2016 Track Preview: Monaco Grand Prix

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All rights reserved to F1mix.com

Max Verstappen wins the Spanish Grand Prix ahead of the Ferrari’s of Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel. Williams, McLaren, Toro Rosso and Force India all managed to score some much needed points.

Heading into this weekend, Haas F1 driver Romain Grosjean unveiled a helmet especially for this weekend where Jules Bianchi in 2014 completed his greatest achievement in F1 when he scored an ninth place finish for Marussia. If you want to read more about this, then please read my article here:- https://jonesonf1.wordpress.com/2016/05/25/grosjean-pays-tribute-to-bianchi-this-weekend-in-monaco/

The Monaco GP circuit is considered the ultimate test of driving skills. It contains both the slowest corner in Formula 1, taken at just 50 km/h, and one of the quickest, taken at 260 km/h. The average speed is very low compared to other F1 circuits. The drivers have to go very close to the Armco barriers all the time and there is no margin for error at all.

The Grand Prix of Monaco is certainly the most classic race on the calendar of the Formula One World Championship, and the one race teams and drivers want to win above all others.

Monaco is a track where the driver plays a more important role than the power of the car. The course is narrow and dangerous, and overtaking is almost impossible, so qualifying is very important. The only corner that offers a real chance of a passing move is turn 1, Sainte Devote.

It is one of the few points with any run-off area and drivers quite often have to use the escape road. Overtaking might also be possible in the Nouvelle chicane after the famous tunnel section, by pressuring the driver in front to make a mistake. The circuit demands a softer set-up than usual and maximum downforce.

In 1955, Italian Alberto Ascari made history by becoming the first driver to crash into the harbour in Monaco during a Grand Prix. Ascari survived, but he was treated for a broken nose, bruises and shock. The only other driver to crash into the harbour in the circuit’s history was Paul Hawkins from Australia. He did so when he spun at the chicane with his Lotus during the 1965 Grand Prix. Hawkins emerged from the unusual accident uninjured.

Here’s my facts and figures as well as my predictions heading into the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend…

Facts and Figures

  • Monte Carlo has hosted the Grand Prix in Spain since 1929, even though the first Formula One race was in 1950.
  • Ayrton Senna is the most successful driver to win the Grand Prix with six wins.
  • Nico Rosberg is the most successful driver currently to win the Grand Prix with three wins.
  • McLaren are the most successful constructor to win the Grand Prix with fifteen wins
  • Race distance: 260.5km (161.87 miles)
  • Number of turns:19
  • Top speed: 284kph
  • Lap record: Michael Schumacher- Ferrari (2004)- 1.14.439

Winners from last 5 Monaco Grand Prix

  • 2011-Sebastian Vettel
  • 2012-Mark Webber
  • 2013- Nico Rosberg
  • 2014-Nico Rosberg
  • 2015- Nico Rosberg

My top five predictions for the Monaco GP

In no particular order, here’s my top five predictions for the Monaco Grand Prix as follows:-

  1. Nico Rosberg
  2. Lewis Hamilton
  3. Sebastian Vettel
  4. Kimi Raikkonen
  5. Valtteri Bottas

Based on what the top five drivers have managed to achieve in the first five Grand Prixs, I believe that Rosberg is in top form to beat Hamilton this weekend in order to show that he cannot be discounted for extending his lead in the championship and retain his gap on Hamilton.

Hamilton will also want to repeat his performance from last year and regain the small championship gap to his team mate and also keep Sebastian Vettel behind him who I believe could challenge the Mercedes pairing this year; provided that Ferrari keep going in the same direction they are currently. And finally, I believe that Raikkonen and Bottas could both have solid weekends provided that they are able to get the right set ups on their cars over the weekend.

Do you agree with my predictions for this weekend? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Sky Sports F1 are showing uninterrupted coverage of every Practice session, Qualifying and race for the Grand Prix (and every race of the season) and the BBC also are showing coverage, details for both are below:-

  • Sky Sports F1:- Thursday (Practice 1 and 2) 8.45am and 12.45am [Replays throughout Thursday], Saturday (Practice 3 and Qualifying) 9.45am and 12.00pm [Replays throughout Saturday], Sunday (Race) 11.30am
  • Channel Four- Saturday (Qualifying highlights) 5.45pm, Sunday (Race highlights) 5.45pm

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