2009 Italian GP: Reality Check

einnahsCorrespondent ISeptember 13, 2009

MONZA, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 13:  Race winner Rubens Barrichello (C) of Brazil and Brawn GP celebrates with second placed team mate Jenson Button (L) of Great Britain and Brawn GP and third placed Kimi Raikkonen (R) of Finland and Ferrari on the podium following the Italian Formula One Grand Prix at the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza on September 13, 2009 in Monza, Italy.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Monza: the engine-killer track, and the spiritual home of the tifosi. It's always great atmosphere when race venues are packed with fans, but I have to admit this has never been one of my favourite circuits.

Firstly, I'm not Italian, and races here tend to be a bit straight-forward (i.e., blah). Unless it rains, which this weekend it didn't (not for F1, at least).

So as usual, a quick recap of the Italian Grand Prix:

  • Ferrari-Santander announcement. Plus 1. Biggest non-event ever. Spanish press slink away in disappointment. Will take about another two days before the Alonso-to-Ferrari rumours resurge.
  • Piquet-Renault crap-slinging fest. Minus 2. I wished I cared more, but I really don't.
  • Critics go nuts when Fisichella outpaces Kimi by three-hundredths of a second in FP1. Minus 1. Then all goes silent when Kimi is faster in FP2, FP3 and qualifying. Plus 2. Suckers.
  • Both Williams out in Q1. Minus 5. Wow, they haven't looked this bad in a while.
  • Both BMW engines die in Q2. Minus 5. Ouch.
  • Fisichella qualifies P14. Minus 1. More proof that the F60 is really pretty sucky. I hope Fisi does better the next race.
  • Liuzzi makes it to Q3. Plus 2. Impressive, best debut this season.
  • Lewis on pole! Plus 2. Looking good.
  • Sutil qualifies P2. Plus 2. Well done. Should have been good for pole though.
  • Kimi qualifies P3. Plus 2. Yay!
  • Red Bulls ninth and tenth on the grid. Minus 2. Hmm, this is slightly worrying.
  • Pre-race fuel loads. Plus 1. Has to be the most interesting grid so far... Seems like only the top three are on a two-stop strategy.
  • Not so good start by Lewis, but enough to keep the lead. Plus 1. As expected, KERS-equipped Kimi gets past Sutil at turn one. Plus 1.
  • Webber taken out on the first lap. Minus 1. Too bad they didn't manage to get an interview straight after, Mark's comments would have been colourful.
  • Nothing much happens during the race. Minus 2.
  • Toyotas fighting it out in the last part of the race. Plus 1. Most entertaining battle happening on track.
  • Lewis loses the car on the last lap. Minus 2. Ooh... hard shunt. Just when I thought the race finish was a goner and started reading the papers, this happened. Plus 1, for waking everybody up.
  • Brawn 1-2. Plus 2. Good job by both drivers, quick car, superior strategy by the team. Confidence boost for Button, will Barrichello catch him? Four races left...
  • Kimi finishes in P3! Plus 2. Fourth podium in a row, baby! No doubt, a few dashes of luck involved, but we'll take whatever we can get, thanks.
  • Sutil picks up P4. Plus 2. Brilliant job by Force India again. And for Sutil, getting stuck behind a red car may be a bit better than getting rammed by one.
  • Heikki finishes P6. Minus 3. Sigh. It does seem like he dropped the ball on this one.
  • Sucky day for the Red Bulls, P8 + DNF. Minus 2. Dear oh dear oh dear.
  • Eddie Jordan criticizes Fisichella-Ferrari move for the umpteenth time. Minus 5. Piss off already.
  • Post-race: Button telling his race-engineer to chill. Minus 1. Right. Remind yourself of the same before you start whining about the car sucking next time.

Two weeks to Singapore! Should be pretty entertaining, chance of safety car high even without Piquet Jr.'s help, and there may be some rain to spice things up.

In the meantime, the Renault trial and endless silly season drivel should be enough to keep everyone occupied.

See you all under the floodlights! Cheers ;)


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