The 1995 Italian Grand Prix, otherwise known as the LXVI Pioneer Gran Premio d'Italia, was the twelfth round of the 1995 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza in Monza, Italy, on the 10 September 1995. The race would see title protagonists Damon Hill and Michael Schumacher clash for the second race in succession, with various other incidents allowing Johnny Herbert to claim his second career victory.
The weekend would start with a dominant display from David Coulthard, who swept to pole position for Williams-Renault having recently been told he would be dropped for 1996 in favour of Jacques Villeneuve. Schumacher lined up in second ahead of the first Ferrari of Berger, while Hill claimed fourth after an engine failure.
There would, however, be confusion when it came to start the race, with Coulthard spinning on the formation lap at Ascari, before heading into the pits having recovered. Schumacher hence sprinted away to claim an early lead when the lights went out, only for the race to be almost instantly halted by a red flag.
The cause was a huge accident in the midfield heading out of Ascari, with Max Papis spinning on the gravel kicked up by Coulthard, before being collected by a spinning Andrea Montermini. Roberto Moreno and Pedro Lamy were also involved, resulting in a blocked circuit, with the red flag period allowing Coulthard to jump into the spare Williams.
With that the order was reset to how it qualified, with Coulthard restored to pole, albeit in a car setup for Hill. He duly sprinted away at the restart to claim an early lead, while Berger got the jump on Schumacher into the first corner to claim second.
Unfortunately for Coulthard his race was ended early on by a front wheel bearing failure, sending him into the barriers. That left Berger in the lead ahead of Schumacher and Hill, who were dicing hard over second as the leaders began to catch the backmarkers.
Indeed, it would be as the pair came to lap Taki Inoue that their controversial clash occurred, with Hill getting out of shape after Inoue drifted into his path, resulting in him smacking into the back of Schumacher. The German racer blamed Hill, Hill blamed Inoue, and the stewards opted to half-agree with Schumacher, handing Hill a suspended one-race ban.
Regardless, with the two title protagonists out it was now a Ferrari one-two, with Berger ahead of Jean Alesi, and no one around to challenge them. As such it was down to Ferrari themselves to ruin their chances of a first home win since 1988.
Their first mistake was to ruin Berger's stop, resulting in the Austrian dropping behind teammate Alesi. He duly charged onto the back of the Alesi after the Frenchman's stop, only for a camera to fall off the Frenchman's car through Curva Grande and bounce right into Berger's path. The camera smashed the Austrian's suspension, and hence resulted in the #28 Ferrari flying into the gravel trap.
Alesi's race would subsequently be ended by a wheel bearing failure, handing the lead, and ultimately victory, to Herbert in the #2 Benetton-Renault. Mika Häkkinen was next for McLaren-Mercedes after a lonely race, while Heinz-Harald Frentzen inherited his first podium finish late on, after the two Jordan-Peugeots imploded with failures late on.
Victory for Michael Schumacher ensured that the German ace extended his Championship lead, although he was on the verge of missing a race if he received another reprimand. Regardless, Schumacher left Spa with fifteen points in hand over Damon Hill in second, with the Brit realistically the only man capable of challenging the German. Behind, another pointless weekend for Jean Alesi saw him lose more ground in third, with David Coulthard and Johnny Herbert completing the top five.
In the Constructors Championship Benetton-Renault had gained some breathing room, moving ten clear of Williams-Renault at the head of the hunt. Those two were hence set to fight for the crown amongst themselves, with Ferrari having slipped 27 points behind the leaders after another weekend of poor reliability. Behind, Ligier-Mugen-Honda had moved into fourth ahead of Jordan-Peugeot, while McLaren-Mercedes and Sauber-Ford Cosworth inched closer to the Irish squad.
The full entry list for the 1995 Italian Grand Prix is outlined below:
The full qualifying results for the 1995 Italian Grand Prix are outlined below:
|10||30||Heinz-Harald Frentzen||Sauber-Ford Cosworth||1:27.245||1:26.541||+2.079s|
|14||29||Jean-Christophe Boullion||Sauber-Ford Cosworth||1:30.997||1:28.741||+4.279s|
|18||24||Luca Badoer||Minardi-Ford Cosworth||1:30.731||1:29.559||+5.097s|
|19||23||Pedro Lamy||Minardi-Ford Cosworth||1:29.936||1:31.402||+5.474s|
|21||17||Andrea Montermini||Pacific-Ford Cosworth||1:32.121||1:30.721||+6.259s|
|22||22||Roberto Moreno||Forti-Ford Cosworth||1:32.491||1:30.834||+6.372s|
|23||21||Pedro Diniz||Forti-Ford Cosworth||1:32.540||1:31.102||+7.640s|
|24||16||Giovanni Lavaggi||Pacific-Ford Cosworth||1:32.935||1:32.470||+8.008s|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car to set their best time in that session.
- Bold indicates a driver's best/qualifying time.
- * Boullion started the race from the pit lane on the second start.
The full results for the 1995 Italian Grand Prix are outlined below:
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
- * Montermini and Moreno failed to take the restart of the race.
- Twentieth entry for David Coulthard.
- Second career victory for Johnny Herbert.
- Benetton secured their 23rd victory as a constructor.
- Heinz-Harald Frentzen scored his maiden podium finish.
- Maiden points finish for Mika Salo.
There was no change to the top of the Championship standings as a result of the Italian Grand Prix, with Schumacher and Hill still separated by fifteen points, and both holding a suspended one-race ban. Behind, however, there had been some significant changes, with Johnny Herbert having leapt up to third ahead of Jean Alesi and David Coulthard, with nine points covering the trio. Elsewhere, Mika Häkkinen had shot into the top ten behind Heinz-Harald Frentzen, with seventeen drivers on the board.
In the Constructors Championship it had been a positive day for Benetton-Renault, who were the only top three team to score in Italy. Herbert's victory ensured that they established a twenty point lead over Williams-Renault at the head of the field, while Ferrari were now 37 points behind in third. Elsewhere, McLaren-Mercedes had been another big winner, moving into fourth ahead of Sauber-Ford Cosworth, while Jordan-Peugeot slipped to seventh, albeit just seven points off of McLaren in fourth.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Images and Videos:
- 'Italian GP, 1995', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), https://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr576.html, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- 'Italy 1995: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1995/italie/engages.aspx, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- 'Pioneer 66° Gran Premio d'ltalia - QUALIFYING 1', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1995/races/632/italy/qualifying-1.html, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- 'Pioneer 66° Gran Premio d'ltalia - QUALIFYING 2', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/1995/races/632/italy/qualifying-2.html, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- 'Italy 1995: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1995/italie/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- 'Italy 1995: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1995/italie/classement.aspx, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- '1995 Italian GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2014), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1995&gp=Italian%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
- '12. Italy 1995', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/1995/italie.aspx, (Accessed 10/08/2019)
|V T E||Italian Grand Prix|
|Circuits||Monza (1950 - 1979, 1981 - Present), Imola (1980)|
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