Autodromo Nazionale di Monza, located just north of Milan in Italy, is a notoriously fast circuit and the traditional home of the Italian Grand Prix. The track was incredibly fast and similar to an oval, with only one left corner (Ascari) and 4 right handers. Chicanes were introduced in the early 70s to slow the cars down, but they did not prevent David Coulthard to reach 362 km/h in 1999. Hakkinen achieved an average speed of 252 km/h for the entire lap.
Track length: 5.79 km, 11 corners
Approximate laptime: 1m43s (F3)
iGPFun-F3 Laps: 26 ; 150.5 km 40.0+ liters
F3 Officials Laps: 14 ; 81.0 km
Fuel consumption: ~1.49 liters per lap
Suggested downforce (F3): Monza is absolutely flat and fast as a bullet. Cars have been known to remove the rear wing in real life. Monza is one of the few tracks in the iRacing F3 where using a Low Down Force configuration (LDF) can work. A differential allowing maximum control under braking and acceleration from slow speed can also help.
Demo Lap video at the end of the page (TBA)
Passing zones are color coded in the image above.
Red: do not attack here, too dangerous or tactical suicide
Orange: attacking is risky and not recommended. Likely to have a crash or lose a lot of speed.
Yellow: you may attack here but there are better places, either due to danger of crashing or for tactical reasons
Green: good passing places
Monza, we all know it. Passing is easy and safe, but if you take risks, dive bomb or refuse to give up even if beaten, races can easily become a crash feast. Please remember that being ahead at every single corner is not important; what matters is being ahead at the end of the race. Sometimes it is much better to work with your opponents rather than fight them, in order to catch somebody ahead or keep a gap from cars behind.
First Chicane (Prima Variante)
Draft on the long straight, attack under braking either on the inside or outside, they can both work. Entry to the chicane is sharp and running too much over the curb will give you a black flag. As a defender, it is often better to concede the corner and regain the position later rather than forcing a side by side. As an attacker, you must avoid late dives. No reason to take risks, you will have another passing opportunity very soon.
Please be aware that you will reach the braking zone with a much higher speed if you are in a draft; you need to adjust your braking point accordingly.
Second Chicane (Variante della Roggia)
Same considerations as per the first chicane. The curbs are an added danger at Roggia: they can easily send your car in the air, often making you lose control. Cars stranded in the middle of the Roggia chicane are a typical problem in lap 1. Try to avoid it.
Turn 6 and 7 Right (Lesmo 1 and 2)
There is no reason to attempt a pass at Lesmo under normal racing conditions. You will only slow down everyone, a lot. Contacts are also rather common when attempting side by side through these corners with narrow racing line. There are much easier places to attack your opponents, use them.
Ascari Chicane (Variante Ascari)
Contrary to what many believe, this is not a passing place. Little braking and a very fast entry into a series of corners with a very narrow line. Passing attempts here end up in tears more often than not. Concentrate on getting a fast exit and you will get yourself an easy pass on the following straight.
Turn 11 Right (Parabolica)
This is a safe passing place; it is yellow purely for tactical reasons. Attacking entering the Parabolica can open you up to a counter-attack on the start-finish straight, in addition to losing speed by going side by side through the corner. Conversely, hanging back on entry and getting a good exit will allow you to pass on the start-finish straight with the help of a draft. Setup, race situation and personal preference dictate the choice.
Suggested rule of thumb. Attack at Parabolica if you have a great exit from Ascari and can easily complete the pass before the braking zone, getting ahead of your opponent and on the inside. Otherwise concentrate on the exit and attack on the start-finish straight.
Final note: on the last lap you will not have enough track to pass your opponent on exit, before the finish line. If you want to pass somebody you will have to do it into Parabolica.