2021 Italian Grand Prix Predictions: Can Ferrari Claim Another Monza Win Amidst Ongoing Hamilton-Verstappen F1 Rivalry?

Published 09/08/2021, 5:05 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Dutch Grand Prix – Circuit Zandvoort, Zandvoort, Netherlands – September 3, 2021 Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in action during practice REUTERS/Benoit Tessier


After an electric comeback race weekend at Zandvoort, the next Grand Prix in line is at one of the fastest F1 circuits on the racing calendar- Monza. The 2020 Italian Grand Prix was arguably the most unpredictable race of that season, with Pierre Gasly, Carlos Sainz, and Lance Stroll ruling the podium.

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Meanwhile, there was Lewis Hamilton at the back of the grid, Valtteri Bottas struggling with damages, and Max Verstappen in the garage. Hence, after delivering an ecstatic race in 2, what does Monza have in store for us this time around?

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Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton

After trailing for a brief stint, Verstappen is back at the top of the table. The incidents at Silverstone and Hungaroring meant that Verstappen’s steadily built lead faded, with Hamilton consequently superseding the Dutchman.

Of course, Verstappen has fought back since the end of the summer break. Nevertheless, the difference is just 3 points at the moment, and the title fight could swing both ways.

Formula One F1 – Dutch Grand Prix – Circuit Zandvoort, Zandvoort, Netherlands – September 5, 2021 Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates with Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton on the podium with champagne after winning the race Pool via REUTERS/Francisco Seco

Coming to Monza, the 7-time world champion will be wary of the blistering Red Bull pace, and the odds are that Verstappen will win the Italian GP. The Milton Keynes outfit have looked very strong over high-speed circuits this season, including Baku, Bahrain, and Austria.

Hence, the trend could very much continue in Italy as well.

Can Ferrari F1 deliver in front of the Tifosi?

Charles Leclerc gave a celebratory end to the 2019 Italian Grand Prix by winning with a Ferrari. Since then, Ferrari haven’t had a good run, both at Monza and Imola. However, the present Ferrari duo could well end the dry spell for the team this weekend.

Formula One F1 – Steiermark Grand Prix – Red Bull Ring, Styria, Austria – June 25, 2021 Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz Jr. and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in action during practice REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger

Ferrari’s pace has improved significantly amidst strong showings at Spa and Zandvoort. Hence, with massive straights at Monza, there are strong possibilities that either Sainz or Leclerc could recreate the Silverstone success.

Also, with McLaren starting to struggle, the pressure is progressively being relieved for Ferrari. So, this is the perfect time for the Italian outfit to step up.

Williams F1 to fight against the mid-field?

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Williams have been quite impressive at Monza irrespective of their form. In 2017, Lance Stroll missed an F1 pole by a whisker. And just 3 years later in 2020, despite the evident struggles, Nicholas Latifi almost managed to secure his first points for Williams.

Formula One F1 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps, Spa, Belgium – August 28, 2021 Williams’ George Russell celebrates after qualifying second Pool via REUTERS/John Thys

Now, over the past few races, the Williams duo have been on a roll, securing 20 points out of Hungary and Belgium. Hence, another double-point finish is on cards for George Russell and Latifi at Monza this weekend.

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Overall, there are lots to look forward to at the Italian GP this weekend. However, the biggest question is, who is going to claim the victory? Will this year manage to place yet another improbable driver at the top step? We’ll know soon enough.

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Rohit Kumar

1177 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

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