Date: 10th September 2012 at 9:53am
Written by:

McLaren stood on the top step of the podium for the third successive race on Sunday, with Lewis Hamilton driving away from pole position to victory.

With the worlds media attention firmly fixed on the 2008 Formula One World Champion after speculation linked him with a sensation switch from McLaren to Mercedes prior to the team arriving in Italy, Hamilton had the perfect weekend.

After being half a second off the pace in free practice one on Friday morning, Hamilton came back to stand at the top of the timing sheets on Friday afternoon in free practice two and that’s where he would stay throughout the entire weekend.

Free practice three on Saturday morning, Hamilton was still top and after qualifying, Hamilton was once again quickest.

With team-mate Jenson Button just a tenth of a second off the pace of Hamilton, it was an all McLaren front row, for Ferrari’s home race of the season.

?This is a fabulous day for the whole team – they?ve done a fantastic job to get our car into this position, so I want to say a huge thanks to them. The whole Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team deserves this result. It?s going to be a fast, tough race tomorrow. Jenson and the Ferraris are very quick, but we?ve got a good car and a good set-up, and we?re in the best possible position to score maximum points tomorrow.’ Hamilton told formula1.com on Saturday afternoon.

Hamilton got away from the grid well on Sunday morning, whilst team-mate Button was a bit slow to accelerate through the gears, giving Felipe Massa the chance to not only get into second place, but also pull alongside Hamilton going into the first corner.

This was the closest anyone got to Hamilton throughout the rest of the race.

After the first round of pit-stops Saubers Sergio Perez would inherit the lead for a short while from Hamilton, but the McLaren was once again back in front with an easy pass, before the Mexican himself had to make his pit-stop.

With Button having to retire due to a mechanical fault, it was Perez who would drive on to take second place, although he never put Hamilton under any pressure for the race win.

?Winning at Monza is one of the greatest experiences of my Formula One career. I absolutely love this place: I?ve been coming to Italy to race since I was 13 years-old and I just love the culture, the food and the people. Since I started in Formula One, Monza has been one of the races I always wanted to win at – it?s such an incredible, historic circuit and all the great racing drivers have won here. To finally put my name on that list makes me feel extremely proud, but also very humble. Our car has been fantastic all weekend, and it was nice to have a relaxed grand prix with no troubles. I was out on my own for most of the race and just tried to manage the gap behind me. I was cruising at the end, but, once I heard that Sergio Perez had got past Fernando Alonso, I had to push a little to keep the cushion over second place. Hamilton told the press on Sunday evening.

The 25 points for the victory, boosted Hamilton into second place in the championship thanks to both Red Bull’s also failing to complete the race.

Hamilton now stands 37 points behind Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso in the standings after the Spaniard finished third at Monza.

Hamilton’s team-mate Jenson Button remains sixth 41 points behind Hamilton in the F1 Drivers championship.