After five 1, 2 finishes so far this season and a front row lockout from Mercedes for Sunday’s Monaco Grand Prix, you might be forgiven for thinking this was going to be another Mercedes dominating duo on the top step of the podium. If you did, you were half correct as Lewis Hamilton managed to stave off a charging Max Verstappen for the win in the principality.

Lewis drove a superb race with a good start that was then paired with a tire strategy that left him vulnerable to Verstappen’s attacks for nearly the entirety of his second stint on Medium compound tires. Managing graining, and serious lack of grip that would normally have cost him a the win on any other track, Lewis took victory while his teammate, Valtteri Bottas, was jumped during a stacked pits stop and suffered a cut tire to come home third behind Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari.

Win

A win for Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes and the memory of Niki Lauda. Lewis was on the back foot with graining tires with his nearest rivals breathing down his neck for the entirety of his second stint. Lewis managed the pace, kept Max behind him and even though he was upset with the tire choice the team made, he was able to nurse it home with a very inspired drive in honor of Niki Lauda. Mercedes had fitted both drivers with Medium tires, perhaps banking on rain, while Ferrari and Red Bull put the Hard compounds on for the duration of the race. Lewis helped Mercedes avoid a possible fail in Monaco.

A win for Sebastian Vettel who didn’t suffer the tire graining that Max and Lewis did which meant he couldn’t get heat in his tires to find the optimum tire performance. Regardless, he managed his race behind Max knowing that the Dutchman was getting a penalty and brought he car home behind Verstappen to inherit 2nd place ahead of Bottas.

A win for Max and Red Bull even though they garnered a penalty for unsafe release in the pits which allowed them to jump Bottas. Max drove a solid race and ended up 4th just ahead of his teammate, Pierre Gasly, for a dual-points finish.

A big win for Carlos Sainz who took advantage of the safety car period by not pitting and came home ebst of the rest which is a place that McLaren seem comfortable fighting for these days and that’s a big move forward for the team.

A win for Toro Rosso who also chose not to pit during the safety car and finished just behind Sainz for 7th and 8th place for some seriously needed points and inspired drives from both Daniil Kvyat and Alex Albon.

Renault should be fighting for best of the rest but the car has let them down so far this year but that didn’t stop Daniel Ricciardo from grabbing it by the scruff of the neck and hauling it into the points for a 9th place finish.

Can we say it is a slight win for George Russell finishing ahead of Lance Stroll, Kimi Raikkonen, Robert Kubica and Antonio Giovinazzi?

Fail

A fail for several drivers/teams who got caught out by pitting during the safety car such as Haas F1’s Kevin Magnussen, Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg and McLaren’s Lando Norris. Like any safety car period, some drivers gain and some drivers lose.

A fail for Racing Point who couldn’t get either car in the points and there are few better than Sergio Perez at managing tires but he still couldn’t make any headway in Monaco while his teammate, Lance Stroll, managed to get in a few folks way on his path to 16th.

A fail for Alfa Romeo who had a miserable weekend with Kimi Raikkonen finishing 17th after becoming a mobile chicane for the rest of the field on his long first stint and Antonio Giovinazzi dropping back to last.

WTH

Not quite sure what Mercedes were thinking with strategy on the Medium compounds but I am sure it made sense from their perspective even though it seemed wrong from the get go. Perhaps they were banking on rain but I haven’t heard the justification yet. I’m sure they’ll let us know.

I feel for Charles Leclerc but I am not sure why he wasn’t told to slow down in a big way when he punctured his tire to prevent him from destroying the underfloor of his car on the way back to the pits. He had nothing to lose and Ferrari made the right choice to retire the car but still, a miserable weekend for Ferrari and Leclerc.

Monaco GP results

POS DRIVER CAR LAPS GAP
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 78 1h43m28.437s
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 78 2.602s
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 78 3.162s
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Honda 78 5.537s
5 Pierre Gasly Red Bull/Honda 78 9.946s
6 Carlos Sainz Jr. McLaren/Renault 78 53.454s
7 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso/Honda 78 54.574s
8 Alexander Albon Toro Rosso/Honda 78 55.200s
9 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 78 1m00.894s
10 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 78 1m01.034s
11 Lando Norris McLaren/Renault 78 1m06.801s
12 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 77 1 Lap
13 Sergio Perez Racing Point/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
14 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 77 1 Lap
15 George Russell Williams/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
16 Lance Stroll Racing Point/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
17 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 77 1 Lap
18 Robert Kubica Williams/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
19 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 76 2 Laps
Charles Leclerc Ferrari 16 Accident damage

Driver’s Championship

POS DRIVER POINTS
1 Lewis Hamilton 137
2 Valtteri Bottas 120
3 Sebastian Vettel 82
4 Max Verstappen 78
5 Charles Leclerc 57
6 Pierre Gasly 32
7 Carlos Sainz Jr. 18
8 Kevin Magnussen 14
9 Sergio Perez 13
10 Kimi Raikkonen 13
11 Lando Norris 12
12 Daniil Kvyat 9
13 Daniel Ricciardo 8
14 Alexander Albon 7
15 Nico Hulkenberg 6
16 Lance Stroll 4
17 Romain Grosjean 2
18 Antonio Giovinazzi 0
19 George Russell 0
20 Robert Kubica 0

Constructor’s Championship

POS CONSTRUCTOR POINTS
1 Mercedes 257
2 Ferrari 139
3 Red Bull/Honda 110
4 McLaren/Renault 30
5 Racing Point/Mercedes 17
6 Haas/Ferrari 16
7 Toro Rosso/Honda 16
8 Renault 14
9 Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 13
10 Williams/Mercedes 0

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subcritical71
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subcritical71

A WTH for the stewards of the race. Causing a collision on track was a 10 sec penalty, doing so in the pit lane due to an unsafe release was only 5(!).

Fabio
Member
Fabio

Gotta try and keep interest in the race, 10 sec penalty would have viewers switching off (assuming they hadn’t fallen asleep yet).

Peter Riva
Member
Peter Riva

I’m chuckling away… I was actually asleep and ESPN ran blank commercials during the Le Clerc debacle. And everyone who is SOOOO excited about this race have to talk about tires and also-ran teams. Honestly, was there EVER oiubt Hamilton would jot win? No, it was assured and today’s Autosport and others are saying so. Another snore (and more than 1/3 of all commercials running blank).

subcritical71
Member
subcritical71

Isn’t the commercials running blank a streaming vs cable issue? I have YTTV and did not have any commercials during the race.

jtr
Member
jtr

I watch the races on ESPN here in the states and they don’t even run commercials during the race. The only time I see commercials is if I miss the main broadcast and catch a rerun later in the day; then they DO sporadically cut to commercial during the race.

Nige
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Nige

I am soooooo tired of these engines!!! Imagine how much more interesting it would be if drivers could actually push their machinery instead of having an IT Hobbit come on the radio and tell them to turn the engine down?! Vettel should be able to take risks and blow up his motor if need be to attempt a win…..instead we have egg heads managing it all for him. I’m just sick of it.

Xean45
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Xean45

Headline should read, “Hamilton Wins for Lauda, Despite Trying to Lose for Himself”

Lars Nielsen
Member
Lars Nielsen

Or maybe “Hamilton leads Monaco Grand Parade”…

jtr
Member
jtr

The constant braying from Hamilton about the state of his tires was pretty funny. He really seemed to be the only person in Monaco who didn’t understand that he could win the race just by clogging the track and letting the overly-tight circuit keep Verstappen behind him. His post-race interview had him in rare form too; only Lewis could win a race and then give a statement about how pissed off he was about the race strategy, and also for some reason bring up that he was still mad about losing the 2007 Chinese Grand Prix. I guess when you… Read more »

subcritical71
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subcritical71

Fabio
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Fabio

Different view of the Perez v Marshalls.

Fabio
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Fabio

Damage to Bottas’ wheel after Max hit him.comment image