Max Verstappen achieved his first podium and first win in Monaco and his second win of the season to take the lead in the drivers’ standings as Lewis Hamilton finished only seventh and Carlos Sainz finished second for Ferrari after Charles Leclerc didn’t even start due to problems with his car.
For the first time in his F1 career, Verstappen took the lead in the drivers’ standings with four points more than Hamilton, and for the first time since the 2018 German Grand Prix, Mercedes does not lead in the constructors’ standings as Red Bull overtook them by one point.
On the way to the starting grid, Leclerc informed the team that he had a problem with the gearbox, although Ferrari later announced that it was a damage to the driveshaft, so the fastest driver in the qualifying did not even start the race.
Verstappen started well and kept the lead ahead of Bottas who started even better but couldn’t do anything as the Dutchman covered the inside for the first corner while Sainz kept third place for Ferrari.
Bottas managed to keep up behind Verstappen in the first laps, but as a third of the race approached, Verstappen managed to build an advantage of more than three seconds, which guaranteed him safety from a strategic attack by Mercedes.
Hamilton started a series of pitstops in the 29th lap in an atempt to overtake Gasly by boxing earlier, but the Briton was slower on the new hard tyres than Gasly on the old soft and lost his position to the French driver.
Bottas suffered a real disaster during his tyre change because the mechanics failed to remove his front right wheel which forced him to retire, and Hamilton later lost position to Vettel, who overtook both him and Gasly by staying longer on the track on soft tyres.
Sainz entered the pits two laps later and held second place behind Verstappen who was not yet in the pits and who made his only tyre change in lap 34 and came back with a six-second lead over Sainz.
Although Sainz at first managed to slice Verstappen’s lead, the Dutchman stepped up the pace in the final third of the race and separated himself by more than eight seconds from the Spaniard and celebrated with 8.9 seconds for his first win on the streets of Monte Carlo.
Norris finished third for McLaren which is their first podium in Monaco since 2011 when Button finished third, while for Norris this was the second podium this season and third in his F1 career.
Perez started eighth after Leclerc failed to start and managed to finish fourth after he too overtook Hamilton by staying longer stay on the track on soft tyres and put pressure on Norris in the fight for third place.
Vettel had the best race of the season for Aston Martin finishing fifth ahead of Gasly in AlphaTauri and a frustrated Hamilton was only seventh for Mercedes to make a dubious strategic decision after an early switch to hard tyres.
Stroll was eighth in the second Aston Martin after starting 13th on hard tyres making this race the best this season for the former Racing Point team, and Ocon scored two points for Alpine ahead of Giovinazzi who won the first point of the season for Alfa Romeo.
The only driver who retired was Bottas even though his Mercedes F1 W12 was completely healthy, but since the mechanics could not remove his wheel he was not allowed to continue on different tyres.
Haas drivers were convincingly the last of the drivers to finish the race with three laps behind the winner with Mazepin finishin ahead of Schumacher despite German making a move on his team mate in Loews corner early in the race.
Hamilton managed to drive the fastest lap of the race and set a new track record in the race – 1:12.909 – after pitting late for soft tyres, which brought him another point that can be very important in the fight for the title.
The next race will take place in two weeks in Azerbaijan.
MONACO GP RESULTS
|1||33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Honda||78||1:38:56.820|
|2||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Ferrari||78||1:39:05.788||8.968|
|4||11||Sergio Pérez||Red Bull/Honda||78||1:39:17.310||20.490|
|5||5||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin/Mercedes||78||1:39:49.411||52.591|
|8||18||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin/Mercedes||77||1 lap|
|9||31||Esteban Ocon||Alpine/Renault||77||1 lap|
|10||99||A.Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo/Ferrari||77||1 lap|
|11||7||Kimi Räikkönen||Alfa Romeo/Ferrari||77||1 lap|
|12||3||Daniel Ricciardo||McLaren/Mercedes||77||1 lap|
|13||14||Fernando Alonso||Alpine/Renault||77||1 lap|
|14||63||George Russell||Williams/Mercedes||77||1 lap|
|15||6||Nicholas Latifi||Williams/Mercedes||77||1 lap|
|16||22||Yuki Tsunoda||AlphaTauri/Honda||77||1 lap|
|17||9||Nikita Mazepin||Haas/Ferrari||75||3 laps|
|18||47||Mick Schumacher||Haas/Ferrari||75||3 laps|
Fastest lap: Lewis Hamilton – 1:12.909 (lap 69)
DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP AFTER 5/23 RACES
|7||Carlos Sainz Jr.||38||4||10||–||6||18|