The 2000 Italian Grand Prix was a Formula One race held on September 10, 2000 at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza near Monza, Italy. It was the fourteenth race of the 2000 Formula One season. The event was marred by tragedy as a first lap accident claimed the life of a trackside marshal.
As the cars approached recently redesigned first chicane on the first lap, Eddie Irvine's Jaguar collided with both Saubers, causing Irvine's car to stall and force his retirement from the race. Ahead of this incident, a more significant accident was triggered when the Jordans of Jarno Trulli and Heinz-Harald Frentzen made heavy contact with each other at the second chicane and struck the cars of Rubens Barrichello and David Coulthard from behind. All four cars came to rest in the gravel runoff area. They were then joined by the Arrows of Pedro de la Rosa, who had struck the rear of Johnny Herbert's Jaguar with enough force to tear off the Jaguar's left rear wheel and make the Arrows airborne. As it entered the runoff area, de la Rosa's car clipped Coulthard's McLaren and landed immediately adjacent to Barrichello's Ferrari.
In the contact between the two Jordans, Frentzen's right front tire had made a long arc through the gravel, missing the other cars in the process. The five stranded drivers were able to climb from their cars without physical injury. Herbert's car avoided the gravel and he managed to limp back to the pits on the three remaining wheels.
However, the accident had tragic outcome. The right rear wheel from Heinz-Harald Frentzen's Jordan had been propelled towards the safety fence and struck fire marshal Paolo Ghislimberti in the chest. Ghislimberti was given a heart massage at the scene, but later died, becoming the first death in Formula One since Ayrton Senna. There were conflicting reports about Ghislimberti's age, but all seemed to indicate that he was between the ages of 30 and 35 when he died. He was survived by his pregnant wife, who received financial assistance from an auction of the drivers' racing overalls.
The race stewards chose not to stop the race, but to lead the remaining cars behind the safety car. This upset many drivers, Coulthard among them, who said the race should have been stopped given the seriousness of the fire marshal's situation. The safety car period continued for eleven laps, with Michael Schumacher leading and Mika Häkkinen in second position. Both were just ahead of the accident when it happened.
Schumacher and Häkkinen, both using one-stop strategies, then tried outpacing each other, but no matter how hard the Finn tried, his McLaren-Mercedes couldn't keep pace with the German's Ferrari. Schumacher went onto win the Italian Grand Prix for the third time in the last six years. It was his 41st career victory, putting him into a tie for second all-time with the late Senna. Häkkinen took second, with Ralf Schumacher placing third. With his 42nd victory at the 2000 United States Grand Prix two weeks later, Michael Schumacher would take sole possession of second all-time.
During the post-race press conference, Schumacher broke into tears before the worldwide television audience when asked if tying Senna meant a lot to him (he said it did). This was especially shocking, considering Schumacher's reputation as someone who doesn't show much emotion. He didn't answer another question during the TV unilaterals as he tried to regain his composure. As Schumacher had already mentioned the death of Ghislimberti, it is probable that this significantly influenced Schumacher's emotional state.
As a result of Ghislimberti's death, design plans for "tethers" to hold detached wheels in place were put forward and later accepted, to stop flying tyres being a danger to the drivers, safety officials and fans.
|13||18||Pedro de la Rosa||Arrows-Supertec||1:17.279||+1.647|
|7||17||Mika Salo||Sauber-Petronas||52||+1 Lap||15|
|8||16||Pedro Diniz||Sauber-Petronas||52||+1 Lap||16|
|9||20||Marc Gené||Minardi-Fondmetal||52||+1 Lap||21|
|10||21||Gastón Mazzacane||Minardi-Fondmetal||52||+1 Lap||22|
|11||11||Giancarlo Fisichella||Benetton-Playlife||52||+1 Lap||9|
|12||14||Jean Alesi||Prost-Peugeot||51||+2 Laps||19|
|Ret||15||Nick Heidfeld||Prost-Peugeot||15||Spun off||20|
|Ret||10||Jenson Button||Williams-BMW||10||Spun off||12|
|Ret||18||Pedro de la Rosa||Arrows-Supertec||0||Collision||10|
|Ret||7||Eddie Irvine||Jaguar-Cosworth||0||Spun off||14|
"2000 Italian Grand Prix". The Official Formula 1 Website. http://www.formula1.com/results/season/2000/64/. Retrieved 2007-08-03.
"2000 Italian GP: Classification". ChicaneF1.com. http://www.chicanef1.com/race.pl?year=2000&gp=Italian%20GP&type=res. Retrieved 2007-08-03.
2000 Belgian Grand Prix
|FIA Formula One World
2000 United States Grand Prix
1999 Italian Grand Prix
|Italian Grand Prix||Next race:
2001 Italian Grand Prix