Motor racing: Lewis Hamilton wins in Italy to take Formula One lead by three points over Sebastian Vettel

Mercedes' British driver Lewis Hamilton completing a lights-to-flag win at the Italian Formula One Grand Prix at the Autodromo Nazionale circuit in Monza on Sept 3, 2017.
Mercedes' British driver Lewis Hamilton completing a lights-to-flag win at the Italian Formula One Grand Prix at the Autodromo Nazionale circuit in Monza on Sept 3, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

MONZA, Italy (REUTERS, AFP) - Lewis Hamilton won the Italian Grand Prix for Mercedes on Sunday, with a dominant drive that sent the Briton clear at the top of the Formula One world championship for the first time in a year.

The three-time champion, who started the race from a record 69th career pole position, led Finnish team-mate Valtteri Bottas to a runaway one-two finish in front of the massed ranks of red-shirted Ferrari fans celebrating the Italian team’s 70th anniversary .

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel, who had led the standings ever since he won the Australian season-opener in March, finished third and 36.3 seconds behind the winner.

Hamilton (238 points) is now three points clear of the German, with seven races remaining. The next race is at Singapore's Marina Bay Street Circuit on Sept 17.

The win was his fourth at Monza and the 59th of his career.

Having won in Belgium last Sunday, Hamilton also became the first driver to score back-to-back victories this year. It was Mercedes’ third one-two this season and the team’s 39th overall.

Australian Daniel Ricciardo, who started 16th after incurring grid penalties, came home fourth for Red Bull ahead of Kimi Raikkonen in the second Ferrari, French rookie Esteban Ocon of Force India, Canadian teenager Lance Stroll and his Williams team-mate Felipe Massa.

Mexican Sergio Perez took ninth place in the second Force India ahead of Dutchman Max Verstappen, who had started 13th for Red Bull and suffered an early puncture.