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2001 Italian Grand Prix 
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Drivers Championship
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 '05  '04  '03  '02  '01  '00  '99  '98  '97

Reports & Results from the Italian GP

Will the Williams last the distance ?

Williams will be dominant at Monza but the question will be will they last. They dominated at Hockenheim and the same is expected at Monza but they have had numerous engine failures and at Monza it will not be easy for those BMW engines.
Theyíll need a 1-2 finish here to edge closer to McLaren in the Constructorsí championship while Ralf Schumacher needs a win to boost his chances in finishing second.
If the Williams run into problems then either Ferrari or McLaren will capitalize on that however McLaren donít have that much better reliability so they could struggle as well.

The weather is unlikely to be a factor at Monza as it almost always sunny and warm this time of the year and that could give the Michelin runners an advantage.

Ferrari: Continued their winning form and didnít let up despite securing both titles. They will start using some components destined for the 2002 car so they might have a reliability issue. Winning at Monza though in front of the tifosi will be a definite motivating factor for them but it will be almost impossible if the Williamsí lasts.

Reliability 9.5/10 - Speed 9.5/10

Drivers: Michael Schumacher Won his 52nd race at Spa and now holds the most number of wins in Formula 1. One could say that he was fortunate to have both Williams cars struggle in Spa and Fisichella held up all those behind him but in the end he won the race convincingly. A podium finish is likely and a win is possible if both Williams cars struggle.

Rubens Barrichello didnít have what it takes so Michael could help him in Spa. He qualified in 5th and didnít appear to challenge for second place so Michael can help him. In general Ferrari will struggle here at Monza so donít expect miracle from Rubens. A top 6 finish is possible.

McLaren: They openly donít care about second place which means that they will be focusing their efforts on next yearís car. They wonít be able to keep in touch with Williams and may struggle to stay with Ferrari. Although both cars finished at Spa, reliability still seems to be an issue at McLaren.

Reliability 8.0/10 - Speed 9.0/10

Drivers: David Coulthard struggled to get past Fisichella in the Benetton at Spa. Sure the Benetton appeared to have improved dramatically but it also shows that the McLaren doesnít have the speed. Coulthard will try to maximize his points and a podium finish is possible although a top 6 finish is more likely.

Mika Hakkinen had his own race at Spa and finishing 4th behind Fisichella wasnít impressive. The continued delay in announcing the McLaren driver line-up just draws more speculation on the future of Mika Hakkinen as a driver for the team. A top 6 finish is likely.

Williams: They will finish 1-2 if they last. It is almost that simple, however, given the many engine failures they have suffered this season, it will probably be a miracle if they do finish 1st and 2nd.

Reliability 7.0/10 - Speed 9.5/10

Drivers: Ralf Schumacher could win if his car lasts and he appears easier on the car than his team-mate. In addition, if Montoya was ahead, the team might ask him to move over as Ralf is fighting for second place. Ralf ignored team orders twice this year so Montoya might just do the same. Either a top 2 finish or a retirement.

Juan Pablo Montoya now appears to be gaining on Ralf Schumacher within the team. He had had 2 Poles compared to Ralfís one and he could make it 3 here. Qualifying will be a battle between those two. In the race, Montoya will win if his car lasts and if the team doesnít ask him to yield to Ralf. He has retired in 10 out of 14 races so he is more likely to retire though!

Sauber: Had 2 DNFís at Spa and they appear to be having some reliability issues which is not usual for the Swiss based team. They appear to have come up with a low downforce configuration that is competitive so they could be the best of the rest and they have to be is they want to maintain 4th in the championship.

Reliability 7.0.10 - Speed 8.0/10

Drivers: Nick Heidfeld had another unlucky race at Spa and retired after colliding with Verstappen and de la Rosa. He has consistently finished in the top 10 when his car lasts (8 out of 14) so expect a similar performance here. A top 6 is possible if one or more of the top 3 teams struggle.

Kimi Raikkonen had a nasty crash at Magny-Cours during testing last week but he was OK. Expect him to beat his team-mate here in Qualifying and in the race. Heíll get some points if the cars ahead get into trouble.

BAR: Had a miserable race at Spa with Villeneuve finishing 8th and Panis in 12th that despite all the retirements. They did well at Hockenheim which is a similar track to Monza but that was mainly due to the large number of retirements at that race. BAR will only score points if a significant number of cars retire.

Reliability 8.0/10 - Speed 7.5/10

Drivers: Jacques Villeneuve is hoping like hell that the 2002 BAR will be competitive. For the last 3 years he has had an average car and the time is running out for him to prove that he still has what it takes. A top 10 finish is possible but points will be nearly impossible!

Olivier Panis managed to beat Villeneuve in qualifying several times early in the season but in the last 6 races he only did it once. Is he getting tired of trying with an average car or has Villeneuve responded. In the end, that doesnít really count as they are more likely to finish outside the points. A top 10 finish is possible.

Jordan: Once again Jarno Trulli retires with a car failure while in a points scoring positions. They would be far ahead of BAR and even Sauber had their reliability been sorted out. Donít expect much improvement on the situation as what is the point of fixing this yearís car for the last 3 races. They will be trying to learn from their mistakes for next season Ė Again!

Reliability 5.0/10 - Speed 8.0/10

Drivers: Jarno Trulli has had 4 retirements in a row and has only finished once in the last 9 attempts. (He was classified at Canada but he did retire). Almost everyone of those races he was in a points scoring position and assuming he would have finished 6th in each of those races, he would have been ahead of Montoya in the Driversí title and Jordan ahead of Sauber in 4th. I am sure he is relieved to go to Benetton especially after the dramatic improvements they showed at Spa. A top 10 finish is possible.

Jean Alesi scored his first point for Jordan in his second appearance. That must be impressive. What is more impressive is that his car lasted unlike Trulliís. Expect him to do well here as he has done well in the past finishing on the podium twice. He will be close to Trulli and could possible beat him. A top 10 finish is possible.

Benetton: They have made a dramatic turnaround at Spa. Expect them to do well at Monza as they claim to have more bits going on the car. Even though they are 6 points behind BAR and Jordan, with a bit of luck, they could beat both of them.

Reliability 7.0/10 - Speed 7.5/10 

Drivers: Giancarlo Fisichella will lose out going to Jordan as the signs are that Benetton will be a force to reckon with in 2002 while Jordan and Honda will again struggle with a brand new engine. Heíll do his best at Spa and could finish in the points.

Jenson Button will now have to move up a gear as the car is clearly more competitive but he still appears to be overshadowed by Fisichella. He needs to be careful as Briatore can easily replace him with Alonso or Webber next season. A top 10 finish is possible.

Jaguar: They had 5 retirements from the last 6 starts. Disastrous by any standards. With management changes and focus on next yearís car, donít expect that to improve in the last 3 races. They will be struggling with Arrows and Prost.

Reliability 5.5/10 - Speed 7.0/10

Drivers: Eddie Irvine has had 3 retirements in a row, the last one he and Burti clashed sending Burti into the tyre wall at high speed. Even if he does make it to the finish line, heíll be lucky to finish inside the top 10.

Pedro de la Rosa hasnít impressed at Jaguar since he joined them from the Spanish Grand Prix. I doubt that heíll stay at Jaguar next season despite the assurances made by Lauda. Unlikely to finish in the top 10.

Prost: After Qualifying in 4th at Spa - thanks to Frentzen and the Michelin tyres - Frentzen's car stalls before the start. Then Burti gets involved in a horrific crash but luckily he gets away with minor injuries. Prost are struggling financially and that won't help their performance.

Reliability 7.0/10 - Speed 6.5/10

Drivers: Heinz Harald Frentzen did very well at Spa in qualifying but his car stalled before the start relegating him to the back of the grid. He eventually finished 10th which is not bad considering the circumstances. The Prost won't shape at Monza and Frentzen would be happy to make it into the top 10 again.

Tomas Enge (replaces Luciano Burti)  is new to the game, he'll be under pressure as he will be judged by his performance from his very first race. Unfair but true. He'll probably drive conservatively and finish a lap or two down.

Arrows: They should do better at low downforce tracks such as Monza but they are so much underpowered that they'll still be at the back fighting with Jaguar, Prost and even Minardi.

Reliability 7.5/10 - Speed 5.5/10

Drivers: Jos Verstappen finished 11th at Spa despite all the retirements in front of him. His car is not helping him

Enrique Bernoldi is in the same boat as Verstappen in relation to the car but he is not shaping as a driver.  A top 10 finish is unlikely.

Minardi: Will be happy to qualify ahead of one or more teams and that is possible.

Reliability 4.5/10 - Speed 4.0/10

Drivers: Fernando Alonso needs a car that can show his real potential. He impresses in qualifying only for the car to fail on him during the race. Even if he finishes, it will be hard for him to finish in the top 10 though.

Alex Yoong (replaces Tarso Marques) will show the world if he is another driver who buys his seat into Formula 1 (just like the guy he is replacing) or if he deserves a chance. Like Enge, he shouldn't be judged from the first race but it will be interesting to see how close he will be to Alonso. He might take it easy and finish the race!.

Session 2001 2000
First Friday Practice Results Report Notes Results
Second Friday Practice Results Report Notes Results
First Saturday Practice Results Report Notes Results
Second Saturday Practice Results Report Notes Results
Qualifying Results Report Notes Results
Warm-up Results Report Notes Results
Race Results Report Notes Results

What the teams and drivers said
Friday - Saturday - Sunday

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