We are back in Monaco for the second European race of the season! It promised to be a thrilling race, since Max Verstappen started from the 20th place on the grid. The Dutchman couldn’t set a time during qualifying, because his MGU-K and gearbox were being replaced after his crash in FP3. On top of that, we had Ricciardo on pole followed by the two Ferrari’s and Hamilton.
Ricciardo had a very good start and kept his position. Verstappen overtook two drivers within the first lap. Meanwhile, Hartly lost his front wing causing a yellow flag in sector two, but not for long. Sirotkin recieved a ten second penalty, because he didn’t have his tyres on his car fifteen minutes before the start of the Grand Prix as it is said in the rules. The flying Dutchman climbed up to the 14th position in nine laps.
Stroll’s front wing and wheels were replaced very early, due to a collision with Ericsson. Both drivers were lucky to continue the race. Hamilton went for an undercut, by coming into the pits after only eleven laps. While Hartley recieved a five second grid penalty for speeding in the pit lane. Verstappen and Ricciardo caused a dramatic moment by reporting to the team over the radio that they had problems with their power unit. That way, Vettel closed up to the Honey Badger, but was still unable to overtake him. The other Red Bull-driver kept struggling behind Alonso.
Stroll had his second puncture halfway the race and fell back to the 20th position as a consequence. Gasly is very noteworthy since he drove about 38 laps with his Hyper Soft tyres. Verstappen was the last one to dive into the pits. He lost two positions with that and resumed his race as 11th with fresh Hyper Soft tyres. Alonso was the first one to retire due to a gearbox failure in the 54th lap.
We could enjoy a close battle between the two Renaults and Mad Max. Sainz let Hulkenberg through because of a teamorder, while Verstappen still had to battle with the Spaniard for the 9th position. The Dutchman hit Sainz at first, but overtook him later, though the went over the kerbs to be able to do that. The hell broke loose with only eight laps to go. Leclerc hit Hartley very hard in Nouvelle Chicane and caused a virtual safety car. Hartley was able to return to the pits, but couldn’t continue, while Leclerc was even unable to return to the pits.
Daniel Ricciardo won the Grand Prix of Monaco with Sebastian Vettel finishing second and Hamilton as third. The top ten was completed by Kimi Raikkonen, Valtteri Bottas, Esteban Ocon, Pierre Gasly, Nico Hulkenberg, Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz.
We are back in two weeks in Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix. Vettel and Hamilton will be eager to win again, to battle for their position in the championship, after Ricciardo’s phenomenal win.