Carlos Sainz presents candidacy to be one of the greats (Laia Bonals)

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He has had to touch it. Carlos Sainz (McLaren), who despite being in second place, was the clear protagonist of the Italian Grand Prix at the Monza circuit with the permission of the winner, Pierre Gasly (Alphatauri). Up to two yellow flags and one red flag have completely changed the course of the Grand Prix and have led to unlikely situations, such as seeing Lewis Hamilton last in the queue for drivers.

The race in Monza has actually been two races. In the first half, Hamilton came out from the pole and has been placed first without opposition. The two McLarens hit the table and Sainz finished second and Lando Norris third, while Bottas sank to sixth. Since then, the race has passed normally and according to the planned script. What has not been a surprise have been the problems of Ferrari, which have led Sebastian Vettel to leave after losing the brakes and go long in a curve hitting the porexpan pylons and making them fly over his car.

But on the twentieth lap the Grand Prix has started to go crazy. Kevin Magnussen (Haas) left the race due to problems with his car and had to leave it on the grass on one side of the track, right at the entrance of the pit lane, because he couldn’t get to the box. So that it was safe to remove the car, the safety car has entered the track and Michael Masi, director of the race, has decided to close access to the pit lane – a fact that forbids riders to change tires. Hamilton, who led the race, has pitted without realizing that the pit lane it was closed, as was Antonio Giovinazzi. And, while the performance of the two drivers was under investigation and to continue with Ferrari’s misfortune in this World Championship, Charles Leclerc has lost control of the car and crashed into the tire protection wall. The race management has decided to wave first the yellow flag and then the red one to stop the race and force all the drivers to return to the pit lane. In this stopping process, the sanction has been announced for Hamilton – who was still first – and for Giovinazzi: a 10-second stop during the race.

It took Hamilton a thousandth of a second to get out of the Mercedes when they were all stopped and, with his scooter, he went straight to the entrance to the pit area to check that there was no light signal that he was not he could enter. On checking this he went to speak personally with the race management to ask for explanations, but nothing has changed and the Briton has been forced to stop as soon as the race has resumed, so he has left. the last on the asphalt.

The second part of the race has been a sprint

The comeback of the Mercedes driver – Hamilton has finally finished seventh – would have been the biggest attraction of the second part of the race if not for Carlos Sainz. The Madrid man, after overtaking Lance Stroll, has put in the spotlight Pierre Gasly, who at that time was first, more than four seconds away. Round by round, sector by sector, he has been cutting space and time to, in the last lap, be less than a second from Gasly and be able to use the DRS. Despite a couple of attempts, Sainz got dark and Gasly ended up crossing the finish line in first place. “It’s to start crying,” Sainz said on the radio at the end. “One more time, one more time and I would have had it.” Lance Stroll took third place on the podium, equaling his best result in Formula 1.

Gasly has achieved his first Formula 1 race, in addition to making history for his team. Since 2008, Alphatauri – then known as Toro Rosso – has not climbed to the top of the podium. Despite the Frenchman’s victory, the big winner of the race has been Carlos Sainz, who has proven to have great driving and has been reaffirmed as Ferrari’s star signing to lead Cavallino Rampante’s car next season.

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