Monaco Grand Prix: Ferrari score big one-two finish in Monte Carlo
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News May 28, 2017 Updated: 4:18 PM
MONTE-CARLO, Monaco -- Ferrari and Sebastian Vettel deal a heavy blow to Mercedes with a dominant performance at Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix as the team scored their first Monaco one-two finish since 2001 and extended their lead in the constructors' championship to 12 pts.
“A supreme day for Ferrari; it’s been a long time. Yeah, I think it means an awful lot to the team. I will not find the right words but for me it was a pretty special race,” Vettel said.
As with previous Ferrari victories, this season Ferrari Chef Executive Sergio Marchionne issued a statement after the race:
“Something we’ve been waiting for a long time has finally come to pass, a race which will be part of our history. Not only a victory, but a one-two finish at a Grand Prix with a tradition as glorious as Monaco, where Ferrari last won with another one-two, delivered on that occasion by Schumacher and Barrichello. Today it was a really exciting race where we saw the real Scuderia.
My compliments to the drivers and, once again, the whole team, both those at the track and the individuals that work so hard each and every day back in Maranello on a car that is finally giving our tifosi the satisfaction they deserve.”
Vettel takes his 45th career victory after starting second behind Raikkonen, but what may have been strategy or miscommunication along the way saw Vettel finish ahead of his teammate.
Raikkonen finished second after claiming his first pole since 2008 ahead of Daniel Ricciardo in third taking his second podium of the season for Red Bull. Ricciardo was able to leapfrog the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas who finished fourth and teammate Max Verstappen in fifth with a solid long run strategy.
Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz finished in a very impressive sixth as he was able to hold off a charging Lewis Hamilton who started the race from 13th after a disastrous qualifying but made the best of the situation with a strong recovery drive to finish seventh for Mercedes.
“I’m really, really happy that I was able to fight back to seventh. The strategists said P10 was probably the maximum today, so it feels great to have beaten that target. To score six points, considering where I was on the grid after a disastrous day on Saturday is a good recovery. Today it was impossible to overtake and I tried everything to get past Carlos [Sainz] at the end! I’m just grateful to have ended up in P7,” said Hamilton.
Haas' Romain Grosjean took eighth ahead of Williams' Felipe Massa in ninth. Grosjean's teammate Kevin Magnussen took the tenth and final point paying position putting both drivers in the points for the first in the team's history.
After the race, Team Principal Guenther Steiner said “A first time with two cars in the points is something we wanted to achieve this year. We achieved it in race six. We wanted it before then, but race six is not too bad. Like I said after qualifying, everybody did a good job. We fell out of the points and we got back in after the puncture, so I think we can be pretty happy and content with what we did here.”
Renault's Joylon Palmer ended the day 11th along with the Force India's Esteban Ocon, and Sergio Perez in 12th and 13th who finished outside the points for the first time this season. Ocon and Perez made up the final places on the grid as Kvyat, Stroll and Hulkenberg followed by both McLarens and both Saubers failed to finish the race, with Pascal Wehrlein colliding with Jensen Button resulting in Wehrlein car flipping on its side sliding into the barrier.
Wehrlein walked away unharmed saying: “I am feeling okay after the accident. I could get out of the car by myself and went for the usual medical examination. As my head touched the barriers, it will be decided within the coming days if I need another medical investigation, also because of the previous thoracic vertebra injury.”
Vettel's win extends his championship lead over Lewis Hamilton to 25 points after six rounds.