Ahead of Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix at Monza, there’s one good news for Formula One fans all over the world.
Formula 1 have secured the future of Monza GP until at least the end of 2024. The news was announced at an event held in Milan on Wednesday to celebrate the race’s 90th anniversary.
The iconic race track, which first held the Italian Grand Prix in 1921, has held 68 world championship races, more than any other.
With the return of Dutch Grand Prix and the addition of a new race in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi, there will be a record 22-race season the following year.
But all eyes will be on Monza this Sunday and particularly on Ferrari. Monza has been a happy hunting ground for Ferrari over the years, where Ferrari legend Michael Schumacher won the GP five times in his career – 1996, 1998, 2000, 2003 and 2006.
With eight races remaining, can Sebastian Vettel or Charles Leclerc stage a dramatic comeback to snatch the driver’s title from the Mercedes duo?
It seems difficult at the moment. Lewis Hamilton is leading the race at 268 points, and his fellow teammate Valtteri Bottas is at second with 203 points. Vettel is some 99 points short of Hamilton in fourth, while Leclerc, who won the Belgium Grand Prix, is at fifth with 157 points.
Things can change dramatically, though, especially if Ferrari can win six to seven out of the last eight races. But it is easier said than done.
Both Hamilton and Bottas have been outstanding this season, especially the five-times world champion.
Hamilton have won eight races already this season, including four races on the trot since Bottas won the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. He completely dominated the European circuit winning races at Spain, Monaco, France GP, Silverstone, and Hungary.
While Bottas has won only two races thus far – Australia and Azerbaijan – what he has done best is keeping the gap tight with Hamilton. As a result, he has placed himself in a very good position of winning the Championship.
Also, Mercedes have dominated the Asian circuit so far winning races at Bahrain, China, and Azerbaijan (Eurasia), and Australia (Asia-pacific). With races to follow at Singapore, Japan, and Abu Dhabi – Mercedes can expect to keep their good form going.
At this moment, it looks a nail-biting title race between both the Mercedes drivers, but whether Ferrari can stage a late comeback remains to be seen. Also, there is Red Bull Honda and Max Verstappen, who can cause an upset.
Has Ferrari left it too late? Or is there still time to shift the wheel of fortune? The next three races could very well decide the outcome of the season, starting with Monza.