Hamilton claims 1st pole position at Monaco

Lewis Hamilton has secured his first pole position at the Monaco Grand Prix on Saturday. The champion will start next to his teammate, Nico Rosberg, who has won the race the last two years.

Perhaps a Mercedes 1,2 isn’t a surprise but it did have me slightly concerned on Thursday as to the pace of the Williams F1 cars and it seems that pace was a reality on this circuit with a poor qualifying performance.

Ferrari managed to get Sebastian Vettel in third on the grid while the upside could be the track-induced gains that Red Bull and Toro Rosso have heading into Sunday’s race. Could either of those teams upset the running order?

If that wasn’t a feel-good story of the day, then perhaps Sergio Perez’s incredible performance in a struggling Force India is? The Mexican put his car in the seventh position and punched well above his weight but this circuit seems to favor Sergio’s style.

Sunday’s race could come down to the two Mercedes battling it out but with the new super-soft compound, passing could be slightly easier.

The final free practice session this morning was particularly important as the drivers (with the exception of Lotus’s Pastor Maldonado) had no previous experience of running the supersoft, due to rain in FP2. As a result, all the key race and qualifying simulations were concentrated into one hour this morning in conditions that were not particularly representative. Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, who will line up third on the grid tomorrow, was fastest on the supersoft in FP3. 

Carlos Sainz will start from pitlane due to a failure to enter the weighbridge area when told to do so and Romain Grosjean will start 16th due to a gearbox change.

PosDriverCarTimeGap
1Lewis HamiltonMercedes1m15.098s
2Nico RosbergMercedes1m15.440s0.342s
3Sebastian VettelFerrari1m15.849s0.751s
4Daniel RicciardoRed Bull/Renault1m16.041s0.943s
5Daniil KvyatRed Bull/Renault1m16.182s1.084s
6Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1m16.427s1.329s
7Sergio PerezForce India/Mercedes1m16.808s1.710s
8Carlos SainzToro Rosso/Renault1m16.931s1.833s
9Pastor MaldonadoLotus/Mercedes1m16.946s1.848s
10Max VerstappenToro Rosso/Renault1m16.957s1.859s
11Jenson ButtonMcLaren/Honda1m17.093s
12Nico HulkenbergForce India/Mercedes1m17.193s
13Felipe MassaWilliams/Mercedes1m17.278s
14Fernando AlonsoMcLaren/Honda1m26.632s
15Felipe NasrSauber/Ferrari1m18.101s
16Romain GrosjeanLotus/Mercedes1m17.007s
17Valtteri BottasWilliams/Mercedes1m18.434s
18Marcus EricssonSauber/Ferrari1m18.513s
19Will StevensMarussia/Ferrari1m20.655s
20Roberto MerhiMarussia/Ferrari1m20.904s
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My Friendly Atheist disqus acc

Did you know Max Verstappen is 17?! NBC told me so.

jakobusvdl

Really??? Thats amazing, thanks for sharing.
Do you think there will be any interesting ‘factoids’ when we get to Spa?

jakobusvdl

That was quite an interesting practice and qualifying for Monaco, We’re getting the full Sky UK coverage so get a lot more information about the track, teams, cars and drivers than I’ve been used to – it certainly adds to my interest and enjoyment of the race weekends. Q3 at Monaco really is do or die, and Hamilton certainly did, two epic laps put the car on pole. Rosberg nearly did enough, but lock up at Mirabeau was his problem again. The gap to the rest of the field is very disconcerting for the prospects of a close race for… Read more »

Chuck Voelter

Have I missed it or has there been no story about the Monaco GP results? Lewis’ engineers handing the race to Nico?

KMK90

I am pretty sure NC was at the indy 500 & a nascar race Sunday, I think he mentioned it on the podcast of May 17th. I bet we will get the podcast & review tomorrow