Italian Grand Prix – 1985


The Italian Grand Prix brought together serious competitors who were more than capable of battling for victory. Names like Ayrton Senna, Keke Rosberg, Nigel Mansell, Nelson Piquet, Alain Prost and Michele Alboreto – all of them capable of securing a win in Monza.

For this reason, the Racing Drivers Association suggested that Formula 1 organizers granted an extra point for the fastest lap during the qualifying rounds, as was the case between 1950 and 1959.

“It’s a new race and I think that the driver to secure a pole position should be rewarded.”

Ayrton Senna supported the initiative and also liked the idea of rewarding the pole position with an extra point. If the idea were to become a reality, the Brazilian driver would gain his fifth extra point. He had already scored the pole position in Portugal, San Marino, Monaco and the USA, in 1985. Now, in his first time racing in Monza, he walked away with the first position on the starting grid, after completing a lap in 1min25s084 with his Lotus.

For him, the qualifying sessions were another race, in which the car is set up for a small number of laps and must perform its best.

“We push our cars to the limit and the engineers fine tune the car’s electronics to reduce lap time.”

Despite movement behind the scenes, the Formula 1 organizers did not return to the old ways, and until today points are counted solely and exclusively in accordance with drivers’ final race position.

Ayrton would be starting next to Keke Rosberg’s Williams. Right after them, came in Nigel Mansell (driving the other Williams) and Brabham’s Nelson Piquet. At the brake point at the end of the straight, Rosberg took the lead, as Senna crossed the gravel trap of the S, allowing Mansell to pass him.  McLaren’s Alain Prost took the fourth place away from Piquet, who fell to seventh at the start but was able to make a recovery.

In the first few laps, Prost and Elio de Angelis (Lotus) who had started in sixth, were able to overtake Ayrton. The Brazilian’s Lotus wasn’t performing well. Gradually, Senna’s car got better and, on the fourth lap, Mansell was stranded in the middle of the track, with mechanical issues. The “Lion” was able to stay in the race, but would spend the rest of the dispute in the last positions.

Ayrton passed his teammate, Elio de Angelis, on lap 31, and held on to third place. Niki Lauda, who had been making an amazing race of recovery, had to retire with transmission problems on lap 33.

In the fight for the title, Michele Alboreto, who was in second place overall, also wasn’t able to finish the race. The Ferrari driver ran out of gas on lap 45, giving Prost the chance to take off in the lead, since Keke Rosberg, who was in first place, had his William’s Honda engine blow up on him.

The result meant that Prost increased his lead in the standings over Alboreto to 12 points.  In a very close finish, Nelson Piquet and Ayrton Senna dueled for the last few laps, in Monza, but Piquet, with new tires and a more reliable car, took the second place and Ayrton Senna crossed the finish line in third. It was the first time in F1 that he was on the podium of three consecutive races (Austria, the Netherlands, and Italy).

The next Grand Prix of the 1985 season was scheduled for the following weekend, in Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium. It would turn out to be one of the most spectacular races in Ayrton Senna’s career: a flawless win in the rain.

Resumo da Corrida

  • 1 Ayrton Senna
  • 2 K. Rosberg
  • 3 N. Mansell
  • 4 N. Piquet
  • 5 A. Prost
  • 6 E. de Angelis
  • 7 M. Alboreto
  • 8 P. Tambay
  • 9 M. Surer
  • 10 S. Johansson
  • 11 G. Berger
  • 12 D. Warwick
  • 13 R. Patrese
  • 14 T. Boutsen
  • 15 T. Fabi
  • 16 N. Lauda
  • 17 E. Cheever
  • 18 M. Brundle
  • 19 P. Streiff
  • 20 J. Laffite
  • 21 P. Ghinzani
  • 22 H. Rothengatter
  • 23 P. Martini
  • 24 Achenson
  • 25 A. Jones
  • 26 P. Alliot
Voltas 51
Tempo Nublado
Volta mais rápida N. Mansell - 1´28´´283
Podium 1º A. Prost 2º N. Piquet 3º Ayrton Senna
Carros 26
Abandonos 13