Lewis Hamilton made a poor start to the Italian Grand Prix and was made to pay by Nico Rosberg, as the gap at the top of the drivers; championship was cut to just two points.
The German perfectly utilized on his Mercedes teammate’s poor early showing to make it back-to-back victories, with Hamilton incredibly finding himself down in sixth place at the first corner.
It could have been much worse for the Englishman, who took full blame for the sticky start at Monza before recovering to finish ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in second place to keep a slender lead in the drivers’ standings.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen crossed third and fourth, respectively.
Rosberg’s first victory at the historic circuit outside Milan was his seventh of the season, one more than Hamilton, and 21st of his career as well as second in a row after Belgium last weekend.
“I’m feeling great, the race is on with Lewis. It is always going to be a great battle and I look forward to what is to come,” he said from the podium as an army of Ferrari fans flooded the pit straight.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel finished third to a much bigger roar from the fans yearning for a first Ferrari victory of the season at their home race.
Finnish team mate Kimi Raikkonen was fourth, with Australian Daniel Ricciardo fifth for Red Bull in a race with little drama on the track but more atmosphere than most of the others combined off it.
Hamilton now has 250 points, Rosberg 248 with Singapore’s night race the next destination.
“I don’t know really what happened at the start…I did everything normal,” said Hamilton.
Daniel Ricciardo in fifth, Valtteri Bottas claimed sixth place ahead of Max Verstappen, with the young sensation a little off form following a week in which his driving style has been openly criticised.
The Force India of Sergio Perez ended up in eighth position while Felipe Massa, driving his last Italian GP after announcing he is quitting Formula One at the end of the current campaign, finished ninth, with the second Force India of Nico Hulkenberg.