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Italy 2004 Italian Grand Prix
Monza040912
Race 15 of 18 in the 2004 Formula One Season
Date 12 September 2004
Official name LXXV Gran Premio Vodafone d'Italia 2004
Location Autodromo Nazionale Monza

5.793 km (3.6 mi)

Distance 53 laps, 306.720 km (190.58 mi)
Weather Wet track at the start, dry later on
Pole Position
Driver Brazil Rubens Barrichello (Ferrari)
Time 1:20.089
Fastest Lap
Driver Brazil Rubens Barrichello (Ferrari)
Time 1:21.046 on lap 41
Podium
First Brazil Rubens Barrichello (Ferrari)
Second Germany Michael Schumacher (Ferrari)
Third United Kingdom Jenson Button (BAR-Honda)

The 2004 Italian Grand Prix was a Formula One race held on September 12, 2004 at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza. Ferrari took a 1-2 in front of the delighted Tifosi, with Rubens Barrichello ahead of team mate Michael Schumacher. Both cars had to make their way through the field from the back, Barrichello having made an early pitstop after choosing the wrong tyres at the start and Schumacher having spun on the first lap. The race was perhaps best known for speed records set during the race.

ReportEdit

QualifyingEdit

In the first part of qualifying (which did not count towards grid positions), Juan Pablo Montoya lapped Monza in his Williams FW26 at an average speed of 262.242 km/h (162.9 mph), the fastest ever qualifying lap in the history of Formula One. The next day in the race, Montoya's team-mate Antônio Pizzonia reached a top speed of 369.9 km/h (229.9 mph), the fastest speed ever recorded in Formula One at the time (it was to be exceeded by Montoya in 2005). Rubens Barrichello’s qualifying lap of 1’20.089 (161.820mph) failed to surpass Juan Pablo Montoya’s record-breaking effort in practice of 1’19.525 (162.968mph), but it put him on pole position.

RaceEdit

It doesn’t often rain on the Italian Grand Prix. But the 2004 race began on a greasy surface that played to the strengths of Michelin’s dry weather rubber and exposed the only real flaw in Ferrari’s Bridgestone armour. Starting from first position Barrichello played it conservatively and opted for intermediate tyres. Michael Schumacher, third, opted for dry-weather grooves. That was his first mistake. Mistake number two came on the run down to the first corner. He braked too late, cut the chicane, and had to yield third place to Juan Pablo Montoya. Montoya’s Williams struggled so badly for traction that Kimi Räikkönen and Takuma Sato also passed Schumacher as they sprinted towards the della Roggia chicane. Mistake number three saw the German understeer into the side of Button at the chicane, spinning to a halt and watching the entire field pass him. Was this the same man who had won 12 of the last 14 rounds? From that moment on he certainly was, as he carved his way from the back of the pack into contention for the lead.

Up front Barrichello’s intermediate tyres were proving the better Bridgestone choice – but not half as good as Michelin dry tyres. Fernando Alonso pinched the lead off him at Ascari on lap four, and Barrichello dived into the pits for dry weather rubber. By lap six Barrichello was ninth, Schumacher was 11th, and Alonso and Button were up front – Alonso’s early pit stop on lap 10 handing the initiative to the Englishman. He held the lead for 24 laps until his final pit stop. But by two-thirds race distance the Ferraris were back at the sharp end. The track had dried quickly and the F2004s instantly assumed their usual crushing advantage, Schumacher cutting a second per lap off Button’s lead.

When Barrichello made his last stop on lap 42 he resumed in the lead. As he returned to the track, had he looked in his mirrors he would have seen Schumacher flying past Button so quickly the BAR driver couldn’t even catch the Ferrari’s slipstream down the Monza straight. The opening laps had been an illusion. Able to lap up to 1.5s faster than any other driver on the track the Ferrari decimated their opponents despite their early handicap.

During the race there was chaos in the Minardi pit garage as the car of Gianmaria Bruni caught fire after fuel escaped from the hose onto the hot bodywork during a routine pit-stop, fortunately it was put out without any serious injury. However, Bruni inhaled some of the extinguishant and was having trouble breathing and so the team decided to retire the car.

Classification Edit

Qualifying Edit

Pos No Driver Constructor Lap Gap
1 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Ferrari 1:20.089
2 3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya Williams-BMW 1:20.620 +0.531
3 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari 1:20.637 +0.548
4 8 Spain Fernando Alonso Renault 1:20.645 +0.556
5 10 Japan Takuma Sato BAR-Honda 1:20.715 +0.626
6 9 United Kingdom Jenson Button BAR-Honda 1:20.786 +0.697
7 6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen McLaren-Mercedes 1:20.877 +0.788
8 4 Brazil Antônio Pizzonia Williams-BMW 1:20.888 +0.799
9 7 Italy Jarno Trulli Renault 1:21.027 +0.938
10 5 United Kingdom David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 1:21.049 +0.960
11 16 Brazil Ricardo Zonta Toyota 1:21.520 +1.431
12 14 Australia Mark Webber Jaguar-Cosworth 1:21.602 +1.513
13 17 France Olivier Panis Toyota 1:21.841 +1.752
14 15 Austria Christian Klien Jaguar-Cosworth 1:21.989 +1.900
15 11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Sauber-Petronas 1:22.239 +2.150
16 12 Brazil Felipe Massa Sauber-Petronas 1:22.287 +2.198
17 18 Germany Nick Heidfeld * Jordan-Ford 1:22.301 +2.212
18 19 Italy Giorgio Pantano Jordan-Ford 1:23.239 +3.150
19 21 Hungary Zsolt Baumgartner Minardi-Cosworth 1:24.808 +4.719
20 20 Italy Gianmaria Bruni Minardi-Cosworth 1:24.910 +4.821

* Nick Heidfeld was demoted to 20th place after receiving a ten-place penalty for an engine change in Friday practice.

Race Edit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Ferrari 53 1:15:18.448 1 10
2 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari 53 +1.347 3 8
3 9 United Kingdom Jenson Button BAR-Honda 53 +10.197 6 6
4 10 Japan Takuma Sato BAR-Honda 53 +15.370 5 5
5 3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya Williams-BMW 53 +32.352 2 4
6 5 United Kingdom David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 53 +33.439 10 3
7 4 Brazil Antônio Pizzonia Williams-BMW 53 +33.752 8 2
8 11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Sauber-Petronas 53 +35.431 15 1
9 14 Australia Mark Webber Jaguar-Cosworth 53 +56.761 12  
10 7 Italy Jarno Trulli Renault 53 +1:06.316 9  
11 16 Brazil Ricardo Zonta Toyota 53 +1:22.531 11  
12 12 Brazil Felipe Massa Sauber-Petronas 52 +1 Lap 16  
13 15 Austria Christian Klien Jaguar-Cosworth 52 +1 Lap 14  
14 18 Germany Nick Heidfeld Jordan-Ford 52 +1 Lap 20  
15 21 Hungary Zsolt Baumgartner Minardi-Cosworth 50 +3 Laps 19  
Ret 8 Spain Fernando Alonso Renault 40 Spin 4  
Ret 19 Italy Giorgio Pantano Jordan-Ford 33 Accident 17  
Ret 20 Italy Gianmaria Bruni Minardi-Cosworth 29 Fire 18  
Ret 6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen McLaren-Mercedes 13 Engine 7  
Ret 17 France Olivier Panis Toyota 0 Collision 13  

Lap leaders Edit

Standings after the raceEdit

Drivers' Championship standingsEdit

Pos. Driver Points
1rightarrow blue 1 Germany Michael Schumacher 136
1rightarrow blue 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello 98
1rightarrow blue 3 United Kingdom Jenson Button 71
1rightarrow blue 4 Italy Jarno Trulli 46
1rightarrow blue 5 Spain Fernando Alonso 45


Constructors' Championship standingsEdit

Pos. Driver Points
1rightarrow blue 1 Italy Ferrari 234
1uparrow green 1 2 United Kingdom BAR-Honda 94
1downarrow red 1 3 France Renault 91
1rightarrow blue 4 United Kingdom Williams-BMW 60
1rightarrow blue 5 United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 52


  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.
  • Bold text indicates the World Champions.


ReferencesEdit

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2004_Italian_Grand_Prix
  2. http://www.statsf1.com/en/2004/italie.aspx
  3. http://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr728.html

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