Monza looks like being another wet race (2008 Italian Grand Prix preview)

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The Italian Grand Prix is forecast to be wet - good news for Hamilton?
The Italian Grand Prix is forecast to be wet - good news for Hamilton?

The 2008 F1 season could see a fourth race hit by rain this weekend.

A wet Italian Grand Prix is very rare but there are strong predictions for wet weather during qualifying this weekend as well as the Grand Prix itself.

Although weather predictions for severals days ahead can be tricky to rely on the expectation of rain has been growing stronger. Some sites are predicting as much as a 90% chance of rain, but most agree showers are likely during the race weekend.

This radar prediction (found via shows the low pressure area associated with the rainfall. To view the future forecasts select one of the time intervals on the left of the main image, and to view the rainfall projection click Pr??cipitations at the top of the page.

For reference you can see the geographical location of the Autodromo Nazionale Monza here.

The Italian Grand Prix is usually reliably dry. In fact, apart from a damp start to the 2004 race, it?s hardly seen a drop of rain during the Grand Prix for decades.

Wet weather is guaranteed to make life more difficult for the drivers but along the high-speed Monza straights it could be even tougher. At a track where downforce levels are usually their lowest and the cars are trimmed for speeds in excess of 220mph, the dangers of wet weather racing are amplified.

It?s been an unusually wet F1 season. Already we?ve had rain at Monaco (wet-dry), Silverstone (wet-wetter) and Belgium (damp-dry-damp). There was a very brief rain showed during the French round as well. Last year also saw three races affected by rain: Europe (Nurburgring), Japan and China.

In all three of the significantly wet races this year Lewis Hamilton finished first on the track (although at Belgium, of course, had the win taken off him). More wet weather this weekend could play to his strengths and dampen the Tifosi?s spirits.

But several other drivers will fancy their chances of a good finish in wet weather including Robert Kubica, Sebastian Vettel and Adrian Sutil.

Even if the rain doesn?t materialise the weekend is still expected to be cool, which will be bad for Ferrari.

Keep an eye on the 2008 Italian Grand Prix weather watch thread started by Becken in the forum for more on developments with the weather this weekend.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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29 comments on “Monza looks like being another wet race (2008 Italian Grand Prix preview)”

  1. Pray for rain everyone !

    Rain gives us the type of F1 races we want to see.
    Low grip, aerodynamics have a much smaller impact, cars are able to follow each other closely & most importantly: The Driver is King !

    If you’ve got the skill, a little luck & some balls of steel you can win in a Force India if it’s wet from the start.

  2. I’m starting my rain dance now…

  3. Don’t rule out Heidfeld in the rain…he loves it!

  4. Indeed it’s not looking too good for Ferrari this weekend. With the low temperatures, combined with the hardest compound combination Bridgestone can muster, the Maranello outfit will be hard pressed to contain Hamilton. If the race is wet though, nothing short of a mechanical failure (or the FIA, of course) can surely deny him of the win. It will also be interesting to see the Tifosi reaction should Lewis bring it home, I have an inkling they will be cheering him on. The sport first, the team second. Let’s hope so.

  5. @ Salty.

    Agreed. Hopefully the real fans that most of the Tifosi are will be saddened by the Spa travesty and would appreciate or at least respect a Lewis win.

  6. yeah hope it rains, hamilton seems to screw up in the rain. hit the wall in monaco, spun on lap 2 in spa, but drove well in the uk, so 2 in 3 chance of him blowing it.

  7. Long gone are the days where Ferrari fans were doing rain dance.
    Lewis fans, why do you want rain so much-apart from good racing obviously? Rain brings unpredictiblity, he could well have hit Rosberg in Spa and lost the race, or someone could bump into him(fuji last year). He has every chance to win at Monza in dry.

  8. Hamilton is good in the rain until it starts to dry…then he’s average.

  9. Todd,

    Won in Monaco, won at Silverstone, and won at… oh wait.

  10. @ Salty:”Indeed it’s not looking too good for Ferrari this weekend.”
    Don’t worry, they can always rely on the Race Stewards if things get tough for them… ;-)

  11. Oh no! The first car to pass a Ferrari in the wet will be penalised for having an advantage!!!!

  12. to todd!

    You must be a Ferrari fan because as i recall Massa spun how many times in Silverstone? Kimi?
    And let’s not forget monaco, Massa gone straight in first corner 2 times and Kimi in Sutil

  13. It may be a different story with some more heat in the air & track. Webber is as good as anyone in the wet but the RB4 on cold tyres and cold track hasn’t done anything for him. Hamilton seems to get heat into the tyres better than most others but if that is cancelled out I still see him as a good chance of getting ratty under pressure & blowing it.

  14. motion: I agree re: Hamilton.

    Let’s not forget he was the first person to spin in the damp opening laps of Spa. Raikkonen didn’t lose it until it was actually raining and he had dry tyres on.

    I think Lewis’ wet driving skills are overrated. If Raikkonen hadnt messed up with his tyre choice in Silverstone who knows what would have happened. And he was very lucky to survive his brush with the wall in Monaco.

    But whatever happens I hope there’s a downpour on Sunday because we’ve never seen that at Monza.

  15. Oh it’s great to be back on F1FANATIC and reading the various interpretations of the recent happenings!!

    So, Monza, lots of rain eh?? I think this will be favourable for Hamilton and McLaren on the whole. I remember a time where Raikkonen was very handy in the rain, not quite Schumi or Senna but handy nonetheless. Now it seems whenever there’s a bit of rain, he seems to over-cook it.

    There’s also a number of others drivers who thrive in the rain too as Keith said like Kubica, Vettel, Heidfeld and Sutil. I actually think Alonso is an under-rated wet-weather driver too…

    Of course, ANYTHING can happen at any given race with rain. But with the exceptionally low downforce/high speed circuit like Monza even a very competent wet weather driver like Hamilton may struggle.

    Either way, rain or shine, I’m very much looking forward to this race as I quickly want to forget the last one…

  16. I disagree when you say the best case scenario for HAM is a wet race. He should pray for a dry low temperature one. Do not forget that a wet race is fun to watch but a nightmare for the pilots as well as a lottery. No matter how talented you are in the wet if you are catch by aquaplaning (like RAI in Spa or ALO in Fuji 07), increases the chances of hit the wall, get hit by someone else less gifted…

  17. Does anybody know what the drainage is like at Monza? If there is normally only racing in hot, dry conditions, does this mean there are no big drains? Is there a possiblity of rivers across the track or lots of standing water, or is it all going to end up in the infield?

  18. Toncho

    RAI was not cout out because of aquqplaning, he crashed because of the green slipery color

  19. I have to say that I’m another one doing the rain dance and will enjoy seeing McLaren win in Italy.

    Interesting to see that Pat Symonds has spoken out regarding the Spa incident.

    Nobody has made much of Heike’s gear box problems. Does anybody know what the issue was, and is this a blip in McLaren’s 2008 reliability. Lets hope not.

  20. oh yes i remember massa in the wet, but massa isnt hyped on this blog day in and day out, hamilton is, so my comments are directed at him and his aggressively-defensive fans. :D

    @Spencer yeah been wondering what happened there myself, stopped on the last lap, timing says ‘drivetrain’ not gearbox? so dunno. he had a small shunt with webber that i saw and that was about it… he’s very unlucky this year, he was having a great race (not counting the first lap)

  21. Rain at Monza- can’t wait! Can’t wait for the next batch of infractions that stooge Donnelly and his merry band of “Stoopids” will come up with, to take the race away from the right full winner and award it to whichever Ferrari driver manages to keep his machine intact and finishes.

    Oh, here’s also hoping the race will be as interesting as the skewed results!

  22. Todd – I’m behind Hamilton on the penalty thing but I think the idea I hype him is ridiculous. I’ve never shied away from pointing out when he’s made a mistake – like at Bahrain, Canada, France and in qualifying at Silverstone, for example.

  23. Spencer, nice point. Unreliabilty for Mclaren would throw in a new twist.

    And please, no rain. Kimi-Massa 1-2 desperately needed for Ferrari :-)

  24. What’s the point of watching? It’s obvious it’s going to be a Ferrari 1 2. I just wonder how creative Monza’s stewards are going to be to ensure this…….

  25. I want to second Spencer’s point about Heikki’s gearbox and add some fairly rank speculation: Remember Hamilton said that his lap two La Source spin occured “just at the last downshift.” Now, computer controlled engine braking is supposedly banned via the common ECU. But I know some have written that McL has found a way to restore the effect with their crazy 8 paddle steering wheel (which would explain their massive braking advantage over Ferrari in the rain?). Im not saying that Hamilton can’t spin the car. But I suspect that this was a technical malfunction or maybe an electronic controls malfunction.

  26. “What’s the point of watching? It’s obvious it’s going to be a Ferrari 1 2. I just wonder how creative Monza’s stewards are going to be to ensure this…….”

    Cry baby, cry. **** wrong is with You guys?!
    And yes Andy, You don’t need to watch it because it will be like Nurburgring 2007 lol

  27. “**** wrong…” ???? Its obvious whats wrong. This so called sport that i’ve loved for nearly 30 years, is turning into a farce…. And still we get numpties like you who think its all a big joke and just take the proverbial.

  28. “Cry baby, cry. **** wrong is with You guys?!
    And yes Andy, You don’t need to watch it because it will be like Nurburgring 2007 lol”

    With comments & “fans” like these, there’s no wonder F1 is going to the dogs. Grow up.

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