MONZA, Italy -- Ferrari's lack of pace at the Italian Grand Prix came from underestimating its home circuit, according to company chairman Sergio Marchionne.
Though Ferrari was able to recover some of the ground lost in a disappointing qualifying session, which limited its drivers to the third row, Sebastian Vettel finished best of the rest behind a dominant Mercedes one-two. The team's performance at the Belgian Grand Prix, where Vettel ran Lewis Hamilton close all race, had raised expectations of a challenge from the Prancing Horse.
Though Vettel's performance was a good example of damage limitations after a challenging Saturday qualifying in heavy rain, Marchionne said the team will need to investigate why it was so far off the pace.
"I think we just screwed up," Marchionne told German broadcaster RTL. "The set-up for the car was wrong. I think we underestimated the circuit.
"I think we screwed up from Belgium, from Spa, into here. Now, we need to go back to the factory and find out which way the car went sideways. But we will be back in Singapore."
Hamilton's victory saw him edge in front of Vettel in the drivers' championship, the first time the Ferrari man has not lead this season. With Kimi Raikkonen struggling home to fifth, Mercedes was also able to extend its lead in the constructors' championship to 62 points.
Mercedes' back-to-back victories are in line with the expectations most had coming out of F1's summer break, given that Spa and Monza are circuits which reward engines with good power output, an area the world champions are still the benchmark in.
The next leg of the season, in Asia, promises to be much more difficult to predict. Singapore, a circuit similar to Monaco and Budapest, should favour Ferrari, though Malaysia and Japan have enough high-speed corners that Mercedes should hold the advantage.