Rubens Barrichello took his second victory of the season with a superb display of race pace in the BGP-001 sealing a one-two result for Brawn at Monza.
The Brazilian benefitted from a single pitstop strategy and thanks to his consistent laptimes that was faster than his rivals, Rubens earned his third victory at the Italian Grand Prix.
By winning the race Barrichello has reduced his team-mate lead in the drivers’ standings to 14 points, with four races remaining.
As for Red Bull Racing, this was a disastrous afternoon with only one point scored by Sebastian Vettel.
The German was unable to match the Brawns pace in the 53-lap race and eighth position was the best he could manage.
His team-mate Mark Webber was forced to retire after a coming together with Robert Kubica’s BMW on the opening lap at the Roggia chicane. That incident has seriously dented the Australian’s chance in the world championship.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen finished in third (his fourth podium result) though the Finn did inherit that podium place on the final lap when Lewis Hamilton lost control of his McLaren at Lesmo.
Hamilton was unable to make his two-stop strategy work, despite charging away from the field from pole in the opening stint. The world champion was on course for third ahead of Raikkonen and qualifying hero Sutil until his eleventh hour crash at the first Lesmo, which caused the race to finish behind the safety car.
Adrian Sutil came home fourth for Force India with Renault’s Fernando Alonso in fifth. Early race favourite Heikki Kovalainen lost ground in the opening laps and finished in a disappointing sixth.
BMW’s Nick Heidfeld did well to finish in seventh while Hamilton’s late crash allowed Vettel to salvage the final point with eighth. As for Giancarlo Fisichella, driving for the Scuderia for the first time, the Italian finished in a lonely ninth. At least Giancarlo didn’t get lapped unlike his predecessor Luca Badoer…
Further back, the struggling Toyotas provided some late race entertainment as Jarno Trulli bounced off Kazuki Nakajima’s Williams at the Rettifilo chicane, and then had a wheel-to-wheel battle with his team-mate Timo Glock while trying to regain momentum. Nakajima survived for tenth, with Glock securing P11 when Trulli went rally crossing through the gravel trying to hold off his team-mate.
Jarno finished behind Sebastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) but ahead of Romain Grosjean (Renault) and Nico Rosberg (Williams).
Race results from Monza, 53 laps:
1. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes 1h16:21.706
2. Button Brawn-Mercedes +2.866
3. Raikkonen Ferrari +30.664
4. Sutil Force India-Mercedes +31.131
5. Alonso Renault +59.182
6. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes +1:00.693
7. Heidfeld BMW Sauber +1:22.412
8. Vettel Red Bull-Renault +1:25.427
9. Fisichella Ferrari +1:26.856
10. Nakajima Williams-Toyota +2:00.000
11. Glock Toyota +2:43.925
12. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes +1 lap
13. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari +1 lap
14. Trulli Toyota +1 lap
15. Grosjean Renault +1 lap
16. Rosberg Williams-Toyota +2 laps
Fastest lap: Sutil, 1:24.739
Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes 23 laps
Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari 20 laps
Kubica BMW Sauber 16 laps
Webber Red Bull-Renault 1 lap
World Championship standings, round 13:
1. Button 80
2. Barrichello 66
3. Vettel 54
4. Webber 51.5
5. Raikkonen 40
6. Rosberg 30.5
7. Hamilton 27
8. Trulli 22.5
9. Massa 22
10. Alonso 20
11. Kovalainen 20
12. Glock 16
13. Heidfeld 12
14. Kubica 8
15. Fisichella 8
16. Sutil 5
17. Buemi 3
18. Bourdais 2
1. Brawn-Mercedes 146
2. Red Bull-Renault 105.5
3. Ferrari 62
4. McLaren-Mercedes 47
5. Toyota 38.5
6. Williams-Toyota 30.5
7. BMW Sauber 20
8. Renault 20
9. Force India-Mercedes 13
10. Toro Rosso-Ferrari 5
Next race: Singapore Grand Prix, September 25-27