1996 Italian Grand Prix

The 1996 Italian Grand Prix was a Formula One motor race held on 8 September 1996 at Monza. It was the fourteenth race of the 1996 Formula One World Championship.

1996 Italian Grand Prix
Race 14 of 16 in the 1996 Formula One World Championship
Monza 1995-1999.png
Race details
Date 8 September 1996
Official name Pioneer 67o Gran Premio d'Italia[1]
Location Autodromo Nazionale di Monza
Monza, Lombardy, Italy
Course Permanent racing facility
Course length 5.770 km (3.585 mi)
Distance 53 laps, 305.810 km (190.022 mi)
Weather Dry
Pole position
Driver Williams-Renault
Time 1:24.204
Fastest lap
Driver Germany Michael Schumacher Ferrari
Time 1:26.110 on lap 50
First Ferrari
Second Benetton-Renault
Third McLaren-Mercedes
Lap leaders

The 53-lap race was won by Michael Schumacher, driving a Ferrari, after he started from third position. It was Schumacher's third victory of the season and the Ferrari team's first victory at Monza since 1988. Jean Alesi finished second in a Benetton-Renault, with Mika Häkkinen third in a McLaren-Mercedes. Drivers' Championship leader Damon Hill took pole position in his Williams-Renault and led until he made an error and spun off on lap 6, while his teammate and rival, Jacques Villeneuve, could only manage seventh.


To stop cars kerb-hopping at chicanes due to ongoing track modifications at the time of the race, tyre barriers were erected at each chicane. However this caused much controversy during the race, particularly in the opening laps, when two tyres ran free across the track in the path of other drivers. Damon Hill had a comfortable lead but would retire after colliding with the tyres.


Jean Alesi made an excellent start from sixth to lead polesitter Damon Hill into the first corner, but ran wide and struck a tyre stack between the two Lesmos on the opening lap and lost the lead to Hill. Alesi was fortunate to escape with his own car undamaged, but his error caused a tyre to fall on the track and break the front wing of Mika Häkkinen's McLaren. Häkkinen was forced to pit for a new nose-cone, dropping him to seventeenth on the track.

Jacques Villeneuve sent a tyre spinning into David Coulthard's car at the Ascari chicane on the opening lap in a similar incident while trying to pass Michael Schumacher. Villeneuve was able to continue, although the collision with the tyre stack bent his suspension, which slowed his car and forced him to pit for a new set of tyres, a new nose-cone and a new steering wheel, dropping him to sixteenth place and putting him a lap behind. Coulthard was less fortunate, and immediately spun off with a broken suspension pushrod. Villeneuve apologised to Coulthard after the race. Whilst Gerhard Berger in the second Benetton had eventually pulled off before Parabolica when his gearbox failed on lap 5.

Hill was leading by four seconds on lap six when he hit the tyre barriers at the first chicane and retired with broken suspension. Eddie Irvine ran in third place for most of the first half of the race before having a similar accident. In all, eight cars made contact with the tyre barriers after running wide on the track, of which five (Hill, Heinz-Harald Frentzen, Olivier Panis, Ricardo Rosset and Irvine) retired.

Michael Schumacher also hit a tyre stack in the closing stages but continued without damage to his car and won the race. This was his first ever Italian Grand Prix victory after years of misfortunes including the collision with Hill the previous year. Alesi, who re-took the lead following Hill's exit, finished second after losing out to Schumacher in the pit stops, and Häkkinen eventually recovered to third place thanks in part to Irvine's retirement. The Jordan-Peugeots of Martin Brundle and Rubens Barrichello finished in fourth and fifth positions respectively after a race-long battle for fourth place, Brundle overtaking at the Parabolica corner after Barrichello accidentally turned his engine off while trying to investigate a clutch problem, and had to get a push-start from the marshalls to continue. Pedro Diniz finished sixth ahead of Villeneuve, who only managed seventh place after Johnny Herbert's engine cut out on the final lap.



Pos No Driver Constructor Time Diff.
1 5   Damon Hill Williams-Renault 1:24.204
2 6   Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 1:24.521 +0.317
3 1   Michael Schumacher Ferrari 1:24.781 +0.577
4 7   Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes 1:24.939 +0.735
5 8   David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 1:24.976 +0.772
6 3   Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 1:25.201 +0.997
7 2   Eddie Irvine Ferrari 1:25.226 +1.022
8 4   Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 1:25.470 +1.266
9 12   Martin Brundle Jordan-Peugeot 1:26.037 +1.833
10 11   Rubens Barrichello Jordan-Peugeot 1:26.194 +1.990
11 9   Olivier Panis Ligier-Mugen-Honda 1:26.206 +2.002
12 14   Johnny Herbert Sauber-Ford 1:26.345 +2.141
13 15   Heinz-Harald Frentzen Sauber-Ford 1:26.505 +2.301
14 10   Pedro Diniz Ligier-Mugen-Honda 1:26.726 +2.522
15 17   Jos Verstappen Footwork-Hart 1:27.270 +3.066
16 18   Ukyo Katayama Tyrrell-Yamaha 1:28.234 +4.030
17 19   Mika Salo Tyrrell-Yamaha 1:28.472 +4.268
18 20   Pedro Lamy Minardi-Ford 1:28.933 +4.729
19 16   Ricardo Rosset Footwork-Hart 1:29.181 +4.977
20 21   Giovanni Lavaggi Minardi-Ford 1:29.833 +5.629
107% time: 1:30.098


Pos No Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 1   Michael Schumacher Ferrari 53 1:17:43.632 3 10
2 3   Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 53 + 18.265 6 6
3 7   Mika Häkkinen McLaren-Mercedes 53 + 1:06.635 4 4
4 12   Martin Brundle Jordan-Peugeot 53 + 1:25.217 9 3
5 11   Rubens Barrichello Jordan-Peugeot 53 + 1:25.475 10 2
6 10   Pedro Diniz Ligier-Mugen-Honda 52 + 1 Lap 14 1
7 6   Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 52 + 1 Lap 2  
8 17   Jos Verstappen Footwork-Hart 52 + 1 Lap 15  
9 14   Johnny Herbert Sauber-Ford 51 Engine 12  
10 18   Ukyo Katayama Tyrrell-Yamaha 51 + 2 Laps 16  
Ret 16   Ricardo Rosset Footwork-Hart 36 Spun Off 19  
Ret 2   Eddie Irvine Ferrari 23 Spun Off 7  
Ret 20   Pedro Lamy Minardi-Ford 12 Engine 18  
Ret 19   Mika Salo Tyrrell-Yamaha 9 Engine 17  
Ret 15   Heinz-Harald Frentzen Sauber-Ford 7 Spun Off 13  
Ret 5   Damon Hill Williams-Renault 5 Spun Off 1  
Ret 21   Giovanni Lavaggi Minardi-Ford 5 Engine 20  
Ret 4   Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 4 Gearbox 8  
Ret 9   Olivier Panis Ligier-Mugen-Honda 2 Spun Off 11  
Ret 8   David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 1 Spun Off 5  


Championship standings after the raceEdit

  • Bold text indicates the World Champions.
  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.


  1. ^ "Motor Racing Programme Covers: 1996". The Programme Covers Project. Retrieved 11 November 2017.
  2. ^ "1996 Italian Grand Prix". formula1.com. Archived from the original on 1 November 2014. Retrieved 24 December 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Italy 1996 - Championship • STATS F1". www.statsf1.com. Retrieved 18 March 2019.

Previous race:
1996 Belgian Grand Prix
FIA Formula One World Championship
1996 season
Next race:
1996 Portuguese Grand Prix
Previous race:
1995 Italian Grand Prix
Italian Grand Prix Next race:
1997 Italian Grand Prix