Fernando Alonso took revenge for the pain of his 2006 Italian Grand Prix. He dominated qualifying for the race and seized pole position.
Team mate Lewis Hamilton will join him on the front row of the grid as the McLaren pair delivered a stringing blow to Ferrari at the Scuderia’s home track.
Felipe Massa fell to third and Kimi Raikkonen will start fifth behind Nick Heidfeld following his high speed crash in practice.
There were a few surprise named knocked out at the end of the first part of qualifying.
One of them was David Coulthard, who spun his Red Bull to a halt at the first turn.
Another was Toyota’s Ralf Schumacher, who was one of a number of drivers whose finals runs were compromised by Coulthard’s spin.
The Spykers will start from the back of the grid. Sakon Yamamoto ran wide at the first turn on his first lap out of the pits, then did a more comprehensive job later on, swiping off the front nose of the car.
Kimi Raikkonen did a string of early laps and seemed to show no ill effects of his earlier crash.
Anthony Davidson was one of few drivers to escape the clutches of the bottom six, bumping Vitantonio Liuzzi into the drop zone in the dying minutes of the session.
Drivers eliminated in part one
17. Takuma Sato
18. Ralf Schumacher
19. Vitantonio Liuzzi
20. David Coulthard
21. Adrian Sutil
22. Sakon Yamamoto
The Monza circuit continues to rubber in and most drivers posted lap times several tenths of a second quicker than their earlier efforts. Ahead of all of them was Fernando Alonso, four tenths quicker than team mate Lewis Hamilton.
The Honda drivers had mixed fortunes – Rubens Barrichello was accused of blocking Giancarlo Fisichella, but Jenson Button made it into the final eight for the first time since the Monaco Grand Prix.
Barrichello’s delay cost Fisichella dear – he languished in 15th, with team mate Heikki Kovalainen once again making it through to the final ten.
Drivers eliminated in part two
11. Mark Webber
12. Rubens Barrichello
13. Alexander Wurz
14. Anthony Davidson
15. Giancarlo Fisichella
16. Sebastian Vettel
The McLarens, Ferraris and BMWs made it through to the final part of qualifying as usual, and this time they were joined by Kovalainen’s Renault, Button’s Honda, Nico Rosberg’s Williams and Jarno Trulli’s Toyota.
The team bosses may be trying to get rid of the ‘fuel burn’ phase, but it’s still with us, and the drivers did the usual string of pointless extra laps before getting their quick ones underway.
Hamilton led the field around but his first time was soon eclipsed by a far quicker effort from Alonso.
In fact Alonso’s time was so quick that Hamilton couldn’t better it even with his second effort. The Spanish driver was able to cut his final effort short and cruise home, saving precious extra drops of fuel.
The Ferraris never looked like challenging for the front row and fell victim to the BMWs. Massa held onto third but Nick Heidfeld will start alongside him, with Raikkonen bumped back to fifth.
Top ten drivers in part three
1. Fernando Alonso
2. Lewis Hamilton
3. Felipe Massa
4. Nick Heidfeld
5. Kimi Raikkonen
6. Robert Kubica
7. Heikki Kovalainen
8. Nico Rosberg
9. Jarno Trulli
10. Jenson Button