Italian Grand Prix qualifying as it happened

Text and video highlights of Italian Grand Prix qualifying as Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel takes pole.

11 September 2013 Last updated at 07:28

Get involved

To get involved contact us in any of the following ways

  • Send us a text: 81111
  • Twitter:#bbcf1

As it happened

  1. 1520: 
    Fans in Italy

    There'll be quite some rousing speech from president Luca Di Montezemolo in the Ferrari motorhome this evening, I suspect, as Ferrari look to turn the tables on Red Bull to satisfy their loyal supporters.

    Ferrari are always better on race day, so there remains a glimmer of hope for the tifosi - but it'll be quite something if Fernando Alonso or Felipe Massa manage to tame the front row-starting Red Bulls and climb aboard the top step. Until tomorrow, it's good afternoon from me.

  2. 1515: 

    I'll be back at 1130 BST to begin building up to the Italian Grand Prix, round 12 of the Formula 1 World Championship. The TV programme will hit your screens on BBC One and BBC One HD at 1210, with BBC Radio 5 live joining the fray just ahead of the start at 1300.

    Allan McNish, BBC Radio 5 live analyst and ex-F1 driver

    "Well Red Bull certainly got qualifying sewn up with a dominant VET WEB. But star of quali for me was Hulkenberg, 5th in Q2 and 3rd in Q3!"

  4. 1510: 

    Here's Andrew Benson's qualifying report, with analysis on Lewis Hamilton from David Coulthard and Gary Anderson. Keep an eye on the F1 pages throughout the afternoon as we'll have all the latest from the Monza paddock, including what is said in the Fernando Alonso media sessions.

  5. 1505: 

    Here's Red Bull-bound Daniel Ricciardo, who finished seventh fastest: "I think it was quite good for us to have cars in Q3 and pretty happy with that. We have to be happy with top seven and did the best we could today."

  6. 1458: 
    Kimi Raikkonen

    Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen, whose title challenge is falling apart, was typically short and sweet about finishing down in 11th in qualifying. "We just didn't have the speed, it's as simple as that."


    Anthony Bubb: Fantastic lap from @NicoHulkenberg to get 3rd. It looks like he can have a solid race tomorrow and hopefully beat a Ferrari.

  8. 1453: 

    Mercedes are remaining positive ahead of tomorrow's race, with Lewis Hamilton starting down in 12th. "Remember, the man who started P12 last year ended the race on the podium. And there's rain in them there mountains, too," they tweeted.

  9. 1447: 

    It'll be interesting to hear what Fernando Alonso has to say in his media interviews later on. Let's not forget the chief - Luca Di Montezemolo - is in attendance today as well. Oh to be a fly on the wall in the debrief.

  10. 1442: 

    Thanks to my colleague Cassandra Cavallaro for translating a piece in La Gazzetta dello Sport which reportsFernando Alonso's angry shouts over the team radio: "You're really idiots. Mamma mia guys." He previously yelled: "Massa is too far away!" The newspaper notes that some heard Alonso to use the word "geniuses", ironically, rather than idiots.

    Fernando Alonso

    Ferrari's Fernando Alonso: A good qualy finally after the last Saturdays so so... Tomorrow we must try to be close to Red Bull in the first part of the race.

    There could be a hint of sarcasm in that tweet but the fact is, Alonso and Massa qualified ninth and 10th at Spa. In Monza, Massa was fourth, one place ahead of Alonso - so it is better - but how much better could it have been?

  12. 1435: 

    For those of you who like stats, it was Red Bull's 50th pole position and Sebastian Vettel's 40th.


    More from pole-sitter Sebastian Vettel: "I'm very happy obviously; it was a scary performance yesterday. We didn't expect to be so strong here with both cars on front row. A lot of hard work, we did our homework. This circuit has been up and down for us - more up this year - so let's see what we can do tomorrow."


    Tom: I think Alonso needs to read Dale Carnagie's classic tome "How to win friends and influence people".


    McLaren's Jenson Button, who starts ninth: "I think we proved how fast the car will go. It's a pity really. If we hadn't run [in Q3], it would have made our options a bit more open tomorrow. It's always a fun Turn One here, I'm looking forward to tomorrow."

  16. 1427: 

    Both McLarens made it into Q3, but they could only manage eighth and ninth, with Sergio Perez heading Jenson Button.


    Felipe Massa, who finished fourth: "I lost a little bit on the Ascari, just too excited for the lap. I don't know if it would have been possible to be third, but it was a good lap, I tried to get everything out of the car. Tomorrow is the race and let's concentrate on doing the best job. We know the cars in front are quick, but it would be fantastic to do a great race for the fans. He's fighting for the championship, I'm not fighting, I'll do whatever is important for the team."

    Eddie Jordan, BBC F1 chief analyst

    "Fernando's not a happy boy. We could be watching something unfold here that we were not expecting. Certain journalists believe he could be looking for a sabbatical."

  19. 1424: 

    Ferrari's Fernando Alonso will be disappointed with fifth, especially as it's one place behind his team-mate Felipe Massa. The Spaniard's final lap was really ragged, something clearly upset him, and there are rumours that he was quite scathing in his opinions over the radio.


    Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn: "We couldn't believe it ourselves. This is fantastic. Nico said it himself, it was the perfect lap. I think he did a great job. It's very important because it gives us the boost we need. We have to keep in mind this is just qualifying. I hope we can take this forward and get a good result tomorrow."

  21. 1422: 
    Nico Hulkenberg

    Nico Hulkenberg. What. A. Lap. Comfortably the driver of the day in my view. Do you agree? Tweet us using the #bbcf1 hashtag or text 81111 (UK only).


    Nico Hulkenberg, who will start third, was asked where that brilliant lap came from: "I don't know either. A really a nice surprise, I didn't expect it especially after a very difficult Friday. The guys have done a fantastic job to turn the car around."


    Mark Webber, who starts second: "I said to the boys I was looking for a qualifying PB, it's a nice step towards a good race tomorrow. I got there in the end when it mattered. Seb did a really good lap. It was a bit of a mixed up session and it's usually difficult at Monza. Brazil will be a little more emotional and I'm still enjoying my driving and hopefully will get a few good results in the coming races. I'm not retiring and people can come and see me race at Le Mans next year."


    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel, who starts on pole: "It's a special track. always nice to come back here. My memories of 2008 are great. I had another win in 2011 but your first win is always special. This weekend, the car was fantastic. We had a really strong pace yesterday and we were able to take that into qualifying today. In the end, it's a bit of a surprise to have both cars on front row at a place historically we've had bad years. This year seems to work well and hopefully we'll have a good race tomorrow. We're able to match other cars down the straight and we know in corners, we have a strong car."

  25. 1412: 

    Time to hear from the top three, where to the Tifosi's disappointment, there are no Ferrari drivers present...

  26. 1410: 

    1) Vettel 2) Webber 3) Hulkenberg 4) Massa 5) Alonso 6) Rosberg 7) Ricciardo 8) Perez 9) Button 10) Vergne

    11) Raikkonen 12) Hamilton 13) Grosjean 14) Sutil 15) Maldonado 16) Di Resta

    17) Gutierrez 18) Bottas 19) Van der Garde 20) Pic 21) Bianchi 22) Chilton

    Eddie Jordan, BBC F1 chief analyst

    "Nico Hulkenberg was sensational. I'm just wondering what kind of carrot they hung in front of him, I think it might even have been a Ferrari carrot."


    Ross: HULK. Get him in a Ferrari next season.

    Tom: Fernando, Felipe is faster than you.

    Charlie Eustice: WHAT?! WHERE did Nico Hulkenberg come from?! Amazing lap for the #Hulk, congrats @OfficialSF1Team on an amazing second row!

  29. 1405: 

    No surprise there, with Sebastian Vettel taking his fourth pole position. However what is surprising, I may even go as far as saying unbelievable, is that Nico Hulkenberg in the Sauber - whose team has not been any higher than 10th all season - has qualified third. Yes, third. Remarkable. Stonking lap.

  30. 1403: 

    Red Bull team principal Christian Horner: "It was a fantastic team performance, to have both drivers up there on front row. We couldn't have asked for more than that."

  31. 1402: 


  32. 1400: 

    Mark Webber can only manage the second fastest time, and remarkably, Felipe Massa has out-qualified Ferrari team-mate Fernando Alonso. The duo are third and fourth respectively.

    Until Hulkenberg pushes them both down for a brilliant third. Wow. Where did that come from?

  33. 1359: 

    "Felipe's too fast," says Fernando Alonso. Think that's the first time I've ever heard him say that! He's referring to the fact Felipe Massa is supposed to be giving him a tow, but the Brazilian is too far ahead to benefit.

  34. 1356: 

    Daniel Ricciardo has the track to himself with everyone else in their garage. Jenson Button, Jean-Eric Vergne, Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg have yet to set a time.

  35. 1353: 

    Mark Webber is the early pace-setter, clocking a 1:23.990. Meanwhile Ferrari are sticking with their "tow" strategy, with Felipe Massa hauling Fernando Alonso around Monza. Alonso goes second, four tenths off the pace, with Massa further three tenths adrift. It's all academic, though, as Sebastian Vettel saunters to the top of the timesheets. Can't say I wasn't expecting that.

    David Coulthard, BBC F1 co-commentator

    "I think Lewis is being too hard on himself, he's a quality driver and he's had an amazing start to his Mercedes season."

  37. 1352: 

    No back to the job in hand - Formula 1 at Monza. David Coulthard and Gary Anderson believe Lewis Hamilton was being too hard on himself, with Anderson referencing Sergio Perez's strong drive through the field to grab a podium last year as a reason for the Briton not to be too down.

  38. 1351: 

    Away from Monza, I'm told that coming up at 1400 BST, London Irish take on Saracens in the season opener at Twickenham. You can listen live on BBC Radio 5 live and there will be full match reports on the BBC Sport website. You can also follow our Instagram feed for behind the scenes photos.

  39. 1350: 

    A downbeat Lewis Hamilton, who will start 12th: "I just drove like an idiot. That's the worst I've driven for a long, long time. I'm sorry to the team."

    When asked if Adrian Sutil impeded him, Hamilton replied: "Yep, but there's nothing you can do about it. I should have done a lap before that. I just didn't drive well. There's not really much more to say. I was quick in Q1 and then I dunno. I'll do whatever I can from where I am but it's going to be tough."

  40. 1348: 

    1) Vettel 2) Alonso 3) Webber 4) Ricciardo 5) Hulkenberg 6) Rosberg 7) Massa 8) Button 9) Vergne 10) Perez

  41. 1348: 

    That's the first time in 67 races - excluding penalties - that Hamilton has failed to make Q3, according to BBC F1 co-commentator David Coulthard.

    David Coulthard, BBC F1 co-commentator

    "Interestingly, Hamilton was significantly slower than he managed in the practice session, so something has gone wrong."

  43. 1347: 

    11) Raikkonen 12) Hamilton 13) Grosjean 14) Sutil 15) Maldonado 16) Di Resta

  44. 1346: 
    Sebastian Vettel

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel finishes fastest in the second part of qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix.

  45. 1345: 

    Crikey, I didn't expect that. Lewis Hamilton, who has been on pole in the last four races, is out of qualifying. His penultimate lap wasn't good enough and then he got trapped behind a Force India.

  46. 1344: 


  47. 1342: 

    The chequered flag is out but there are so many drivers still out on a lap. I think Lewis Hamilton is going to get the boot, though, because his first sector is very poor.

  48. 1341: 

    Lewis Hamilton is in trouble here. The Mercedes driver goes ninth, with only the top 10 making it through to Q3. The Briton has time for one more lap, but he's just caught a Force India.


    Sebastian Vettel's race engineer Rocky: "Right Sebastian, that's quick enough."

  50. 1340: 

    Mark Webber goes second quickest, a few thousands behind Ferrari's Fernando Alonso with Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo going third fastest. It's all change, though, as Sebastian Vettel dips down into the 1m23s. The man looks unbeatable round here.

  51. 1337: 

    The Red Bulls of Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber head out on a fresh set of medium tyres.

  52. 1335: 

    Tasty lap time for Fernando Alonso who clocks a 1:24.227 to go quickest, half a second clear of Ferrari team-mate Felipe Massa in second.

    Italian GP

    Big moment for Lewis Hamilton as he gets a wheel over the line at Parabolica, which sucks him into the gravel at high speed. The Mercedes bounces across the gravel but Hamilton regains control and keeps it out of the barriers. No sign of the Red Bulls yet.

  53. 1333: 

    Romain Grosjean, who missed this race last year as he was serving his ban for causing an accident at Spa, locks his fronts at the first chicane and bounces across the sleeping policeman. That won't be pleasant for the underside of that Lotus.

  54. 1330: 

    The Toro Rossos are out and about nice and early in Q2. Daniel Ricciardo is the first man to set a time, clocking a 1:24.746 on the medium tyres.

  55. 1328: 

    One session down, two to go...

    Eddie Jordan, BBC F1 chief analyst

    "It's still Vettel for me, he looks so strong."

  57. 1326: 

    1) Vettel 2) Rosberg 3) Hamilton 4) Vergne 5) Perez 6) Ricciardo 7) Alonso 8) Grosjean 9) Button 10) Hulkenberg 11) Raikkonen 12) Maldonado 13) Webber 14) Massa 15) Di Resta 16) Sutil

  58. 1324: 

    17) Gutierrez 18) Bottas 19) Van der Garde 20) Pic 21) Bianchi 22) Chilton

    David Coulthard, BBC F1 co-commentator

    "I don't think we've had it that close at any grand prix this year."

  60. 1323: 

    Just seven tenths separate Sebastian Vettel in first and Paul Di Resta in 15th.

  61. 1322: 
    Italian GP

    Sebastian Vettel finishes fastest in the first part of qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix at Monza.

  62. 1321: 

    Great lap from Pastor Maldonado. The Venezuelan's right on the ragged edge as he exits Parabolica - and it pays off as he goes 12th quickest to make it into Q2. His Williams team-mate Valtteri Bottas can't follow suit, though, and is knocked out. He'll start 18th.

  63. 1320: 

    Esteban Gutierrez scrapes into the top 16, bumping Pastor Maldonado down into the drop zone. Both Williams' in there at the moment. They didn't look too bad in final practice so that'll be frustrating for the Grove-based team if they can't improve.

  64. 1318: 

    Esteban Gutierrez, Valtteri Bottas, Giedo Van Der Garde, Charles Pic, Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton are currently in the drop zone with a couple of minutes remaining.

  65. 1318: 

    Lewis Hamilton goes fastest, but he's quickly displaced by Sebastian Vettel by 0.270 seconds. Jean-Eric Vergne is third in the Toro Rosso, ahead of team-mate Daniel Ricciardo and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso.

  66. 1316: 

    The Hoff is in the house. Yep, David Hasselhoff, who was also at the Monaco Grand Prix, is enjoying qualifying from the Red Bull garage. He's having a good natter with racing legend John Surtees. What a conversation that must be...

  67. 1314: 

    Jenson Button goes P3, 0.150 seconds off the pace in the McLaren. However, the Briton is bumped down a place as Sebastian Vettel goes third quickest.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "If Webber's Kers has failed then that's half a second a lap around here."

    Webber reported that it was getting rather hot on one side of the car. The Australian also had a Kers problem between practice sessions on Friday.

  69. 1312: 

    Lewis Hamilton goes third quickest, two tenths off the leading pace of Jean-Eric Vergne. Meanwhile, Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel has finally left the garage to do his first flying lap of the session.

  70. 1309: 

    Jean-Eric Vergne lights up the timings to go fastest. The Toro Rossos have looked good throughout the practice sessions with Daniel Ricciardo moving into third in the sister car.

  71. 1306: 

    Fernando Alonso goes quickest with a 1:24.938 which should be enough to move him safely into Q2. His Ferrari team-mate Felipe Massa goes fourth, behind Jean-Eric Vergne and Nico Rosberg. Everyone is out on track - apart from championship leader Sebastian Vettel.

    James Allen, BBC Radio 5 live commentator

    "Mercedes told me at lunchtime there's more to come from them this afternoon."

  73. 1304: 

    Esteban Gutierrez sets the early pace with a 1:26.293, 1.3 seconds clear of Nico Rosberg who is running with a lot more fuel. The Ferraris have headed out together. It looks like they're planning to use their "tow" strategy again.

    James Allen, BBC Radio 5 live commentator

    "It's the fastest and one of the most charismatic circuits - Vettel was doing 210mph at points on this lap this morning."

  75. 1302: 

    Mercedes' Nico Rosberg is told that they're planning for an eight-lap run on the harder tyre, pushing on every other lap.

  76. 1300: 

    The roar of a Formula 1 engine - which belongs to Esteban Gutierrez - signals the start of the first part of qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix. Mercedes' Nico Rosberg, who missed much of third practice with an overheating issue, is out early, too, to try and grab that time back.

  77. 1258: 

    Lots of famous faces in the paddock and pit lane today. Former Ferrari driver Jean Alesi, who took his only victory in the 1995 Canadian Grand Prix, is in attendance as is former Renault boss Flavio Briatore.


    Ferrari: Everything is ready for a very interesting qualifying session.

  79. 1255: 

    Ben Edwards is up and running in the commentary box, with David Coulthard alongside, which means we're just five minutes away from the start of qualifying. You've also got the option of James Allen and Allan McNish in the BBC Radio 5 live commentary box.

    Eddie Jordan, BBC F1 chief analyst

    "I think it's Vettel for pole here, with Alonso alongside."

  81. 1250: 

    Just three men have started on pole position this season - Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg. Hamilton is the man in form, having taken pole at the last four races, with five in total. Rosberg and Vettel have had three poles apiece.

  82. 1245: 

    McLaren's Jenson Button: "It's been a difficult year. We're not used to fighting for sixth or seventh. We're getting there. We need that little bit extra. We might have that here."

    Allan McNish, BBC Radio 5 live analyst and ex-F1 driver

    "Track temperature 43C, air is 30C for qualifying. Red Bull, Ferrari or Mercedes for pole? Will be a good lap to overcome Vettel pace."

  84. 1240: 

    Seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher is good form as he chats to Lee McKenzie about Mercedes' rise, the Pirelli tyres which he criticised during his final season in F1, and how he feels about Sebastian Vettel breaking his records. You can watch a snippet of that interview here. and the whole thing a little later on on the BBC F1 homepage.


    David Richardson: Red Bull is all about Vettel. There is no room in the team for another top driver to challenge him, hence appointment of Ricciardo.

    Stewart Forsyth:‏ I think Red Bull are going to regret taking Ricciardo rather than Vergne next year. I think JEV is the far better driver.

    Ben Malone: Di Resta definitely good enough for Ferrari. What I've seen from him in DTM there's untapped talent still to be uncovered in F1.

    Eddie Jordan, BBC F1 chief analyst

    "Ricciardo is a dream ticket in terms of PR, he's so loveable, everyone thinks he's fantastic."

  87. 1235: 
    Daniel Ricciardo

    Every time you see Daniel Ricciardo, he's smiling. And this week, that smile grew even bigger as he was confirmed as a Red Bull driver for next season, racing alongside three-time world champion Sebastian Vettel. And the Australian soaked up the pressure to deliver a great performance in final practice, finishing sixth fastest, half a second off the pace set by Vettel.

  88. 1230: 
    Luca Di Montezemolo

    As if Ferrari weren't under enough pressure to catch Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel, they've got the big chief - president Luca Di Montezemolo - in the house to keep an eye on proceedings.


    Ricky: Monza is just something else on the Motorsport calendar. Not many areas in the world like this.

  90. 1227: 

    As usual, qualifying will be split into the three segments. The first will last 20 minutes and see the six slowest drivers knocked out. Another six will bite the dust in the second 15-minute session, leaving 10 to fight it out for pole in a 10-minute shoot-out.

  91. 1225: 

    And BBC F1's Tom Clarkson confirms that the team are confident Paul Di Resta's Force India will be ready in time for the first part of qualifying.


    Force India: When Paul's VJM06 came back, we were able to establish that the cause of the accident was a failure of the right front brake disc.

  93. 1221: 

    Force India's Paul Di Resta crashed with 20 minutes or so to go in third practice, meaning his mechanics had to work through their lunch to get that car ready for qualifying, which starts at 1300. The race is on already.


    Force India: Getting ready for qualifying - the crew are working hard to fix Paul's car in time for the start of the session.


    Red Bull team principal Christian Horner: "Fernando obviously looks pretty quick. I don't think Lewis has completely shown his hand. Rosberg has had an issue but I'm sure will be there or thereabouts. It's the usual suspects."

    Allan McNish, BBC Radio 5 live analyst and ex-F1 driver

    "Through the high-speed section, the Ascaris, Vettel looked like he was on rails, like the car was easy to drive. He was able to hug the inside kerb whereas the others were sliding a bit wider.

    "Red Bull are looking good but I don't think it's cut and dried. Ferrari are close. Not quite there, but in the ballpark."

  97. 1213: 

    Andrew Priestley is clearly a man whose glass is half empty, whereas I'm more of the glass half full variety. Yes, Sebastian Vettel was on top in final practice. Again. But Fernando Alonso in the Ferrari looked to have closed the gap. And Lewis Hamilton has been a real force in qualifying of late, having taken pole at each of the last four races.


    Andrew Priestley: Vettel is just too far ahead of Alonso & Hamilton at this stage. Even if they start winning races, Seb will always be on the podium.

  99. 1210: 

    It's baking in Monza, the sun is shining with barely a cloud in the sky. Perfect conditions for the fans who engulf this historic place.

  100. 1206: 

    Suzi Perry and the team will hit your screens in four minutes on BBC One, with an opening montage celebrating the great moments at Monza and plenty of commentary from Murray Walker which is guaranteed to give you goosebumps.

  101. 1204: 

    Welcome, one and all, to Monza, home of the Italian Grand Prix located in a royal park and nestled in dense woodland. Only one team matters here - and that's Ferrari, with Italians coming in their thousands, dressed head to toe in red, to hope of a victory for Fernando Alonso or Felipe Massa.

  102. 1200: 

    Hello all, it's the time you've all been waiting for. I've got qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix coming up for you. Lets. Do. This.

  103. 1120: 
    Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso

    I'm off for a quick pit stop and to source some kind of sandwich/soup/pasta for lunch - but I'll be back at 1200 BST to begin building up to qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix. Suzi Perry and the team will hit your screens on BBC One at 1210 with BBC Radio 5 live joining the party from 1300.

    Sebastian Vettel continues to lead the way at Monza, but encouragingly for the tifosi, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso is lurking not too far behind. And we all know how good Lewis Hamilton has been in qualifying of late. What a show we have in store. See you in a bit, folks.

  104. 1115: 

    Here's Andrew Benson's developing third practice report. I'd also recommend Andrew's piece on why the Italian Grand Prix's 'cathedral of speed' has an ambience unmatched by any rival on the F1 calendar and Tom Bowker's video which highlights the magic of Monza.

  105. 1112: 

    Decent showings from Sergio Perez, who is fifth fastest on McLaren's 50th anniversary weekend, Red Bull-bound Daniel Ricciardo, who was just half a second shy of soon-to-be team-mate Sebastian Vettel in sixth, and Pastor Maldonado, who was ninth for Williams.

  106. 1109: 

    Red Bull team principal Christian Horner was asked whether we might see Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber doing what Ferrari were doing in that session and giving each other a tow, he laughed and said: "I think that's unlikely".


    Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn: "Obviously disappointed to lose Nico's car as we had some work to do. We look to have a hydraulic problem which we're investigating. Lewis didn't seem too bad.

    "We're going to have a debrief now. Seb looks a bit special out there, but we're in the group behind. Lewis wasn't complaining about anything too serious so the car doesn't look too bad."

  108. 1106: 

    1) Vettel 2) Alonso 3) Webber 4) Hamilton 5) Perez 6) Ricciardo 7) Massa 8) Button 9) Maldonado 10) Raikkonen 11) Vergne

    12) Hulkenberg 13) Gutierrez 14) Grosjean 15) Bottas 16) Sutil 17) Di Resta 18) Pic 19) Van Der Garde 20) Bianchi 21) Chilton 22) Rosberg

  109. 1102: 

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel once again finds his name at the top of the timesheets, but the gap is just 0.283 seconds to Ferrari's Fernando Alonso. A bit of hope for the Ferrari faithful who have turned out in their thousands at Monza.

  110. 1100: 

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel finishes fastest in third and final practice for the Italian Grand Prix.

  111. 1059: 

    Decent effort from Sergio Perez who goes fifth fastest in the McLaren. Could the team genuinely challenge for their first podium of the season this year?


    Lotus' Romain Grosjean: "There is no grip in the car - no grip."

  113. 1058: 

    Sebastian Vettel eases off on the next lap and then goes for a second flying lap. It pays off as he takes another tenth of a second out of his previous best. Fernando Alonso improves, too, but the gap is now 0.354 seconds. Red Bull-bound Daniel Ricciardo improves, too, going fourth fastest, with Felipe Massa a strong fifth.

  114. 1057: 

    Lewis Hamilton can only manage eighth fastest, 0.675 seconds off the pace, with Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo seventh and Kimi Raikkonen sixth in the Lotus.

  115. 1055: 

    Sebastian Vettel comes out of the final turn Parabolica and goes quicker on a fresh set of soft tyres with a 1:24.478. It's not faster than he managed yesterday, but it's still 0.236 seconds faster than Ferrari's Fernando Alonso with Mark Webber a further tenth further back in third.

  116. 1053: 

    Time for some qualifying-simulation runs, folks. Everyone apart from Nico Rosberg and Paul Di Resta is out and about on track.


    Felipe Massa's race engineer: "Work hard on the front tyres."

  118. 1052: 

    Jenson Button breaks the silence, blasting out onto the track on the hard tyres, after a practice start, in his McLaren.

  119. 1051: 

    Coverage for the Italian GP this weekend is live across the BBC - on TV, radio & online.

    Final practice is on BBC Two and 5 live sports extra now. Qualifying is live on BBC One from 1210 BST, on 5 live at 1300 and online.

    Race coverage on Sunday is on BBC One from 1210, on 5 live at 1300 and here online. The F1 Forum is at 1515 on the Red Button and online.

    TV highlights are on BBC Three at 1900 and on the Red Button.

    And don't forget all the lovely extra camera streams available online during qualifying and the race, including the pit lane feed, driver tracker, on-board, timing screens and alternative commentary.

    For more information on what's available on Red Button, connected TV and alternative camera views, check out the BBC F1 homepage.


    Suzi Perry: ‏"I have a feeling Eddie Jordan's grid walk tomorrow will be special after seeing certain guests in the pit lane ;-) #qualifying 12.10 @BBCOne."

  121. 1049: 

    There's a bit of a lull with everyone back in the garage to prepare for their qualifying-simulation runs to end the session.

  122. 1047: 

    Jenson Button is the leading Brit at the moment - I've not been able to say that very often this season - with the fourth fastest time in the McLaren, eight tenths off the pace. Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton is fifth, a few thousandths further back with Pastor Maldonado an impressive sixth in the Williams.

  123. 1044: 

    Sebastian Vettel keeps upping the pace, this time dropping down to a 1:24.551 on the hard tyres and now holds a sixth tenth advantage over Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber. Ferrari's Fernando Alonso is a couple of thousandths further back.

  124. 1043: 

    BBC F1 pit lane reporter Tom Clarkson reports that Mercedes are taking the gearbox out of Nico Rosberg's car to investigate an overheating issue. The German has left the garage and with less than 17 minutes remaining, it looks like his session is over, too.

  125. 1038: 

    The marshals do a good job in removing the Force India quickly as Paul Di Resta begins the short walk back to the pits. His session is over with 20 minutes remaining.


    Force India's Paul Di Resta following his crash: "What just broke there?!"

  127. 1036: 

    We have our first crash of the weekend courtesy of Paul Di Resta, who hits the barrier after sliding into the gravel trap at Parabolica. His team-mate Adrian Sutil then has a spin down at Ascari. Not a good few minutes for Force India.

  128. 1034: 

    As Gary Anderson just mentioned, BBC Radio 5 live recorded a podcast which preview's this weekend's Italian Grand Prix and includes a feature-length interview with Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton. You can listen to it here.

  129. 1031: 

    Felipe Massa can only manage the 10th fastest time after his "tow", the Brazilian 0.755 seconds off the pace. Ferrari try it again on the next lap, with Fernando Alonso now the beneficiary, and it's more successful with Alonso clocking the fastest middle sector of all to go second quickest, two tenths adrift of leader Sebastian Vettel.


    Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne: "Ferrari are very clever with what they're doing."

  131. 1029: 

    Ferrari are employing their "tow" strategy, with Fernando Alonso getting a "tow" off Felipe Massa on two straights. The Spaniard crosses the line to go fourth fastest, half a second adrift. He then backs off to allow Massa to catch up and then returns the favour to his team-mate on the next lap.


    Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen: "The car is very bad in the last corner."

  133. 1026: 

    And to make matters worse for his rivals, Sebastian Vettel goes even quicker on his next lap - three tenths of a second faster in fact - to extend his lead at the top with a 1:24.947. His Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber is his closest rival, four tenths off the pace. Pastor Maldonado an impressive third at the moment in the Williams. Still no lap time from Massa, Alonso or Button - but all three are out and about.


    Force India's Paul Di Resta: "Starting to lose the rear tyres a bit in the last few laps - particularly through Lesmo 1 and Lesmo 2."

  135. 1021: 

    Normal service is resumed as Sebastian Vettel pumps in a 1:25.265, 0.249 seconds clear of Kimi Raikkonen in second. Mark Webber's first effort is only good enough for fourth, 0.390 seconds slower than his Red Bull team-mate.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "Ferrari don't look like they have the pure pace of the Red Bull, but I don't think they have shown their true hand yet - and even now I think they look like they have the speed to be a pain for anyone else in the race. What's not in doubt is the importance of this race for them. Even leaving aside the championship position - which dictates Fernando Alonso needs to beat Sebastian Vettel here - this race is for them like the Olympics is for an athlete."


    Mercedes: Bite point check and practice start for @LewisHamilton at the end of the pit lane as he heads out.

  138. 1018: 

    Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne goes fastest with a 1:25.551, three tenths clear of Sauber's Esteban Gutierrez. Massa, Alonso and Button still in the pits.


    There's a lot of love on Twitter for these new thermal imaging cameras which FOM have introduced this weekend...

    David Hone: Loving the thermal camera pictures, any chance of a rear facing one to see the effect of the exhaust gases over the rear wings?

    Pete: Loving these new pics of the thermal imaging cameras mounted on some of the cars gives a real insight into the work the tyres do

    Darv Dhillon: This thermal camera makes look like im watching the F1 in black and white like the good old days!

    Tweet us with any F1-related chat using the #bbcf1 hashtag.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson:

    "Amid the general doom and gloom about the startling pace of the Red Bulls on Friday - one senior figure from a rival team said they 'may as well give the trophy to Vettel now' - a sense that there might be a proper fight in qualifying came from within the team. Mark Webber pointed out that Red Bull had looked just as strong on Friday in Belgium two weeks ago, only for things to turn around on Saturday morning. 'At Spa we were very strong on Friday but we were not strong in P3 when it was dry - everyone arrived on the back of us,' the Australian said. That's true, of course. But what he did not say was that Sebastian Vettel went on to run away with the race."


    Sam Pennells: Sadly I cannot see the Red Bull train slowing. Hats off to them, they have been strong and consistent where as their rivals have faltered.

  142. 1012: 

    Paul Di Resta is the early pacesetter, the Scot clocking a 1:26.230 in the Force India to go 0.259 seconds clear of McLaren's Sergio Perez. Mercedes, Red Bull, Ferrari and Lotus seem content to sit this early part of the session in the garage.


    Sauber: Installation lap done! Both cars preparing for the next run.

  144. 1009: 

    Lotus F1 team principal Eric Boullier on the decision to abandon the long-wheelbase version of the car for the rest of the weekend: "We are very happy with it, we brought it here. We know it's competitive. We could see yesterday it is as competitive as the other car but we will take time." Will they race it later in the year? "Oh yes."

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "I have to admit I don't really understand what Lotus have been doing with the long-wheelbase car they brought here. The modification will give slightly better aerodynamics, more stability under braking, more inertia so the car is less prone to snap to oversteer and a better driver feeling for braking and oversteer, so less wear on the rear tyres.

    All those are things that are potentially good for Monza. But those weren't issues that the Lotus seemed to have. And having brought it here - and spent the £100,000 or so to do so - and set an identical lap time to the standard car, I don't know why they would then abandon it. They won't know if it does help look after the rear tyres after, say, 30 laps until they try it. So if the driver does the same lap time, why not leave it on to find out?"

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson:

    "Kimi Raikkonen used a long-wheelbase version of the Lotus in Friday practice, the aim being greater downforce and better braking stability. The Finn set an identical time to team-mate Romain Grosjean - although Raikkonen was classified ahead because he set the time first - and the team have decided to shelve the car for the rest of the weekend. Raikkonen said he felt there was 'hardly anything in it'. The team have said they plan to use the car later in the season."

  147. 1006: 

    Red Bull boss Christian Horner says they are using the flo-viz to gather data for the aerodynamicists having made a few "subtle" changes to the car overnight.

  148. 1003: 

    Red Bull have sent both their cars out with a bit of flo-viz daubed on the car. "It's a mechanism where airflow off front wing arrives at the side of the car," says BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson. "Everyday is a school day, you might not be able to do anything about it this weekend, but it might help at the next race."

  149. 1000: 
    GO! GO! GO!

    Marussia's Max Chilton blasts out of the pit lane as the third and final practice session gets under way at Monza. The drivers have 60 minutes and counting to make final tweaks.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson:

    "Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali admitted on Friday that this is a 'crucial' weekend for the team and it has not started that well. Fernando Alonso looked competitive in first practice, but he was nearly a second slower than title rival Sebastian Vettel in the second session, which left the impression Ferrari have a fair bit of work to do, as Alonso himself later admitted. 'Red Bull seem very strong again here,' he said, 'and we will have to do a lot of work to be as well prepared as possible for qualifying, in order to find those missing tenths.' The race-simulation runs on Friday afternoon were more encouraging, but it's hard to get away from the impression that this championship is slipping away from Ferrari."

    Allan McNish, BBC Radio 5 live analyst

    "Fernando Alonso needs to win this race, he needs to peg Sebastian Vettel back. We saw at Spa that he had race pace but he didn't have it in qualifying, They have to be on the front row to try and get the jump at start and try and control the race - so qualifying is key for Ferrari."

  152. 0955: 

    The Chain booms out on BBC Two. Lee McKenzie is your host, with Allan McNish alongside. Just five minutes to go until the start of final practice.

  153. 0951: 

    Has Sebastian Vettel got this championship tied up? Can Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton claw back the deficit? Can Kimi Raikkonen still feature in the title battle?

    Five years ago, Sebastian Vettel won his first Formula 1 race at Monza in one of the venue's most memorable races. Murray Walker picked out the 1995 race, where Johnny Herbert won, as a corker. What's your favourite Italian GP moment?

    You know the drill. Tweet us using the #bbcf1 hashtag or by texting 81111 (UK only), remembering to put your name on those SMS messages.

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson:

    "How to explain Red Bull's electrifying pace? Well, the fundamental quality of the car is the answer - particularly the nature of that quality. Red Bull have probably the smallest rear wing, so the car is as low on drag as possible, but it's still quick in the corners because the underbody generates so much more downforce than the others. The speed traps tell another part of the story. Vettel is fastest over the start-finish line and second-slowest (behind team-mate Mark Webber) at the speed strap at the end of the straight. That's because he's using a short top gear to ensure maximum acceleration off the corners. It means the car loses out at the end of the straights, but it gets to its terminal velocity quicker so stays there for longer. You would only do that if you were confident of being on pole and have the basic pace to ensure you won't be vulnerable to being passed on the straights. It's exactly the approach Red Bull took in 2011, when - guess what? - Vettel took pole and dominated the race."

  155. 0946: 

    So here's how today is going to work. Third practice starts at 1000 BST with TV coverage available on BBC Two and in the video console on top of this page. We'll have a short break before the qualifying programme begins at 1210 on BBC One with the session actually starting at 1300.

    BBC F1 technical analyst Gary Anderson

    "It's a lovely day here in Monza. The sun's shining and it's beginning to warm up nicely. The question to day is can anyone do anything about Red Bull? They have a quick car, but they do have to be a little bit careful with the plan they're trying. On Friday, Sebastian Vettel's car was set up for pure speed but that means shorter gears and with the DRS overtaking aid open, he is no quicker on the straight than his main rivals are without it. So if he's not at the front he'll find it very difficult to overtake. It will be interesting to see what they go for."

  157. 0941: 
    Sebastian Vettel

    Monza hasn't been a happy hunting ground for Red Bull, with the team securing just one podium - Vettel's victory in 2011 - since they joined the sport in 2005. However, the Red Bulls were in scintillating form on Friday, with Vettel stamping his authority on the race weekend with a dominant performance in second practice on Friday.

  158. 0937: 

    So Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel, champion in each of the last three seasons, is our championship leader. The German holds a 46-point lead over Ferrari's Fernando Alonso with Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes a further 12 behind.

    Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen has fallen off the pace, 63 points behind overall, with Red Bull's Mark Webber, who is leaving the sport at the end of the season, 19 points further back.


    George Ward: Ah wish I was at Monza!

    BBC Sport's chief F1 writer Andrew Benson:

    "Thousands of Ferrari fans are descending on Monza in the hope of seeing Fernando Alonso's Ferrari finish qualifying this afternoon on pole position. On the face of it, they are likely to be disappointed. Sebastian Vettel was in scintillating form in the Red Bull on Friday but as Lewis Hamilton said afterwards: 'Tomorrow could be a different day.' Hamilton has taken the last four pole positions, but even he admitted on Friday that 'at the moment I think Sebastian is going to get pole'. Mercedes, though, have often had difficult Fridays only to bounce back on Saturday. Vettel himself says he expects it to be 'tight'. This final practice session will give further clues as to whether he was simply being his usual cautious self - as nearly everyone believes."

  161. 0933: 

    Hello and welcome to our live coverage of third and final practice - followed by qualifying - for the Italian Grand Prix, round 12 of the Formula 1 World Championship and the last leg of the European season.

  162. 0930: 
    Sebastian Vettel

    With an average speed of 147mph, which sees drivers spending 78% of the time on full throttle, it's no wonder the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza has become known as the Cathedral of Speed.

    Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel mastered the challenge on Friday, finishing a hefty six tenths of a second ahead of the field. Can anyone stop the reigning world champion extending his championship lead?

Share this story

FIA Formula 1 World Championsh 2015

Position Driver Team Pts
1 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes 43
2 Germany S Vettel Ferrari 40
3 Germany N Rosberg Mercedes 33
4 Brazil F Massa Williams 20
5 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari 12
6 Brazil F Nasr Sauber 10
7 Finland V Bottas Williams 10
8 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull 9
9 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India 6
10 M Verstappen Toro Rosso 6
11 C Sainz Toro Rosso 6
12 Sweden M Ericsson Sauber 4
13 Russia D Kvyat Red Bull 2
14 Mexico S Perez Force India 1
15 France R Grosjean Lotus 0
16 Great Britain J Button McLaren 0
17 R Merhi Manor Marussia F1 0
18 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus 0
20 Spain F Alonso McLaren 0
21 W Stevens Manor Marussia F1 0


After 60 of 61 laps
Position Driver Team

Race stopped at 60 laps

1 Great Britain L Hamilton Mercedes
2 Germany S Vettel Red Bull
3 Australia D Ricciardo Red Bull
4 Spain F Alonso Ferrari
5 Brazil F Massa Williams
6 France J Vergne Toro Rosso
7 Mexico S Perez Force India
8 Finland K Raikkonen Ferrari
9 Germany N Hulkenberg Force India
10 Denmark K Magnussen McLaren
11 Finland V Bottas Williams
12 Venezuela P Maldonado Lotus
13 France R Grosjean Lotus
14 Russia D Kvyat Toro Rosso
15 Sweden M Ericsson Caterham
16 France J Bianchi Marussia
17 Great Britain M Chilton Marussia
18 Great Britain J Button (ret.) McLaren
19 Germany A Sutil (ret.) Sauber
20 Mexico E Gutierrez (ret.) Sauber
21 Germany N Rosberg (ret.) Mercedes
22 Japan K Kobayashi (ret.) Caterham