good for them to rest but it’s tough on fans. We go through withdrawals.
Fantastic news that Kimi has been signed for one more year at Ferrari, too. That makes the rest of the driver moves much more complicated and that makes me happy. Verstappen now has fewer options and will have to put his diva attitude on hold. Alonso still might make a move (and that move may not even be within Formula 1).
As for the race, the flying laps in qualifying were insane. They destroyed the old track record and Hamilton came back from the break intent on taking the points lead away from Vettel. But Vettel was right on his heels, as shown at the start of the race today. They took off for that first corner and Hamilton only barely had the advantage. It also took him a few laps to build a lead. Ferrari is after him and they’re throwing everything they can at it.
A team that needs to sort out their driver situation, however, is Force India. Checo and Ocon got into each other on lap one and then again later leading to a clipped front wing for one and a blown rear tire for the other. They’ve already been told the team interests come first and they continue to bicker like middle school children on the track. One will probably end up getting moved but I’m not sure which one will get to stay.
Force India’s team quarrel also led to a late race safety car, which destroyed Hamilton’s gap he’d built up over the race and put Vettel right back in the thick of it. But somehow, despite Vettel being on Ultra Soft tires and Hamilton being on the Soft tires, Hamilton manages to squeeze out the win.
It was thrilling to watch, especially with Ricciardo sneaking his way onto the podium ahead of both Kimi and Bottas. Kimi’s was due to a 10 second penalty handed to him because the stewards said he didn’t slow down for a caution (he disagreed over the radio, as Kimi does).
The second half of this season will not disappoint. And Monza is just around the corner. Can’t wait to see how it all unfolds.