F1 Italian Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton tops first practice in Monza as Briton puts Mercedes feud behind him

Hamilton led an unusual British one-two as Button out-paces Nico Rosberg

Lewis Hamilton blitzed first practice ahead of the Italian Grand Prix as he set his sights on again reeling in Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg in the battle for the Formula One world title.

Unusually, there was no Mercedes lock out of the top two places as instead Hamilton spearheaded a British one-two, with McLaren's Jenson Button second on the timesheet around one of the sport's historic tracks, Monza.

Hamilton, though, was in a class of his own as he finished 0.623secs ahead of Button, with Rosberg forced to settle for only third best, with the German 0.808secs down.

In light of what transpired in Belgium a fortnight ago, with Rosberg deliberately opting not to pull out of a collision with Hamilton on lap two which wrecked the Briton's race, the focus has been more intense than usual on the duo.

Despite apologising and paying a significant six-figure fine handed down by Mercedes, Rosberg still emerged from the event with a further 18 points more than Hamilton, and is now 29 ahead in the standings.


That has placed additional pressure on Hamilton to enjoy a clean weekend, something that has eluded him for some considerable time.

At least his time of one minute 26.187secs laid down a marker he means business this weekend.

Ferrari's Fernando Alonso also managed to finish within a second of Hamilton, lapping 0.982secs off the pace.

Suggesting McLaren could be in for a strong weekend, Kevin Magnussen was fifth quickest, just over a second back on Hamilton, and four tenths of a second down on Button.

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel was sixth, a fraction down on Magnussen, with Kimi Raikkonen seventh quickest in his Ferrari.

Force India duo Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg sandwiched Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat to complete the top 10.

As for Daniel Ricciardo, winner of the last two races in Hungary and Belgium to give him a shout of the title, the Australian was down in 16th, 2.3secs down.

Alonso waves his hand in the air as he talks with his engineers Alonso waves his hand in the air as he talks with his engineers Throughout the 90-minute session four test drivers were handed an outing, with Daniel Juncadella at Force India unusually given the opening half hour in place of Perez.

The 23-year-old Spaniard completed 10 laps, with his best three seconds down on Hamilton as he finished 17th.

Sauber's Giedo van der Garde, in for Adrian Sutil, finished two places and eight tenths of a second ahead of Juncadella.

Further down the grid, Charles Pic took over FP1 duties from fellow Frenchman Romain Grosjean at Lotus, finishing 21st and nearly four seconds back.

At troubled Caterham, with another Spaniard in Roberto Merhi making his rookie outing in place of Kamui Kobayashi, the 23-year-old was 22nd on the timesheet.

Merhi completed 29 laps, with his best 4.5secs off the pace, but quicker than team-mate Marcus Ericsson who propped up the standings as he was a further two tenths of a second adrift.

Marussia's Max Chilton was 19th, 3.8secs back, but ahead of team-mate Jules Bianchi.


Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

Russell Brand at an anti-austerity march in June
peopleActor and comedian says 'there's no point doing it if you're not'
Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
art'Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' followed hoax reports artist had been arrested and unveiled
Oscar Pistorius is led out of court in Pretoria. Pistorius received a five-year prison sentence for culpable homicide by judge Thokozile Masipais for the killing of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp
voicesThokozile Masipa simply had no choice but to jail the athlete
Arts and Entertainment
Sister Cristina Scuccia sings 'Like a Virgin' in Venice

Like Madonna, Sister Cristina Scuccia's video is also set in Venice

Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

Life and Style
The Tinder app has around 10 million users worldwide

techThe original free dating app will remain the same, developers say


Endangered species spotted in a creek in the Qinling mountains

peopleJust weeks after he created dress for Alamuddin-Clooney wedding
Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album