Mercedes principal Toto Wolff feels the farcical nature of qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix made the drivers look like “idiots”. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc took pole position at Monza, with the two Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas next on the grid. Sebastian Vettel was fourth ahead of Daniel Ricciardo but only two drivers actually made it to the start of Q3 to record a final lap.
Leclerc and McLaren’s Carlos Sainz, who starts seventh, got out on the track while the other drivers all tried to be cagey and wait for someone to go out so they could catch a tow in their slipstream. It ended up with the majority of the field being timed out as nobody made it to the start. There were a lot of red faces in the paddock and confusion was the order of the day, with Wolf admitting that it did not paint the sport in a particularly good light.
“You have been around for 35 years, have you ever seen anything this? That was worse than a junior formula,” he told sky sports. “The problem was everyone wants a slipstream and nobody wants to go first…. and then everyone looks like idiots.”