Robert Kubica admitted that a delay during his pit-stop had been the crucial moment of the Italian Grand Prix after the Renault man had to settle for eighth place at Monza.

Kubica battled his way up to fifth place on the opening lap at Monza but pitted earlier than the cars around him in the race.

Unfortunatley for the Pole, a loss of time in the pits meant that he then found himself just behind Nico Hulkenberg when the Williams driver left the pits and a slight delay behind the German allowed Mark Webber to find a way through and Sebastian Vettel's late stop also saw him jump the Renault man - who finished eighth as a result.

"I got a great start and passed Hulkenberg off the line, then the two Red Bulls in the first chicane," he said. "After Hamilton went off, I was running fifth at the end of the first lap, and from that point on I was managing the gap to Rosberg in front and Hulkenberg behind.

"I knew that the pit stops would be crucial, and we took the decision to stop earlier than the cars around us. I think it was the right one, because from my out lap I was at least a second quicker, but unfortunately we had a slow stop and lost a couple of seconds. That meant Hulkenberg came out of the pits level with me, and we were wheel-to-wheel under braking. He took a defensive line through the chicane, which meant Webber also got a run on me through turn three, so I lost two positions.

"It's disappointing, but that was our pace this weekend. We're looking forward to a better performance in Singapore."

Team-mate Vitaly Petrov suffered before the start when he was hit with a five place grid penalty although the Russian battled hard to take the flag in 13th place at the finish.

"I knew it would be a hard race and, although I managed to pick up five positions on the first lap, it wasn't enough to get me near the points," he said. "It's very difficult to overtake here because the low downforce makes it tricky to get in the slipstream of another car. I think I did the maximum I could have hoped for this afternoon, but it was my first time here in Formula 1 and this weekend was all part of my learning curve. Hopefully, when I come here next year I won't need to learn anything; I'll just be able to show my best level of performance."


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