Pirelli Gran Premio Del Made in Italy E Dell’Emilia Romagna. 

Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola Round 2

Lap record 1m 15.484s held byL Hamilton Mercedes (2020)

This circuit hosted the Italian GP in 1980 as Monza was being refurbished and was won by N Piquet in a Brabham Ford-Cosworth V8. The first seven cars were all powered by Ford-Cosworth engines, but from the 24 starters 18 were Ford-Cosworth, 2 Ferrari, 2 Renault & 2 Alfa Romeo. It also hosted 25 F1 races as the San Marino GP between 1981 and 2006. The first on 3rd May 1981 was 60 laps around the 5.040km circuit and was won byN Piquet driving a Brabham Ford Cosworth V8. The last race on 23rd April in 1906 was 62 laps around the 4.933km circuit was won by M Schumacher in a Ferrari V8. 

A verycool start to the weekend with the temperature at 11ºC. The drivers were warned about the track limits at turns 9 & 15. Vet had a brake issue, Per & Oco had a coming together causing the session to be red flagged. Maz off at the pit lane exit, 2nd red flag. Tsu had a PU issue. FP2 was slightly warmer at 14ºC. Vet stopped at the pit lane exit with a drive shaft problem. Lec went into the barrier at the end of the session. FP3 was cold at 10ºC. Lat clipped the barrier; red flag. Ver, Nor, Ham, Per & Lec were top five.

Qualifying in the afternoon was still very cool at 13ºC. Tsu crashed heavily into the barrier; red flags. Out with Tsu went both Haas & Alfa Romeo drivers. Q2 was a trouble free, but out went both Williams’ drivers as well as Alo, Vet, & Sai.. Q3 had some minor spins & offs. Ham, Per, Ver, Lec & Gas were the top five; Ham with his 99th pole. 

Heavy rain and temperature down to 9ºC meant the teams had to change their tyre strategy as inters & wets were the order of the day. Alo went off on the out lap clipping the barrier and had to pit for a new front wing. Both Aston Martin cars had brake problems the mechanics working frantically on the grid to get them underway. Unfortunately Vet was not quite ready and had to start from the pit lane. A good start by Ver passing Per and battling with Ham to take the lead. A great battle behind them between Lec & Per. Lot of offs in the wet conditions. Lat crashed into the barriers with a little help from Maz. Safety car deployed for 5 laps during which Sch clipped the barrier at the end of the pit lane losing his front wing meaning 2 slow laps before getting it fixed. Per went off, rejoined and overtook the 2 cars that had passed him (10 second penalty for overtaking under the s/car). Vet was the first to stop for slick tyres on lap 21. Ham went off and clipped the barrier and had to pit for a new wing. Rus & Bot both crashed heavily into the barriers; red flagged and all back to the pit lane. Tsu was shown the black & white flag & handed a 5 sec time penalty for exceeding track limits. Vet retired on lap 61 with gearbox gremlins. Ver won with Ham, who did a great job from 9th at the re-start & Nor after a superb drive joined him on the podium. Ham posted the fastest lap of 1m 16.702s on lap 61. 

Report No 3 

The 10 teams have all agreed to trial ‘sprint qualifying’ this year at 3 venues, with Silverstone to trial the first. The weekend format will be 1hr free practice on Friday morning, normal qualifying format in the afternoon with the results deciding the grid for the sprint race. Saturday morning will be another 1hr free practice with the sprint race of 100kms/30mins in the afternoon with the top 3 drivers being awarded points (3-2-1) & the results determining the grid for the race on Sunday. 

Are you confused.com???

Heineken Grande Prémio de Portugal 2021 – Sunday

Lap record 1m 18.750s held byL Hamilton Mercedes (2020) 

Prior to the start of the weekend it was announced that the exits of turns 1, 4 & 15 will be the track limits to watch out for with times being deleted for that lap & the following lap in practice & qualifying, during the race the black & white flag will be shown after the third occasion after that a report to the stewards.

FP1 was 17ºC bright & sunny in the Algarve. Calum Ilot was in the Alfa Romeo of Gio. Some spins and off circuit excursions and a lot of times deleted for exceeding the track limits mainly at turns 1 & 4. FP2 was slightly warmer at 19ºC but windy. Gio was back in his car. Another calm, trouble-free session, but with more spins & offs and times deleted. FP3 on Saturday morning was 17ºC and bright & sunny. Turn 14 was added to the track limits. VSC deployed for a short while after an advertising board blew across the circuit! More spins & offs, but not so many times deleted. Ver, Ham, Bot, Per & Oco made the top five. 

Qualifying was 18ºC and very windy. Some minor offs and more times deleted. Both Haas cars went out as did Lat, Str & Ric. Q2 was much the same. Out went both Alfa Romeo cars as well as Tsu, Alo & Rus. Q3 was not the usual fast and furious 12 minutes. Some minor offs and times deleted. Bot got his 17th career pole, with Ham, Ver, Per & Sai the top five. 

Race day was still very windy and 20ºC. The leaders got off the line well with some fierce battles going on behind them. Ric had a great start from 16th up to 13th at the end of lap 1. Räi ran into the back of Gio breaking his front wing ending up in the gravel trap. Safety car deployed. Re-start on lap 7 went smoothly with some position changes making it more exciting. Sai was the first to pit for a tyre change at the end of lap 21. Great battles & overtaking manoeuvres throughout the field. Bot pitted for a new set of tyres on lap 64. With the fastest lap in mind, Ver did exactly that on lap 65 and posted the fast lap only to have his time deleted for exceeding track limits. Hamtook the win with Ver & Bot joining him on the podium. Bot posted the fastest lap of 1m 19.865s on lap 66.