Madrid, Sep 5 (IANS) Ferrari is vying to improve on a poor season with the team’s second 2019 Formula One (F1) victory on home soil at Sunday’s Italian Grand Prix (GP).
The Italian manufacturer clinched its first win of this year’s campaign last week in Belgium, the 13th out of a total 21 grand prix races, reports Efe news.
Ferrari, currently placed second in the constructor’s standings with 145 points behind leader Mercedes, is aiming to end its drought at Monza after nine unsuccessful years. The prancing horse Ferrari team has not won at the Temple of Speed since Fernando Alonso’s victory in 2010.
The Spanish two-time world champion retired from F1 at the end of the 2018 season as a McLaren driver to focus on other projects such as endurance racing and rallying. Alonso, who raced for Ferrari for five seasons between 2010 and 2014, won the 2018 and 2019 editions of 24 Hours of Le Mans and the 2019 24 Hours of Daytona.
The racer announced earlier that he would take a brief break to prepare for his Dakar Rally debut in 2020.
Even if Ferrari wins on Sunday, Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton will continue to lead the driver standings.
The 34-year-old Briton has 268 points, 65 ahead of teammate Valtteri Bottas of Finland and 87 in front of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen of the Netherlands. Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel sits fourth with 99 adrift of Hamilton.
Hamilton, winner of eight out of the 13 races so far this season, is taking steady steps toward his sixth career world title, although he may suffer at Monza due to the Ferrari speed advantage seen at the Belgian GP.
The weather could lead to a 180-degree turn in the planned event as the latest forecast indicates a 70 per cent probability of rain on Sunday, the race day.