Formula 1: Italian Grand Prix
The fitness of Kevin Magnussen has obviously been the chief concern this week following his big smash in the Ardennes, but the news from the man himself is positive.
It was a big crash and I was sore but, fortunately, I had nothing worse than a bruised ankle. I had some more checks in Denmark and I’ve been working with my physio, so I feel I’m ready for Monza. The FIA will have the final word, of course, but I really want to race and I am confident that it will be fine.
Kevin’s attention is already turned to this weekend’s grand prix and he is delighted to be back at Monza where it is expected he will have his spare chassis.
This hasn’t been the best track for me in the past but you’re sure to find one of the most incredible atmospheres of the season here.
The electric ambience in the Italian circuit’s grandstands is due to the passion that famously drives the celebrated tifosi.
It’s a very special track and one I absolutely love. There is so much history at Monza, and there’s also the passion of the crowd – you can actually hear the fans from inside the car. It’s an old-school track and great fun to drive.
Monza has hosted grand prix racing since 1921 and is acclaimed as a temple of speed. As a challenge it is always eagerly awaited, as well, despite being held in awe at the same time.
It’s a special track, like nowhere else we visit over the season. There are four long straights, so we need to run the lowest wing level of the year to be able to reach the highest speeds we can. Yet you still need to make sure the car has good balance with a low level of downforce. There are some very hard braking points and you have a lot less wing to be able to slow the car down. It can be tricky to find the right balance between speed and grip. Good traction out of the chicanes and getting up to speed quickly down the next straight are key to good lap times.
Nick Chester, Technical Director of the Team
It is at the Italian venue, which is situated in parkland on the outskirts of Milan, that the drivers reach the highest speeds of the season, so it’s definitely a place where bravery plays a big role in the equation. The first part of Lesmo is taken at 260kph and the cars peak at 335kph before braking for the infamous Parabolica turn which continues to stand out as one of the season’s highlights.
Monza is the most power-sensitive track of the season, too. More than 70 percent of the lap is spent at full throttle, more than at any other circuit of the season. Even so, energy consumption is relatively low compared to slower tracks because speeds are reasonably consistent over a complete lap. That doesn’t count the chicanes, of course, where the drivers brake from more than 300kph to 80kph!