WATCH LIVE: Italian GP qualifying – will it be ‘Magica’ for Lewis?

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After finishing fastest in the final practice session for the Italian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton will be gunning for his first pole position since the Spanish Grand Prix back in May in this afternoon’s qualifying session.

However, he will have to fend off the advances of teammate and championship rival Nico Rosberg, who was the fastest man in the second session on Friday afternoon when Hamilton was sidelined by an electrical issue.

You can watch qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 8am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.

Rosberg and Hamilton both had problems on their cars during the final practice session on Saturday morning, which will give Mercedes a few concerns ahead of the session this afternoon. Rosberg did not manage to post a lap time thanks to another electrical issue, and although Hamilton finished as the fastest man, but a DRS failure meant that he could not maximize the pace of the W05 car.

The chasing pack is certainly looking to cause an upset, though. Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen have run well for Ferrari in all of the sessions this weekend, even if many did not give them much hope heading to Monza. It will be interesting to see if the prancing horse can carry this form into qualifying on home soil.

Williams is the team that is expected to put up the most stringent challenge to Mercedes, given that the straight line speed of the FW36 is the best on the grid. Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa face a big ask to repeat their front-row lock-out from Austria, but it is by no means impossible.

Also keep an eye out for the other pretenders in the top ten, such as Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo, Jenson Button and Kevin Magnussen.

Monza is called “La Pista Magica” – the magic track – for a reason. It is a circuit that everyone wants to win at; starting from pole is a good way to go about it.

You can watch the complete qualifying session for the Italian Grand Prix live on NBCSN and Live Extra from 8am ET. CLICK HERE to watch via live stream.