After a strong Qualifying that saw Lance line up P5 on the grid - just behind teammate Sergio Perez, Lance made a mega start to the race,- moving past Checo and the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas through Turn 1 to spend the opening laps in third.
By the fifth lap, Lance and Checo were running in P4 and P5 to set up a strong foundation to the race and a comfortable opening stint.
Lance was the first of the BWT Racing Point drivers to pit, doing so on Lap 27 of 66 and taking on a set of new Medium tyres before returning to the track in P8.
Once the strategies played out, Lance moved back into a net P4 by the end of the following lap
There was further entertainment when Checo and Lance ran together on the run to Turn 1, with our boys keeping it clean and making sure our strategy stayed unaffected.
By mid-distance, Lance was back into P4 after clearing the long-running Renault of Daniel Ricciardo.
The Canadian would then run until Lap 42 before switching to a set of used Softs to complete the race – as Checo had already committed to a one-stop race.
Lance would spend the final stages of the race hunting down the one-stopping Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel late on, clearing him to move into P5 and behind Checo with under 10 laps to go.
Checo was given a penalty for a blue-flag offence that meant Lance would gain P4 over him at the chequered flag, securing the team's best points haul of the season so far!
Lance: “I had a great launch off the line and I was able to pass Checo and the Mercedes of Bottas, which set me up for a good race.
It was a great feeling to race a few laps in third, even if we knew we weren’t racing the Mercedes – P4 was the maximum today.
It was good to battle with Checo on track for a bit too, even if it probably gave Otmar a few more grey hairs!
We changed to a two-stop in the race, but I was able to make up places, and I managed to overtake Vettel late on, and I gained a place through Checo’s penalty too.
Today was all about managing the tyres, which was difficult in the heat – but we made it work.
The dark clouds arriving late in the race were a nice relief from the sun! The team did a great job today and I’m happy we scored some big points.
I’m excited to get to Spa now because the track should suit our car and we can aim for more points.”
Lance will be back in action for the Belgian Grand Prix in two weeks time, ready for another triple-header series of F1 races in this unprecedented season of racing.
Italian Grand Prix
September 12, 2021
Lance claimed P7 and six points at the Italian Grand Prix as Formula One’s second triple-header draws to a close.