Italian GP: Minardi’s maiden win

There was an interesting question for Mario Theissen as BMW’s motorsport director emerged from the pits at Monza. Rather than ask for a comment on Kubica’s well-executed third place, a journalist wanted to know if Theissen had any regrets about letting Sebastian Vettel go.

Before Toro Rosso got hold of Vettel, BMW had been brave enough to give the young German his opening in F1 at Indianapolis in 2007.

It was a fair question which received the anticipated politically correct reply about being the right decision under the circumstances. But you can bet Theissen might just wonder about what, so far, has been the only questionable move in an otherwise faultless F1 campaign by the German manufacturer.

You also sense an air of bemusement as Dietrich Mateschitz made his way towards the podium. Here’s the man who is pumping millions into Red Bull Racing and it’s the ‘B Team’, the former Minardi outfit he had been ‘persuaded’ to purchase by Bernie Ecclestone, which has been the first to win. And win handsomely.

Okay, Toro Rosso doesn’t have the massive development and build programme taken on by Red Bull Racing. But you could read his thoughts: ‘How come a team of less than 170 people can achieve this?’

It was a question many people were asking. Vettel was unchallenged. Many of us expected him to make the most of a clear track in the rainy opening phase but it was assumed that the big players would come through as Vettel made an early stop.

In the event, no one got near him. It was an incredibly mature performance that the 21-year-old could hardly take on board as he sat beaming before the media for the second day in succession.

‘That slowing down lap was the best lap I ever did at Monza – not the fastest but the best,’ said Vettel. ‘The last part of the race was unbelievable. I kept seeing P1, P1, P1 on my board, with the gap to Heikki (Kovalainen) not getting smaller. I thought “F***! If you keep this up, you’ll be winning.” Sorry about putting it that way – but that’s what I thought!

‘I knew I had to keep up my concentration. It was so easy to overshoot under braking because it was so slippery off line. So I just pushed all the way. Okay, the conditions weren’t easy. You could not see a thing when there was traffic and you just look left and right and then you see the 200 metre board and you know it’s time to brake.

‘It seems amazing to say this, but this is probably the most trouble-free race I’ve ever done. I was able to concentrate on my car and my driving. I had a lot of fun, from the first lap until the last lap.’

By the way, Toro Rosso is still for sale. Interested parties contact Mr. Mateschitz, the bewildered guy in the Monza paddock. Think the price might just have gone up.

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Bruce, you just made my day. i 100% agree that Vettel’s win was historic compared to others in the best car on the grid and certainly letting this years championship slip through their fingers. Vettel deserves to be at the front page and haven’t we had enough of the ‘whinger Lewis’. He’ll end up like Montoya, at least Montoya’s pace was electrifying in a Williams BMW (2nd best car then).

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After Watching the race at monza, and being lucky enough to walk around the old banking and race thge track, it appears f1 just isn’t what it used to be, were technology was at the cutting edge, now it seems to be goverened by rules, you can overtake, you can’t overtake, no aerodynamic aids in 2009,
single tyre manufacturer. Why not watch A1GP as that is what they are already doing, a single make formula with one tyre manufacturer, but with less rules were real racing occurs.

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F1Yankee, that’s very sad to hear. But isn’t there a minimum number of teams that have to compete for something? So teams like Super Aguri and Toro Rosso ‘have’ to join just to fill the numbers?

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Great race for Vettel, hopefully first of many more co come.
But, I wanted to point out something other – Louis pushing other drivers (not Kimi, to be honest) from the track! Am I the only one to have noticed that?!

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Yea, Lewis plays is really ugly when overtaking, like that toyota, Lewis pushed it to grass!

Im waiting the day, when someone wont give room, when someone desides to keep hes own lane. (Coulthard, Coulthard!)

Rags for Lewis, Riches for Der Seb!

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@Milos: no you weren’t the only one, but you call it dirty racing, while other would call it “defensive” driving… in all 3 cases Hamilton was in front of the other car, so he has the right to defend his position, but to do it in such a dangerous way? :/

I wouldn’t bring it up to much though, cause Hamilton fans will immeaditly bring up Spa again, saying that Kimi forced Lewis of the track :/

Imo, Hamilton indeed defended his position by closing any gap trough which the other car could pass him… so all in all it seemed like legit manouveres ;) (which the FIA agrees with apparently, else they would have investigated it)

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simon, the reason Hamilton’s picture was on the homepage is because when I set that up on Friday I took a punt that he was most likely to win in the predicted wet conditions for Sunday’s race.

Oh how wrong I was!

Anyway, I didn’t have access to the CMS over the weekend but now I have I’ve changed it for Mr V because, as you say, he deserves the credit.


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I think thats final proof that Vettel is a bigger talent than Hamilton is in all honesty.

Hamilton has had the best car for two years and has won races with it. Vettel has had the underdog car for a year and he’s won with that. Could Hamilton do that? I’m not sure

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I would like to expand on your comment Julian.

It is proof that Vettel has the skill to be a great driver.

It also proves that a lessor team can win a race with a good strategy. Of course you need a good driver. But we can not forget that STR had 2 drivers qualify P1 and P4. Which to me says that they had the right strategy for the conditions of the weekend.

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TO F1Yankee: I agree Vettel deserved his win and that’s because he has more luck than the other drivers and also his racing ability is not to be doubted. But as a potential future F1 world champion based on that first win of his? I doubt it!

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why do you doubt it? what else promising do you see for the years to come other than Vettel and Hamilton?

the two wonderkids will no doubt be the main contenders for titles in the not-so-distant future(that is, when Vettel gets some more experience and transfers to one of the top teams)

anyone at Ferrari wondering whether resigning Massa until 2010 wasn t such a good move after all???

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rrmmd, I think that he is a potential future world champion not because he won a race, but because of the manner in which he won it.

He drove an extremely competent, mature race and made no mistakes in the worst conditions imaginable.

That sort of wise head on very young shoulders surely marks him out as a future superstar no?

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yeah the kid has potential, but we have no idea yet on how well he can perform under pressure… Hamilton has the same kind of potential, but we have seen him crack under the presure aswell last year. So I wouldn’t place any bets yet on whether Vettel is a future world champion…

and like I said before, imo, Vettel shouldn’t go after the title yet.. right now the most important thing for him is to enjoy and gain experience(keep in mind that Vettel only finished about half of the races this year), and then in a year or 3 he will be far better prepared to go after that title and will also be more capable of with standing the pressure that comes with it ;)

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I’m glad Hamilton didnt lose out on the championship and was able to hold out. He drove amazingly, but I’m pleased for Vettel, much as he’s usually nothing special. It was a great race though, really good to watch.

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Well done Vettel!
But what bits of Toro Rosso is still Minardi? James ‘I’m really not funny’ Allen kept on telling us they were Minardi, but not what had carried over.

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apologies for straying from the topic, but: en/headlines/news/detail/ 080915141257.shtml

Rivals unhappy with Hamilton’s driving

“I do not know what he was thinking. I was right next to him but he left me no room. Sometimes he drives as though he is completely alone on the track,” the German is quoted as saying by RTL.

“The next time I am with him (on track), I will behave with him in exactly the same way,” Glock promised.

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Well done to Vettel, a well deserved victory. Hopefully the first of many for such a talented, young driver.

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@ Catersam: Torro Rosso’s crew consists out of 80% of the old Minardi crew… Basicly Red Bull bought Minardi changed the name and then sponsored it to act as daughter team ;)

Also Torro Rosso is pretty much the smallest team on the grid, with a total (and by that they mean EVERYONE) crew of about a 170 people…
Ferrari and Mclaren probably have about ten times that many people…

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Vettel, scary in a nice way. 100% in control, driving with a dry setup in the wet. Wellcome, looking forward to the next… well, 16 years??

Massa, good for you, not fantastic, a mean scoring machine…

Hamilton, well, nothing, behind Massa in the wet… I agree with the unhappy drivers, he just keeps going all over the place. Of course he’s damn fast, but he’s not exiting, just irritating.

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What if it was Nakajima or a Force India driver who won instead of Vettel? Are you guys going to heap praises for him like you did to Vettel? When Hamilton won his first race he also got a lot of praises and comparisons to former F1 greats. But now look at what kind of comments he is getting from guys like you! My point is please post comments that are intelligent, realistic, and not tainted with racism, favoritism/bias.

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RRMMD… excuse me. i have thought that Vettel is a good driver since the start of the season practically. his drives have been fairly impressive and he dose look like a future prospect.
i do think that Scuderia Ferrari should get him because he has shown he can drive well and i think that with a car, not 4 wheels (compared to the rest of the field) he can win a fair few world championships and can be the real successor to a certain M.S.
Kimi and Vettel would be a great sight. and i have never liked Hamilton, i dont understand how anyone ever could be so full of them selves.

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Bruce: Just be very analytal about all the circumstances concerned and throw out all biases/favoritism for or against any team or driver and you’ll see what I meant!

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Hey guys, I’m not questioning Vettel’s driving ability nor the merits of his winning the race at Monza, nor am I questioning the driving abilities and the potential to become world champion of all the other F1 drivers. Its just that most comnments posted here are over-reacting, too personal, or as they say in boxing – “hitting below the belt”, and highly biased.

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Hey guys, I’m not questioning Vettel’s driving ability nor the merits of his winning the race at Monza, nor am I questioning the driving ability and potential to become world champion of all the other F1 drivers. It’s just that most of the comments posted here are over-reacting, too personal, or as they say in boxing: “hittihg below the belt”, and too biased.

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why has stigs identity been revealed? :(

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