2019 Monaco Grand Prix: LIVE
Race and Location: 2019 Formula 1 Grand Prix Du Monaco – Monte-Carlo, Monaco
It’s the Monaco Grand Prix and this is considered to be one of the most legendary circuits to win at and following on from yesterday’s qualifying, it looks like we have a great race on our hands – especially with Leclerc’s Monaco comments.
Today, you’ll be able to see drivers wearing a red hat with the words ‘Niki’ in respect for Niki Lauda who died earlier this week. Before the race, we should also have a 1 minute silence – again in respect for the 3x World Champion.
Here’s a photo from Valtteri Bottas this morning – it’s one way to get to work.
Drivers are now making their way out onto the track for the track parade and below, you’ll be able to see photos shortly.
TRACK PARADE – 2019 Monaco Grand Prix LIVE
Lewis Hamilton: “Track position is very difficult to get here but of course, it’s been a trying week for everyone and that’s why we’re all wearing these caps and I’m really happy that the weather is good today. A lot of people say that the race is done yesterday – it’s not, there’s still a lot of work to do and we need to remain united and connected as a team. I don’t want this day to rush by as we need to wait another year to be back here racing again. This is one of the most, if not the most, demanding circuits. There’s the history here, people come out in their best and it’s glamourous. I love it here as this is my home, I sleep in my bed, I make my own food – I eat pasta. People are like – you have your own chef with a plant-based diet, I don’t, I cook for myself – it’s super basic.”
Valtteri Bottas: “I feel better today after qualifying. We have a strong package as a team and we are all looking forward to the race.”
Sebastian Vettel: “We’ll see what happens today. There’s a lot of laps here and you never know what’s going to happen in Monaco. The guys ahead of us, they’re ahead for a reason – they’re faster but we will see what we can do with the pit stop, the strategy and see how it goes.”
Take a look at the photos below with drivers paying their respects for Niki Lauda, wearing red caps.
The atmosphere in Monaco is brilliant – as it always is. The sun is shining however there’s always the threat of clouds and potentially rain.
As I’m typing that the weather is good, there’s an appearance of clouds in the sky….
A tribute from Mercedes for Niki Lauda…
Continuing from above – there are more and more clouds making an appearance so we could potentially have some rain during the race, as predicted yesterday.
PIT LANE OPEN – 2019 MONACO GRAND PRIX LIVE
Drivers are now starting up their cars and making their way out of the garage.
It’s a busy grid as drivers to make their way to their starting positions. Hoping we have a good race on our hands.
Here’s Lewis Hamilton’s helmet for the race today – in Niki Lauda’s colours.
The front of the grid has been transformed for Niki Lauda – a tribute to Niki Lauda. All the drivers will be wearing the red caps when lined at the front of the grid and there will be a one minute silence.
Team members and journalists are wearing the red caps too – it’s a nice thing to see.
A one minute silence for Niki Lauda. The drivers were standing in a circle around Niki Lauda’s helmet.
Drivers are now having last minute interviews with the media and getting ready for the formation lap.
Pierre Gasly: “I think it was a fair penalty as I blocked Romain (Grosjean). We have a strong car and this is a long race so if we have an opportunity, we need to be ready to take it.”
Carlos Sainz: “We finally made it to the top 10 after a difficult weekend. Our race pace is normally better and we will try to move forward but it’s still early to talk about it.”
There’s now reports that there is a 90% chance of rain.
2019 MONACO GRAND PRIX: LIVE
Team to Hamilton: “It looks like there’s some high intensity stuff on the way which might lead us to intermediates.”
The drivers are now all in their cars and getting ready to start the formation lap.
Drivers are now making their way round the circuit – getting their cars ready for the start of the race and trying to get as much temperature in them.
In regards to the rain, there’s a threat of rain however as some reports are showing – the rain is out over the sea at the moment.
Hamilton has a good start and Valtteri Bottas tries to block of Max Verstappen – he manages to stay in P2. It’s close between Verstappen and Vettel.
There’s a little bit of contact with Raikkonen who just comes together with Stroll but the car looks OK at the moment.
Hamilton is ahead in the lead with Bottas right behind. Verstappen also creating a gap to Vettel however Vettel has Ricciardo right behind him…
DRS is now enabled. Hamilton has started setting fast lap times however Bottas has managed to maintain the gap.
Leclerc is making his way through the grid, he started in P15 and is now up into P13.
Valtteri Bottas has now set the fastest lap time – he’s staying right behind Lewis Hamilton.
Charles Leclerc is right behind Romain Grosjean – he’s closed the gap and has tried numerous times to make his way past but Grosjean has covered the overtaking moves.
As Charles Leclerc said yesterday – he’ll overtake where he can.
Wow – what a move for Leclerc as he makes his way past Grosjean. The two nearly come together – there could have been a slight tough but Lecerc is now up into P13.
Lewis Hamilton sets another fastest lap time.
Oh dear – Leclerc’s tyre has come off. He’s making his way back to the pits but he should have made his way back slowly. Oh dear, that’s damage to his car.
Red Bull Racing crew are out in the pits in the event of a safety car however Mercedes are out on track.
There’s debris on the track hence the safety car.
Lewis Hamilton comes into the pits.
Valtteri Bottas comes into the pits however it’s an unsafe release for Red Bull with Max Verstappen driving alongside Valtteri Bottas and taking the position of Valtteri Bottas.
It’s now Hamilton, Verstappen and Bottas.
Bottas now comes into the pits again and goes on the hard tyre – there could have been a puncture or damage following the stop with Verstappen.
It’s now Hamilton, Verstappen, Vettel and Bottas.
The safety car is ending this lap and Lewis Hamilton is in the lead with Verstappen, Vettel and Bottas right behind.
The race has started again!
Hamilton is in the lead.
At the moment, the stewards are investigating Verstappen and Bottas for the unsafe release in the pits.
CHARLES LECLERC HAS RETIRED FROM THE RACE
Kubica and Giovinazzi are also under investigation for their incident and causing a traffic jam on track.
Lewis Hamilton: “Question, does James think I’m in trouble with these tyres?”
Team to Hamilton: “OK Lewis, just keep doing what you’re doing with management and it’ll all go our way…”
The weather shows slight signs of rain in the distance so we could have more action /weather changes soon….
It’s Hamilton, Verstappen and Vettel who make up the top 3 drivers.
Verstappen is now under investigation.
MAX VERSTAPPEN HAS A 5 SECOND PENALTY – not a bad penalty. This is the ‘best’ penalty which someone could get.
Team to Hamilton: “There’s a chance of some light rain around the track…”
Max Verstappen being updated about his penalty and being told to either overtake Hamilton and minimise the penalty or come into the pits for the five-second penalty.
Lewis Hamilton is now under pressure from the drivers behind – they’re on the hard tyre and have the ability to push.
At the moment, Lewis Hamilton wants rain to benefit his race.
There could be rain in around 5 minutes – Carlos Sainz now mentioning rain on his visor.
There’s signs of rain and this is what Lewis Hamilton wants to help his race – otherwise, he’s under pressure from the drivers behind.
Lewis Hamilton: “Could we think about the hard tyres?”
Team to Hamilton: “Yeah, if we need to stop that would be the option but at the moment, you’re looking OK and Verstappens’ tyres aren’t looking great at the moment either.”
Lewis Hamilton: “Are the cars behind just backing off or are they struggling with the tyres?”
Team to Hamilton: “Yes, it looks like they’re all struggling and realise it’s not easy on the tyres.”
At the moment, the drivers are all in the same positions – Lewis Hamilton leads with Max Verstappen in P2, Sebastian Vettel in P3 and Valtteri Bottas in P4.
Lewis Hamilton on the radio to his engineers asking about the tyres.
The leaders are now catching up to the back markers – at the same time, Lewis Hamilton saying his tyres are in “a bad way” as he has to navigate his the backmarkers….
Lance Stroll receives a 5-second time penalty for going off-track and gaining time. Stroll holding up Valtteri Bottas who’s trying to make his way through the backmarkers.
Lewis Hamilton: “I think I’m in trouble guys – my front left tyre is dead.”
Team to Hamilton: “OK Lewis, keep going – we aren’t going to box now.”
Lewis Hamilton still leading the race – he’s got pressure from Max Verstappen who’s been consistent with his times. Sebastian Vettel on the other hand has dropped back – managing his tyres but still keeping the pressure on Verstappen.
Lewis Hamilton not a happy driver however his engineer is trying to keep him calm by re-assuring him to keep managing his times and tyres.
Maximum pressure from Verstappen to Hamilton.
Team to Hamilton: “Lewis, it’s James – you can do this. We trust you.”
Valtteri Bottas now sets the fastest lap time – he’s right behind Sebastian Vettel.
This is a good race for Sebastian Vettel. He’s been driving great all afternoon, managing his tyres and overall sitting in the best position with the two drivers ahead battling.
Team to Max Verstappen: “Mode 7 mate, mode 7 until the end of the race – go for it.”
Team to Lewis Hamilton: “Verstappens got power boost. You also have the overtake button.”
Oh wow – the pressure is on for Lewis Hamilton with Max Verstappen trying to make his way past. The two come really, really close….
Verstappen cuts the corner and Vettel manages to get closer to the front two drivers.
It’s Hamilton, Verstappen, Vettel and Bottas.
Hamilton still managing to stay in the lead – still under pressure from Verstappen. Again, Vettel sitting nicely in P3.
A time penalty for Romain Grosjean – it won’t affect his race.
Max Verstapen tries to overtake and hits Lewis Hamilton’s rear left tyre – he’s still in the lead.
What a race!!!
LEWIS HAMILTON WINS THE 2019 MONACO GRAND PRIX!
Take a look at some of the driver interviews following the race – a full race recap and interviews will be online this evening.
POST RACE INTERVIEWS
Charles Leclerc: “It was very difficult. I had to take a lot of risks which was fun at the beginning and in the end, it was a disaster. Starting in P15, it’s not our original pace but it was difficult to come back from.”
Toto Wolff: “This win means a lot and it couldn’t have been a more dramatic race. It was a World Championship race for a world championship drive. You just need to accept the driver and having a pressure relief – even if it’s vomiting the anger out. We rarely make mistakes like this but it’s the driver, the driver is the one that makes a difference. Now, we just need to keep doing a good job – this was a very hard one. We have a few days which will be difficult as we have Niki’s funeral in Austria before we go to Canada.”
Max Verstappen: “It’s frustrating to not be on the podium. I gave it all to get by Lewis so I started to push him and at one point I could really start to attack him but the problem is that you can’t have a really good go at it. Following in the dirty air isn’t the best and I would have liked to be on the podium but I had a fun race.”
Valtteri Bottas: “It could have been a lot worse and my stop was a lot slower and I could have been at the back of the grid. To finish in third, it’s not satisfying as I know that we had the speed this weekend but it could have been worse.”
Carlos Sainz: “It was a difficult weekend but we had a good strategy and we managed to put together some good laps. This P6 is a good one and this is a great result for the team overall. I mean, the medium and the soft were graining a lot. When everyone pitted behind the safety car, I tried to put some good laps together and I think at one point I had the fastest lap time but we were battling with the tyres. It’s a good record here, my dad when I was a kid used to tell me “if there’s a place to shine, it’s in Monaco” and this is what I like to do here.”
Lewis Hamilton: “I don’t know how satisfied I am right now as it’s just been so intense. It’s difficult when you’re out there on your own and you have no one to tell you anything and no matter what you’re told, you can’t change your mind. I wanted to bring it home for the team and of course for Niki but on the positive side – I think I’m strong mentally cause if you crack (pointing to his head) then you can ruin a race.”
Sebastian Vettel: “It’s been a tricky weekend. We are still struggling and I never managed to get on top of the car – we had similar pace and we all had similar gaps but after the safety car, this is what helped us. I was quite happy with the pit-stop, Max must have had an incredible pit stop. In the end, I think we had the right strategy but we just didn’t have enough pace to really push.”
Alex Albon: “As a team, they did a great job with the strategy. We knew that if we went to the pits we could get stuck behind other cars so full credit to the team and the guys. We made team decisions and we went through different scenarios and this is what made everything work out.”
Daniil Kvyat: “I was a sitting duck to begin with. I was starting from the inside line and we had a chain reaction – I was stuck behind a few cars and P7 overall, was a good result. The tyre management was good, the strategy was good and overall it was good so we can hopefully continue like this.”
Lots more online this evening.