Spy's Eye on: Italy

Right so, here we are 13 down 7 to go and Spy winging home from Italy to the loving embrace of Milton Keynes. Goodbye Monza, goodbye Royal Villa, hello Xscape, hello Nandos.

Monza is special. That's either a compliment or the other thing depending on Spy's mood. It's charming and quirky and annoying and chaotic in equal measure. People talk about the passion. But sometimes 'passion' is just another word for crazy.

It's also the most snappily-dressed grand prix of the year. Forget Monaco, it has nothing on this place. Some of the scruffiest people in the sport suddenly sprout blazers and suggest a newfound affinity with a comb, and everyone in an official capacity has an immaculate uniform and epaulettes, 'cos you're not anyone without epaulettes – or possibly a hat with unlikely feathers. Doesn't matter if you're the chief of the police or the kid on the back gate, gotta look sharp and do the strut at La Pista Magica.

That race was... well, what was it? Fourth and tenth is definitely below par, but it didn't feel that way afterwards. From starting 13th and 16th and Max having a puncture on the first lap, to getting both cars into the points at a race in which we had the proverbial 'snowball in Hell's chance is pretty good. Jaunty tunes were being whistled during pack down.

Max did very well to drag himself back into the points after being most of a lap down after a first corner bingle with Felipe Massa. Daniel meanwhile, excelled, driving a long, long stint to get himself up into contention, putting the frighteners on Sebastian Vettel (and 93,000 Italians) at the end.

Here's some valuable insight into the psyche of Daniel Ricciardo: he says he wants to win races – but really what he wants to do is overtake everybody. He sprang out of the car after the race like a jet-propelled chipmunk with a truly massive grin on his face. We half-expected him to jump up and down, clap his hands and shout "again, again." The boy did good.

Fans at home made him Driver of the Day, and fans at the circuit gave him a really good cheer too. Generally that's reserved for drivers wearing red – but they make an exception (admittedly limited) for Daniel. Lewis Hamilton didn't get the same courtesy on the podium. To Spy's mind that's not really fair. You don't have to cheer when the other guy wins but booing isn't really something Formula One needs. The drivers expect a volley from the crowd at Monza on the parade lap but after driving his socks off and winning fair and square Lewis deserved better. Still, he gave as good as he got with the sweet smile and the whole "Mercedes power is definitely better than Ferrari power," speech. Wonder if he got out alive?

Question that's being asked of us is, did we throw away a podium by taking engine penalties here? Well, against all likelihood, it's possible we did. Without taking the hit this weekend we could have finished third and fourth. It was still the right decision though. Don't misunderstand Spy, we love trophies – but what we love most is winning. We've got a good shot of that in Singapore and it's a better shot after the decisions taken this weekend. Hopefully next up it'll be our turn to give the tifosi something to boo.