Charles Leclerc delighted the Monza crowd with his Ferrari on pole position at the Italian Grand Prix.

Leclerc went all out on his final run at the Temple of Speed, sending Tifosi wild and Max Verstappen in second.

Verstappen is likely to line up for fourth place, and nine of the 20 world champions will be penalized for exceeding the number of allotted engine parts.

Carlos Sainz, Sergio Perez and Lewis Hamilton qualified 3rd, 4th and 5th respectively, but the trio also faced grid offenses. Hamilton will start from behind after having his fourth engine of the season.

George Russell finished sixth, but took advantage of the above penalty to join Leclerc on the front row. Lando Norris said he qualified 7th on the grid, but his McLaren will start in his 3rd place once the penalty is applied.

Hamilton’s yellow 44 beside his Mercedes turned black in honor of the Queen, and many tributes across the paddock were paid to the longtime monarch.

A minute’s silence was held before Friday’s practice, followed by another silence on the grid before Sunday’s race. Italian President Sergio Mattarella is expected to attend the ceremony.

Mattarella and most of the expected 125,000 fans on race day will have Leclerc cheering for Ferrari to stop Verstappen’s fourth straight win.

Verstappen is looking for his second world title in many seasons after winning 10 of the 15 rounds held so far.

Max Verstappen closes in on world title (David Davies/PA)

But 109 points behind the Red Bull driver, Leclerc will try to regain his pride in a season when Ferrari fell short of its initial promises due to human and machine mistakes.

The presence of Ferrari CEO John Elkann will increase the pressure on the team from Maranello, but Leclerc’s superb lap and Verstappen’s penalty will give Monaco a head start.

“Amazing,” said Leclerc. “It was not an easy qualifying session.

“I am very happy with my lap and I am very happy with my performance.

Charles Leclerc celebrating his pole position (David Davies/PA)

Red Bull’s Verstappen, after being booed by the Italian crowd, said:

“It was a good lap, I enjoyed it and it will be an interesting battle tomorrow.

Nick de Vries made his race debut in the eleventh hour after London-born Alex Albon ruled out the rest of the weekend with appendicitis.

The 27-year-old has taken part in three practice sessions this year, most recently with Aston Martin on Friday.

And the Dutch driver put in an impressive performance in his qualifying debut, qualifying ahead of the other Williams driver, Nicholas Latifi.

De Vries finished 13th, three places ahead of Latifi. He will be pushed up the starting order once grid sanctions apply.

Aston Martin’s furious season continued with Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll eliminated at the first hurdle.

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