The three championship rivals had varying fortunes in the mixed weather at Monza. At one time or another each was substantially faster than the other.
Here’s a look at how their lap times compared during the Italian Grand Prix:
Kimi Raikkonen, Felipe Massa and Lewis Hamilton lap times
The important thing to remember when looking at this graph is that the gap between each line is one second. So the swings in performance between each of the drivers were quite large.
Lewis Hamilton’s lap times suddenly improved once he got past Raikkonen, but what was particularly impressive was he kept his lap times very quick despite having to pass cars on several laps.
Massa’s lap times improved considerably after he hit clean air having passed Nico Rosberg on lap 15. Massa’s pit stop on lap 22 coincided with Hamilton getting his first proper clear laps in prior to his stop on lap 27.
Through all of this Raikkonen was oddly quiet. He began putting in some quick laps after his first pit stop but it wasn’t until he switched from extreme wets to standard wets that he really sped up.
Over the final laps he was taking up to two seconds per lap off Massa and Hamilton, who were running nose to tail. Just as at Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps, Raikkonen seemed to thrive when the track was moving from damp to dry conditions.
Here’s two graphs showing how the gap from Raikkonen to Massa and Hamilton fluctuated:
Italian Grand Prix: Gap between Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa
Italian Grand Prix: Gap between Kimi Raikkonen and Lewis Hamilton
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