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Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Brawn boys are back

Barrichello leads Brawn sweep at Monza

After weeks of watching its dominant lead evaporate, Brawn GP put things back on track at Monza with Rubens Barrichello and Jenson Button delivering a 1-2 at the Italian Grand Prix.

F1 Grand Prix of Italy - Race

The race ended in dramatic fashion, with Lewis Hamilton crashing on the last lap in hot pursuit of Button.

Hamilton led from the start in his lightly-fueled McLaren, with Kimi Raikkonen slipping past Adrian Sutil. But the biggest move at the start was that of the Brawns, both on one-stop strategies, slotting into fourth and fifth.

Hamilton was in early, on lap 15, Sutil and Raikkonen soon followed, leaving the one-stoppers in prime position to make up ground. When the Brawns came in on lap 28 and 29, they took off after Hamilton, Raikkonen and Sutil, who would have to all come in for a second stop.

Hamilton pitted again on lap 34, and was passed by both Brawns.

Hamilton, now third, pressed in the remaining laps, eating into the gap. That was when, on the last lap, the world champion lost it in the second Lesmo, spinning into the wall and dispatching the safety car due to the debris field.

That handed third to Raikkonen, as the order was locked down when the safety car appeared. Sutil, who had not given up all day, settled for fourth.

Barrichello’s second victory of the season eats into Button’s championship lead by two more points, he trails his teammate by 14 with four races yet to run.

It was a bigger day for Brawn GP in the constructors, Sebastian Vettel scoring just one point for eighth in his Red Bull. Mark Webber was shunted out on the first lap by Robert Kubica. Brawn 146, Red Bull 105.5, for those scoring at home.

Other retirements included Kubica, Jaime Alguersuari and Vitantonio Liuzzi. It was a shame for Liuzzi, who was putting in a brilliant drive in the second Force India before succumbing to mechanical problems.

Belgian Grand Prix hero Giancarlo Fisichella finished ninth in his Ferrari race debut.

Red Bull now need to regroup by the next meeting in two week’s time in Singapore. While it is still possible for Vettel, Webber and the team to challenge for the titles, the odds are getting long.

Italian Grand Prix (53 laps)
  1. Rubens Barrichello, Brawn-Mercedes
  2. Jenson Button, Brawn-Mercedes
  3. Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari
  4. Adrian Sutil, Force India-Mercedes
  5. Fernando Alonso, Renault
  6. Heikki Kovalainen, McLaren-Mercedes
  7. Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber
  8. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull - Renault
  9. Giancarlo Fisichella, Ferrari
  10. Kazuki Nakajima, Williams - Toyota
  11. Timo Glock, Toyota
  12. Lewis Hamilton, McLaren - Mercedes, 1 lap
  13. Sebastien Buemi, Toro Rosso - Ferrari, 1 lap
  14. Jarno Trulli, Toyota, 1 lap
  15. Romain Grosjean, Renault, 1 lap
  16. Nico Rosberg, Williams - Toyota, 2 laps
  • Vitantonio Liuzzi, Force India-Mercedes, 31 laps
  • Jaime Alguersuari, Toro Rosso - Ferrari, 34 laps
  • Robert Kubica , BMW Sauber, 37 laps
  • Mark Webber, Red Bull - Renault, 53 laps (accident)

H├╝lkenberg takes GP2 title

Needing one point going into the sprint race, Nico H├╝lkenberg locked up the GP2 title over Vitaly Petrov by taking third at Monza.

Luiz Razia took his first win ahead of Lucas di Grassi.

Giedo van der Garde won Saturday's feature race. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six


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