2008 Italian Grand Prix predictions

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Wet and cool conditions are expected at Monza - which should suit McLaren
Wet and cool conditions are expected at Monza - which should suit McLaren

The expectation of wet weather at this weekend?s Italian Grand Prix makes the result harder to predict.

Where we might have expected the usual Ferrari-McLaren battle at the front, the likes of Robert Kubica and Fernando Alonso will be rubbing their hands with glee in anticipation of precipitation.

Find out who did best with the Spa predictions and make your guesses for the top three below…

Wet weather expected

The one thing you can say with confidence about wet weather is that it?s better news for McLaren than it is for Ferrari.

Ferrari had a dismal race at Silverstone in the wet with both their drivers suffering a lot of spins. We have seen plenty of evidence this year that the F2008 struggles to heat up its tyres in cool weather.

Wet weather racing is Felipe Massa?s Achilles Heel and it was clear in the damp early stages of last week?s race that Raikkonen?s natural feel in these conditions is superior.

In the past year and a half Lewis Hamilton has won in the wet at Fuji, Monaco and Silverstone. He was first ??on the road? in Spa at the weekend and led much of the Chinese Grand Prix last year before that notorious pit blunder. On that form, he?s got to be favourite if it rains.

But wet weather can also reduce the performance advantage of the leading teams which is good news for the likes of Robert Kubica (BMW) and Fernando Alonso (Renault).

Monza marks one year since Alonso?s last Grand Prix victory, though that might have been different had he pitted a lap earlier at Spa. Alonso?s skill in the wet is tremendous ?ǣ think back to his virtuoso performance on the first lap at Hungary in 2006. With all kinds of rumours about his future a surprise podium or win would be a timely reminder of those skills.

Kubica was hugely impressive in the wet at Monaco this year. While Massa spun and Hamilton clipped the barrier, Kubica was fast and error-free. With Raikkonen not scoring in the drivers? championship Kubica has moved up to third and is exhorting BMW to keep the pressure on McLaren and Ferrari. A win at Monza would certainly make everyone take his championship credentials seriously ?ǣ else BMW risk losing him to Ferrari.

Read more about the weather forecast for the Italian Grand Prix

Predictions

Wet races are particularly difficult to predict ?ǣ that?s what makes them so entertaining! Monza is the quickest track on the calendar and one where the teams have virtually no experience of wet weather running. And even wet weather greats made mistakes in the rain (Ayrton Senna, Australia ?89 and Michael Schumacher, Monaco ??96).

All that taken into account, and assuming it rains, here?s my podium prediction:

1. Lewis Hamilton
2. Robert Kubica
3. Kimi Raikkonen

No-one managed to get the top three entirely right at but Sush, Alex-Ctba, Graham228221, Todd and Kavana all managed to name first (Massa) and third (Hamilton) correctly. I only managed to predict Massa’s win correctly…

What do you think will be the top three at Monza? Share your top-three predictions below.

Follow the weather forecast for this weekend on the F1 Fanatic Forum: 2008 Italian Grand Prix weather watch

The comments below have been split across multiple pages. If you are having trouble viewing all the comments click here to see them all.