Webber makes it six winners from six races

Mark Webber put in a masterful drive and resisted a five-car train behind him to scored his second Monaco Grand Prix victory and become the sixth winner in six races.

This impressive statistic is unprecedented in the sport’s rich history, but the Australian’s latest triumph did make Red Bull Racing the first team to notch up a repeat win this season.

Nico Rosberg gave chase to the leading Red Bull throughout the 78-lap race but had little to challenge. Second place is still a solid result for himself and Mercedes.

Completing the Monaco podium is Fernando Alonso. The Ferrari driver now leads the world championship with 76 points.

Thanks to an inspired race strategy from Red Bull, Sebastian Vettel finished in an excellent fourth ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa. The top six were covered by only 6.2 seconds at the chequered flag.

Pole position starter Webber held off Rosberg’s Mercedes away from the grid, then remained ahead through the sole pit-stop sequence, despite Rosberg going for fresh tyres earlier.

Vettel brought himself into contention by getting up to sixth at the start, and then stayed out until lap 45 before switching from softs to the supersofts.

Lapping 1.5 seconds faster compared to the others while leading, the defending champion was able to emerge from his pit-stop in fourth ahead of Hamilton, who had lost out to Alonso in the pits.

Rain had threatened all race, and became slightly heavier going into the final eight laps, just as the leaders’ tyres began to fade.

That brought the top six even closer together, with Rosberg, Alonso, Vettel, Hamilton and Massa – in his strongest drive of the year so far – suddenly right on Webber’s tail.

But as the drizzle eased again, the pace increased and Webber was able to wrap up his first win of this year.

A first corner crash eliminated a potential podium contender with Lotus’s Romain Grosjean tangling with Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes, breaking the front suspension and sending it spinning across the pack at Sainte Devote.

Remarkably none of the front-runners hit it, but Kamui Kobayashi was not so lucky. His Sauber became airborne and would later retired with suspension damage. Further back, Spanish Grand Prix winner Pastor Maldonado ran into Pedro de la Rosa and was forced to retire.

Schumacher was able to continue and ran in seventh place until fuel pressure problems forced him into the pits and out of the race.

Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne then picked up that position – a very early pit-stop on lap 18 having given him chance to run in clean air and vault up the order. But a decision to pit for intermediates in the late shower was a big mistake and dropped him out of the points.

Finishing in seventh and eighth were the Force Indias of Paul di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg, with Kimi Raikkonen taking ninth ahead of Bruno Senna.

The Iceman lost time when his tyres dramatically faded in the first stint and he then spent a while trapped behind Charles Pic’s Marussia following his pit-stop.

Jenson Button failed to make any progress in the McLaren. After taking to the escape road to avoid the Sainte Devote mayhem, he spent most of the race trying to pass Heikki Kovalainen’s Caterham, eventually spinning in the Swimming Pool complex in his efforts, and retiring soon after.

Kovalainen had been on course for eleventh, but had to pit with front wing damage amid a fraught battle with Sauber’s Sergio Perez, so fell to P13 behind Vergne.

It wasn’t a classic Monaco Grand Prix with a high speed train of cars. As each driver was managing their tyres. The lack of overtaking made it difficult around the streets of the Principality and yet it was a close and tense race. Six new winners in the past six events? Awesome.

Monaco Grand Prix race results, 78 laps:

1.  Webber        Red Bull-Renault           1h46:06.557
2.  Rosberg       Mercedes                   +0.643
3.  Alonso        Ferrari                    +0.947
4.  Vettel        Red Bull-Renault           +1.343
5.  Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes           +4.101
6.  Massa         Ferrari                    +6.195
7.  Di Resta      Force India-Mercedes       +41.537
8.  Hulkenberg    Force India-Mercedes       +42.562
9.  Raikkonen     Lotus-Renault              +44.036
10.  Senna         Williams-Renault           +44.516
11.  Perez         Sauber-Ferrari             +1 lap
12.  Vergne        Toro Rosso-Ferrari         +1 lap
13.  Kovalainen    Caterham-Renault           +1 lap
14.  Glock         Marussia-Cosworth          +1 lap
15.  Karthikeyan   HRT-Cosworth               +2 laps

Fastest lap: Perez, 1:17.298

Not classified/retirements:

Button        McLaren-Mercedes             71 laps
Ricciardo     Toro Rosso-Ferrari           66 laps
Pic           Marussia-Cosworth            65 laps
Schumacher    Mercedes                     64 laps
Petrov        Caterham-Renault             16 laps
Kobayashi     Sauber-Ferrari               6 laps
De la Rosa    HRT-Cosworth                 1 lap
Maldonado     Williams-Renault             1 lap
Grosjean      Lotus-Renault                1 lap

World Championship standings, round 6:

1.  Alonso        76
2.  Vettel        73
3.  Webber        73
4.  Hamilton      63
5.  Rosberg       59
6.  Raikkonen     51
7.  Button        45
8.  Grosjean      35
9.  Maldonado     29
10.  Perez         22
11.  Di Resta      21
12.  Kobayashi     19
13.  Senna         15
14.  Massa         10
15.  Hulkenberg     7
16.  Vergne         4
17.  Schumacher     2
18.  Ricciardo      2

1.  Red Bull-Renault          146
2.  McLaren-Mercedes          108
3.  Ferrari                    86
4.  Lotus-Renault              86
5.  Mercedes                   61
6.  Williams-Renault           44
7.  Sauber-Ferrari             41
8.  Force India-Mercedes       28
9.  Toro Rosso-Ferrari          6

Next race: Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal. June 8-10.

16 thoughts to “Webber makes it six winners from six races”

  1. After winning his second Monaco Grand Prix, Red Bull Racing driver Mark Webber described the feeling as “incredible”. Autosport.com has the story.

    Monaco Grand Prix winner Mark Webber said surviving the additional challenges of changing weather and tyre strategies made his second Monte Carlo victory an ‘incredible’ experience.

    Webber held the lead for most of the race, fending off a five-car train of pursuers amid drizzle on slick tyres in the final laps.

    The Australian said wondering when it might rain made all pit strategies a gamble, but he was able to fend off main rival Nico Rosberg despite the Mercedes pitting for fresh tyres earlier.

    “I’m feeling incredible. It was a very interesting race,” said Webber. “It was reasonably straightforward at the start, getting the gap on the super softs and just managing with Nico. We had a bit of a gap over the rest so both of us were getting away and trying to get into a reasonable gap.

    “The weather was threatening around that pitstop window – we didn’t know whether to go a bit longer and put on a set of inters. Nico went for the undercut so a few people had to react to his chess move.”

    Webber’s team-mate Sebastian Vettel then became a threat for victory as he ran long on soft tyres and pulled away while the erstwhile leaders struggled for tyre temperature on the new softs they had just taken on at their stops. Ultimately Webber got up to speed and Vettel could only get fourth place.

    “The next stage of the race was very strange as it was hard to get the soft tyre warmed up,” said Webber. “Seb had his [tyres] in and it wasn’t really wearing down that much and he was coming back into the picture with his strategy.

    “I thought it was getting interesting and didn’t want Seb to get the magic 20 seconds so he could do the stop and get the victory, that wasn’t part of the plan.”

    The rain finally came with eight laps to go, and Webber had to hang on with Rosberg, Fernando Alonso, Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Felipe Massa right behind him as they coped with both a slippery surface and traffic.

    “Fernando said in the car coming across here that there were times when he was praying for rain, then when it started he was like ‘no, no, no’,” Webber joked.

    “I think it was like that for all of us except me because for the first guy there it is always tricky.”

  2. After challenging the race leader throughout the 78-lap Monaco Grand Prix, Nico Rosberg had to settle for second position but the Mercedes driver believes he had the best car. Autosport.com has the details.

    Nico Rosberg believes he had the best car during the Monaco Grand Prix, but conceded he could do nothing to overtake Mark Webber.

    Rosberg started from second position behind Webber, who made a good start from pole to keep his lead.

    The Australian managed to keep his Mercedes rival at bay despite intense pressure, Rosberg crossing the finish line 0.6 seconds behind Webber’s Red Bull.

    Rosberg was very happy with the result despite not managing to pass Webber for the lead.

    “My engineer and my team gave me a great start, I got away really well,” said Rosberg. “We were miles ahead of everyone else but I was not able to get him. After that, Mark drove a great race, very controlled.

    “In general it has been a good weekend for me and team. I think I had the best car, that is my feeling. That is really cool and let’s hope there is a lot more to come in the next few races.”

    Rosberg, who scored his maiden Formula 1 win earlier this year in China, said being on the podium in Monte Carlo was very special for him.

    “It is very special to be up here, and it is great the way to the podium was my way to school, so I am very happy,” he said.

    Despite the nature of the circuit, Rosberg admitted he was hopeful he would be able to pass Webber, but said his tyres were gone by the end of the race.

    “I was hoping I would get the chance but my tyres were really struggling too. I had Fernando [Alonso] behind me. At times it was very difficult. The tyres lost temperature, and they then picked up towards the end.”

  3. As for Fernando Alonso, who now leads the world championship after finishing in third position, has said that this result in Monaco means goals has been achieved. Autosport.com has the news.

    Fernando Alonso reckons third place means he achieved his target from the Monaco Grand Prix, which was to finish ahead of his closest championship rivals Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton.

    The Ferrari driver is now in the sole lead of the world championship, with 76 points, ahead Vettel and Monaco winner Mark Webber, who are both on 73.

    And while a second Monaco victory escaped Alonso by less than a second, the Spaniard said he was satisfied from his weekend’s haul.

    “Our target was to finish in front of Sebastian and Lewis – they were with us in the world championship and if you go race-by-race you concentrate on different drivers,” he said afterwards. “The next one will be Mark, who is now second in the championship.

    “It will be interesting this season with the see constant development of the car and the constant surprises that we are having every race. You never know which one is for pole or race win.”

    Alonso admitted that he was lucky to emerge unscathed from the fracas at the start which eliminated Lotus driver Romain Grosjean and mixed up the order behind, bringing Vettel, who started ninth into contention.

    “I had a fantastic start, so in the first ten metres I was side by side with Romain and I was passing Lewis [Hamilton] as well who was third,” he said. “They went close to each other and I put the car in the middle and I think I touched with Romain with my rear left and his right front.

    “After that touch he spun, so were lucky that nothing was damaged in the car. After that spin of Romain I think the positions mixed a little bit because I saw Vettel like position five or six – so people were helped and some people gained advantage.

    “Everything went smooth after the start – at that point I thought maybe the car was damaged or something – but it was fine,” he added. “I felt good, I felt competitive, but obviously in Monaco it is difficult to manage the traffic.

    “We overtook Hamilton at the stop with perfect time and perfect stop again, so thanks to team we are in a privileged position.”

  4. Lewis Hamilton ended the Monaco Grand Prix frustrated with both his start and his pitstop after his third place on the grid became only a fifth position finish.

    The McLaren driver could not keep up with leaders Mark Webber (Red Bull) and Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) in the first stint, was jumped by Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari when both pitted early on, and then found Sebastian Vettel rejoining ahead of him as Red Bull executed an alternative strategy for the world champion.

    “It wasn’t the best result. But this is motor racing. I really dislike going backwards,” said Hamilton.

    “But we still came away with some points and there are many, many more races ahead of us so we just have to keep our heads up and keep pushing.”

    He warned that McLaren, which has not had a podium finish since China in April, had to react fast.

    “I think the team have definitely got some work to do because we are falling behind race by race,” said Hamilton. “The others are picking up some serious pace. If we’re not lucky then it will fall away from us.”

    Hamilton was particularly disgruntled about his start. Although he did not lose any positions, he felt a chance to gain ground had been missed.

    “My start was one of the worst starts I’ve had in a long time,” he said. “I just don’t understand why it happened when the two guys next to me and the guy behind me got perfect starts. I was very, very fortunate not to get caught up in the crash.

    “We do thousands and thousands of starts through the year so it should not be a problem.”

    The Briton was also keen to understand how he had lost ground during the pit sequences.

    “I don’t know how long my pitstop was but I lost quite a lot of time,” said Hamilton.

    “I just wasn’t able to really keep up with Alonso, and Sebastian got me through his pitstop, and then it didn’t seem possible to overtake.”

    Source: Autosport.com

  5. It was a frustrating race for Jenson Button too with the McLaren driver unimpressed by Heikki Kovalainen’s defensive driving during Monaco Grand Prix. Autosport.com has the story.

    Jenson Button felt Heikki Kovalainen ‘got the balance wrong’ as the Caterham driver held off Button’s McLaren for most of the Monaco Grand Prix.

    Kovalainen got up to 13th amid the startline crash, while Button had to go wide to avoid Kamui Kobayashi’s flying Sauber and found himself behind the Caterham.

    Although Button ran eight laps longer before his pitstop, he still rejoined behind Kovalainen again.

    As their battle became more fraught late on – and was joined by Daniel Ricciardo’s Toro Rosso and Sergio Perez’s Sauber – Button spun at the second part of the Swimming Pool, caught Kovalainen again, then retired after sustaining a puncture in another passing attempt.

    “Heikki was so slow, but he’s very good at placing his car, and if you place your car in the right place, you can’t overtake,” said Button.

    “I think he was looking in his mirrors more than looking forward, but that’s his choice and it makes my life very difficult.”

    Button also said Kovalainen repeatedly cut the chicane while holding him off.

    “It is [frustrating] when he doesn’t get a penalty for it and it just slows us all down,” said the Briton.

    “When I did get down the outside of him at the chicane he just kept moving across and it was like ‘OK, I’m up against the wall now and we’re touching wheels…’

    “There has to be a balance when you’re fighting for 12th place and I don’t think he had it right, but there you go, that’s racing.”

    Despite his frustration at Kovalainen, Button openly admitted that his main issue had been qualifying only 13th.

    “It all comes from a bad qualifying and then being unlucky at the start,” he said. “But if you’re in the middle of the pack you’re more prone to incidents.”

    Button said that as his race had been so bad, having to retire was no loss.

    “At least I didn’t have to do the last eight laps and feel pain for even longer, that’s one way of looking at it,” he said.

  6. Jean-Eric Vergne said he was forced to pit for new tyres near the end of the Monaco Grand Prix because the Pirellis he was using were simply too worn out, rather than because Toro Rosso was gambling on rain.

    The Frenchman was running strongly in seventh position in his first Formula 1 race in Monaco when he pitted for intermediate tyres with just six laps to go.

    The move did not pay off, however, as there was insufficient rain to make his tyres work, and the Toro Rosso driver dropped down to 12th position.

    “I ran at a very good pace, which I am happy about and I was as high as seventh,” said Vergne. “I was lapping quickly and consistently. But with around 14 laps to the end, my tyres were completely gone and I had to come in for the intermediates, but the rain was not strong enough.

    “It’s a real shame about the laps I lost in traffic at the start because without that I could have been comfortably in the points today.

    “I am looking forward to Canada, as it’s a track I particularly like even if I have not been there and I will go there really hungry to get a good result.”

    Team boss Franz Tost said the squad had no choice but to make Vergne stop for new tyres when he did.

    “As he had very little grip on the worn tyres, we brought him to fit the intermediates on lap 71, but the rain which would have helped him fight for tenth place did not come soon enough,” he said.

    Source: Autosport.com

  7. It was a strong drive by Caterham’s Heikki Kovalainen. The Finn finished the Monaco Grand Prix in P12 resisted huge pressure from Jenson Button. Autosport.com has the details.

    Heikki Kovalainen’s strong Monaco Grand Prix run has left the Caterham team more optimistic than ever about its Formula 1 potential, according to boss Tony Fernandes.

    Kovalainen was running 12th place in Monte Carlo, having made good progress through the first-corner crash, then held Jenson Button’s McLaren at bay – remaining ahead even after Button had eight additional laps to try and build a gap before their pitstops.

    Button ultimately retired following an incident with Kovalainen, who later had to pit for repairs to wing damage sustained in a clash with Sauber’s Sergio Perez, although he got back out to take 13th position.

    “That was one of the most tense but most exciting races we have had since we came into the sport just two and a half years ago, and to be not only racing Jenson’s McLaren, but to be keeping him behind us and to be able to resist his attacks is a huge achievement for a team that is still young, still growing and hungrier than ever to succeed,” said Fernandes.

    “In fact, when Heikki passed Jenson out of the pits that was definitely the most exciting moment in my Formula 1 career and something that I will remember forever.”

    He added: “I am an optimist and our pitwall is full of people who would call themselves realists – I would probably say they are pessimists – but after today I have never seen so many pessimists so optimistic about the future. A great day for sure.”

    Kovalainen is confident his Monaco performance will not be a one-off.

    “This type of track was always going to give us the chance to fight, I’d said that before the race, and it was really good fighting with Jenson for as long as I did, keeping him behind me and really pushing,” he said.

    “We have more to come from this car throughout the season, so I think we have more races like this to look forward to, and results like today make all the hard work the whole team put in worth it.”

    Caterham’s technical director Mark Smith was confident that Kovalainen would have been able to hold on ahead of his rivals and take what would have been 11th place but for the clashes.

    “When the rain started falling we saw Heikki’s brake temperatures starting to drop and he was telling us the car was harder to control, but had Perez not hit him and caused his front wing failure I am sure he would have retained that place – he was clearly in a very determined mood and driving to the level everyone knows he can,” Smith said.

  8. Ferrari boss Stefano Domenicali has suggested his team is not planning to lodge a protest against Red Bull after the Monaco Grand Prix.

    There was speculation after the race that rival teams would protest the legality of Red Bull’s floor design.

    Ferrari, McLaren and Mercedes are believed to have questioned the design of a ‘hole’ in the floor ahead of the rear wheels of Red Bull’s car. Domenicali said, however, there were no plans to protest the design in Monaco.

    “At the moment there is no indication that that is the intention,” said Domenicali.

    Red Bull boss Christian Horner said it would be a shame it someone protested, but insisted he is convinced there is nothing illegal about his cars.

    “I’d be disappointed if there was,” Horner told Sky. “It would be a shame for that to happen after the race, but we are totally confident that the car complies with the rules.

    “We have got clarification that the technical director agrees with our interpretation. You know, we are totally comfortable with the car we have entered here, we’ve run it like this for other races as well. So we will see, but it will be disappointing if there was.”

    Source: Autosport.com

  9. Force India drivers hail team’s showing after scoring points in the Monaco Grand Prix. Autosport.com

    Paul di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg were full of praise for their Force India team after converting midfield starting positions into seventh and eighth place finishes in the Monaco Grand Prix.

    Di Resta came through from 14th on the grid to seventh as he made a long first stint strategy work very effectively.

    “We went aggressive with the strategy and I have to say the team really optimised it,” he said.

    “The secret was managing the tyres and trying to find clean air when we could.

    “The car felt really good, much stronger than yesterday, and that allowed me to push when we needed to.”

    Hulkenberg had started three places ahead of di Resta but was on the opposite strategy and lost too much time stuck behind Kimi Raikkonen’s Lotus.

    “For the first few laps I was running with Michael [Schumacher] and we were stuck behind Kimi who was struggling on the super softs, but it was difficult to get by,” said Hulkenberg.

    “Unfortunately Kimi stopped on the same lap as me so I remained behind him and we came out in a lot of traffic, which is when Paul jumped ahead of me.

    “The rest of the race was quite uneventful and I just focused on looking after the tyres. It’s a great result for the team and we should be happy with the result.”

  10. Kimi Raikkonen believes Lotus has no reason to worry about its form despite a disappointing Monaco Grand Prix.

    The Finn, who had finished on the podium in the last two races, could only be ninth around the streets of the principality.

    The Lotus driver finished over 44 seconds off race winner Mark Webber.

    Despite the poor showing in Monte Carlo, however, Raikkonen feelsthere is no reason to be worried, as the street circuit does not show the real picture.

    “Ninth was the best we could do today,” said Raikkonen. “I didn’t start in a great position and I had some difficulties during the race so it’s not been the easiest weekend, but at least we got a couple of points. It’s better than nothing but not exactly what we wanted.

    “One race doesn’t change the fact that we have been pretty strong everywhere – even here at the beginning of the weekend. This circuit is completely different from any other and I don’t think we should worry too much about the fact that it wasn’t our best weekend.

    “It is what it is – sometimes it doesn’t go the way you expected and now we should look to Canada for a better result.”

    Team-mate Romain Grosjean couldn’t manage a single lap after he crashed out of the race at the start.

    “We struggled to get off the line and it looked like Lewis [Hamilton] in front didn’t have the best start either,” he said. “Fernando [Alonso] pulled alongside him so I was then on the outside of both cars, and unfortunately Michael [Schumacher] was on the outside of me as well.

    “There just wasn’t enough room and next thing I’m facing all the traffic after just one hundred metres which wasn’t a nice feeling. It’s a disappointing end to the week after some positive early signs, but that’s racing and now we look forward to Canada and a chance to bounce back.”

    Source: Autosport.com

  11. This was the most competitive showing from Felipe Massa this season. The Ferrari driver was able to keep up with his team-mate Fernando Alonso. The Brazilian was able to finish in a solid sixth. Autosport.com has the story.

    Felipe Massa believes his improved pace in Monaco can act as a springboard to an upturn that might be enough to save his Ferrari career.

    The Brazilian is widely expected to be dropped at the end of 2012 after seven seasons with Ferrari, having struggled to match team-mate Fernando Alonso and following a poor start to this year’s Formula 1 season.

    In Monaco, Massa reached Q3 for the first time in 2012 and took only his second points finish of the year. But the Brazilian was mainly satisfied with how close he had been to the leaders, as he was part of a six-car train battling for victory.

    Asked by AUTOSPORT if he thought he could still keep his Ferrari seat if he kept his Monte Carlo form up, Massa replied: “I think so. The race was very good, and the result at the end, I’m not very happy with because you always want more, but it was a good start for now until the end.”

    Massa said the Monaco weekend had given him a very big confidence boost.

    “For sure I’m very confident,” he said. “I was very confident during the whole weekend and I think the result helps a lot to push a bit harder and to get even better results from now to the end of the year.

    “The championship up to now was not like I expected, but the championship is still very long, so I hope we can completely change what’s happened up to now and go in a different direction from now to the end.”

  12. Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn has pledged to resolve the issues that have plagued Michael Schumacher’s 2012 Formula 1 season after the seven-time champion had another troubled race in Monte Carlo.

    Schumacher was fastest in Monaco qualifying on Saturday but started only sixth due a penalty for taking Bruno Senna out of the Spanish Grand Prix.

    His race was marred by a first-corner clash with Romain Grosjean’s Lotus, and he was only running seventh when a fuel pick-up problem forced him to retire.

    Schumacher’s latest problem follows a gearbox failure in Australia, a loose wheel in China and a DRS problem in Bahrain qualifying.

    Combined with incidents in Malaysia and Spain, those dramas have meant Schumacher has only scored two points so far this season, while his team-mate Nico Rosberg is finished in the championship on 59 points, having won in China and finished a close second in Monaco.

    Brawn admitted that Schumacher deserved better.

    “It was very disappointing because he put in a great performance this weekend and he was still on course to score useful points,” said Brawn.

    “We need to make sure we eliminate the problems for him, starting in Canada.”

    Mercedes motorsport chief Norbert Haug said Monaco had at least proved that Schumacher was quick enough to win again when his luck turns.

    “It was a pity for Michael: he clearly demonstrated this weekend that he has the speed to win races but his time will come again, like yesterday when he posted the pole position time,” said Haug.

    Schumacher agreed that the Monaco weekend was a confidence boost despite its disappointing end.

    “What can I say? It was simply a pity to end the race in this way,” he said.

    “In any case, the fuel pressure problem had nothing to do with the incident at the start. But it made it doubly disappointing because I had secretly been hoping for a podium finish today.

    “I will take the boost from the high points of this weekend with me to Canada. The track should suit us and I’m hoping to have a normal, clean race.”

    Source: Autosport.com

  13. It wasn’t the greatest Monaco race, but I’ve said before, just watching it is enough. Stick on the BBC or Skys, cockpit view and it never gets boring to watch them fly round this most famous street circuit. Shame the rain was too late in coming as it could have been a great shake up and one that could have meant why may well have seen Vergne driving the Toro Rosso-Ferrari take the flag. A last minute gamble on on the weather meant he was brough into the pits to get the inters on. Had it rained, I do think he could have won it. As it was though, it just cost him his first points for the season. As always, you live and die by your decisions.

    It’s a shame Jenson couldn’t have done more with his position as is the norm for him when he’s back in the back.

    Mclarens pit-stops are still slow enabling Alonso to get in front on Lewis when he stopped for tyres. Not a great day for them considering they normally do very well here.

    But it was a great controlled drive from Mark Webber to give him his first win of the season and to make it six races won by six different drivers. Quite incredible. But had this been any other track Mark for sure would have lost his place. The queue of cars were stuck solidly behind him but given a track where you can overtake, then I think many of them would have gotten through.

    But they couldn’t and so its a second win for the Aussie. The Red Bull party complete with pool dive didn’t quite seem the same in the rain, but it’s always great to se the team relax even just for a bit before packing up.

    I saw Martin Brundle getting the pool treatment this year with Sky Sports. What are Red Bull going to do, swap allégeance each year?! I hope not and they stick with the Beeb, cos I dont watch the Sky broadcast pre or post race because I think their presentation is pure rubbish. Mainly I think Simon Lazenby is bloody awful and Damon Hill isn’t much better with his biased thoughts. Give me an opinionated Eddie Jordan any day. Its a shame cos I like the rest of the team, but the style and those two “presenters” let the whole thing down.

    Anyway, a precessional Monaco has lead to the most open championship ever and so we got to Canada with a championship leader board like we have never seen. A win or even second place completely changes the order. Canada usually puts up a good race (2011 anyone?!) and is also great to look at, so can’t wait for the next instalment of this exciting championship

  14. Mark Webber’s victory in the Monaco Grand Prix was unchallenged on Sunday night, despite speculation over a potential protest from rival teams about the legality of his car.

    It is understood that Ferrari, McLaren and Ferrari are unhappy that holes in the floor in front of the rear wheels of the RB8 do not comply with the regulations.

    Other teams that are running such ‘holes’ have been forced to include slots that run out to the edge of the floor to ensure that they are openings – and not fully enclosed.

    There was talk after the race that either McLaren or Ferrari were going to protest the result, but in the end neither team elected to take such action.

    The official results were duly published at 6.45pm confirming Mark Webber’s victory, and there was no subsequent challenge from any competitor about it.

    However, both McLaren and Ferrari said afterwards that they were keen to get clarification on the matter before the next race in Canada.

    Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali said: “I heard about that [the hole issue] in terms of discussion about this type of thing, and for sure we need a clarification on this point. That is all I can say tonight.”

    McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh said he was happy to follow the FIA’s lead on the matter.

    “It is not for me to comment on someone else’s car, it is for the FIA to make that decision,” he explained.

    When asked if he expected the matter to be sorted out before the next race, he said: “Yes. I think it will be sorted out shortly.”

    Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner insisted that his team had had full approval from the FIA on its design being legal.

    “I would be disappointed if there would be a protest, it would not be particularly sporting,” he said.

    “We are totally happy that our car fully complies with the regulations. We have obviously consulted with the FIA over it – we have had their opinion in writing confirming the interpretation, so it would be disappointing if there was a protest. But we are entirely happy that the car completely complies.”

    Source: Autosport.com

  15. From hero to zero in the space of two weeks. This was a shocking race for Pastor Maldonado. Started on the back row following his collision with Sergio Perez in final practice meaning a ten-place grid penalty and then a further grid drop for changing the gearbox. His race lasted only one lap after a chaotic start to the Monaco Grand Prix. Autosport.com has the details.

    Pastor Maldonado says his terrible Monaco Grand Prix weekend has not dented his confidence even though it was such a contrast to his Spanish GP victory.

    After giving Williams its first Formula 1 win for nearly eight years at Barcelona, Maldonado was tipped to star in Monte Carlo, where he had excelled throughout his career.

    But he ended up on the back row of the grid after being penalised for both crashing into Sergio Perez’s Sauber in final practice and changing his gearbox. Maldonado’s race then ended in a first-lap collision with Pedro de la Rosa’s HRT amid the mayhem caused by Romain Grosjean’s incident at the front.

    “I’m really disappointed with the weekend. It’s been difficult after FP3 yesterday, but this is racing, sometimes it’s good and sometimes not,” Maldonado told AUTOSPORT. “I think we need to turn the page and look forward to the next race.

    “I’ve just been talking to the engineers about the next race and trying to not do the same mistakes we made here, especially with the car and trying to improve on the technical side.

    “I think we are getting more competitive, we will still be near the top, and I think there is a great confidence with the car and with my people now, and I’m looking forward to being strong again in Canada.”

    Maldonado added that he was now very secure in his belief in both his ability and the Williams’s pace, so would not let one bad race shake him.

    “I think the best thing now is that I’m very confident. I’m very confident with the car and very confident with the team, and I’ve gained this just by working,” he said.

    “I’ve been working so hard to become strong and now we are so close. We are not the best at the moment, we don’t have the best car, but we are not that far. We are very close.

    “We need to keep pushing with some particular parts of the car, and our people are pushing to improve. We have all the tools to keep improving.”

  16. Sebastian Vettel reckons his Monaco Grand Prix strategy would have worked out better if Kimi Raikkonen’s Lotus had not held up the midfield pack in the first part of the race.

    World champion Vettel used a very long first stint on soft tyres to come from ninth on the grid to finish fourth. The German led for a while and was briefly by far the fastest man on track.

    But he admitted he was counting on the leaders getting delayed in traffic had Raikkonen’s slow pace not created a gap into which they could emerge after their comparatively early stops.

    “We were hoping some of the leaders would be forced to do two stops, but unfortunately Kimi made quite a big gap behind me, so the leaders had clean air after their first stop,” said Vettel.

    “That helped them and it made it more difficult for us, but we started ninth and considering it’s hard to pass here, then to gain five places was a good day.”

    Vettel’s Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber won the race, and the German was confident he was quick enough to at least get on the podium had his tactics worked out better.

    “It would have been nice to have been on the podium today,” said Vettel.

    “I think the speed was there, but in the end we had the same strategy as the leaders, just the other way round.

    “It was quite difficult as we were on older tyres, but we had some good laps and we gained roughly around eight seconds, so that was strong.

    “After that I was in traffic and it’s difficult to pass in Monaco, as I showed last year and Mark showed this year.”

    The Monaco result meant Vettel is now three points behind new leader Fernando Alonso in the championship race.

    Source: Autosport.com

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