2023 Monaco Grand Prix – Qualifying Report


The build-up for the race this week has been wonderful!

We had a great Qualifying – before you head to the race tomorrow, lets take a look and see what the teams and drivers had to say following on from the 2023 Monaco Grand Prix Qualifying session.

Starting off with Aston Martin.

Aston Martin

Fernando Alonso has looked strong throughout the weekend and with many people rooting for the team – and driver to do well this weekend, it’s not a surprise to see him challenging for pole!

P2 isn’t something to overlook, this is a very good starting point for the driver and who knows what we’ll see tomorrow….


Fernando Alonso, 2nd

 “We have to be happy with this result. This year we’ve tended to perform better on Sundays but starting from the first row in Monaco is a positive achievement. Job done today.”

“It was a great final run but when the team told me I was in P1, I already knew that there was a chance I’d get bumped to second.”

“I pushed the limits to uncomfortable levels – I risked a lot today and our pace in the final sector is a little bit of a weak spot so we need to take a look at that for future races.

“Tomorrow, I’m aiming to finish the race and take the maximum points possible”

“If it’s a straightforward afternoon, we’ll hopefully finish on the podium – any more opportunities and we’ll be there to take them.”


Lance Stroll, 4th

 “A frustrating qualifying session, the potential was definitely there. In Q1, I finished fifth and I was feeling good in the car.”

“Then, things went downhill in Q2 – I didn’t get the tyres prepared properly on my out-lap and then I got caught at the weighbridge, there was traffic and I lost a few tenths at Turn 18 on my final run.”

“When margins are so tight, those things just compound the situation. Tomorrow is another day and we’ll roll the dice with the strategy – either going long or pitting early and undercutting people.”

“Hopefully, a bit of rain will mix things up.”

Mike Krack, Team Principal: “This was an intense session for the whole team. Fernando drove superbly, he nailed his final lap and will line up on the front row for tomorrow’s Monaco Grand Prix.”

“That’s an incredible achievement for the whole team and we can be proud of that.”

“Lance had the pace to graduate to Q3 but a combination of factors – traffic, debris on the track, a delay at the weighbridge meant he didn’t get a clean Q2.”

“In particular, he ran over a large piece of debris at the exit of Tabac which damaged his floor and affected the grip in the final sector.”

“The aim tomorrow is to score maximum points with both drivers.”

Red Bull Racing


A mixed afternoon for the Red Bull Racing team which saw Sergio Perez crash in Q1 – carrying too much speed into the first corner and hitting the barriers, hard! Ending his session and bringing out the red-flag.

Verstappen pushed his car to the limits and he bumped Fernando Alonso into P2 – taking pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix!


Max Verstappen, 1st

 “We knew it was going to be a bit of a struggle this weekend but everything came together in the end.”

“Yesterday wasn’t the best day but I think we kept on improving and getting better.”

“My final lap wasn’t ideal. I gave it everything I had and I clipped a few barriers but I’m happy to be on pole for the first time.”

“Tomorrow, we need a clean start and it’s a short run to Turn 1 and in Monaco, a lot of things can happen – race-pace wise, the car is quick so hopefully we can have a positive day.”


Sergio Perez, 20th

 “I am really disappointed with myself today. It was going so well and I was happy with the balance of the car, in Q1, naturally you are progressing and finding new limits.”

“Going into the corner, I just lost the rear-end quite late which caught me out and I had nowhere to go.”

“I couldn’t cut the corner or get out of the corner. Unfortunately, that meant that I ended up touching the wall and I cannot believe what I have done.”

“This mistake is too difficult to digest right now and I don’t know what to say, I am so sorry for my team – they don’t deserve this.”

Christian Horner, Team Principal: “That was one of the most exciting laps Max has ever driven in Quali and what a performance!”

“On the last lap, when he arrived at the swimming pool, he was 0,2 of a second behind Fernando and then in the last sector he hit the wall, twice, and he was gaining time and he took pole. An unreal drive.”

“Sadly for Checo, he didn’t get the opportunity to show what he can do around here – a mistake too early in Q1 put an end in his qualifying campaign.”

“It’s a shame but we are looking forward to what tomorrow brings.”

Scuderia Ferrari

After what seemed to be a good weekend for the team, things didn’t pan out as expected for Ferrari. Leclerc made it through to P3 however a 3-place penalty will see him start from P6.

Sainz pushed but couldn’t match the speed of Aston Martin nor Red Bull – starting his race from P5 tomorrow.

Charles Leclerc, 3rd

It was a very tricky qualifying on a weekend where I have struggled quite a lot with the car.”

“I think our SF-23 is not handling the bumps so well but in qualifying it was a bit more alive and we managed to secure P3, very close to the pole position time.”

“A qualifying lap here is like nowhere else on the calendar and it feels really good to drive.”

“So all in all I can be happy but I would of course have preferred to be first.”

“For tomorrow, I need a bit more luck than in the past years here. The forecast says there is a chance of rain and if that is the case anything is possible.”

“I will go for it anyway and then we will see where we end up.”

Carlos Sainz, 5th

Honestly, I’m not happy with how things ended in Q3. Having to pass three slow cars during the last push lap is far from ideal especially when things were so tight.”

“I’m disappointed because the weekend had been quite positive up to this point.”

“Anyway, we still have a chance to do well in the race tomorrow, so we’ll aim to use our good pace and the strategy to try and make up some places.”

Fred Vasseur, Team Principal: Of course, it’s a bit frustrating to find yourself P3 just one tenth of a second off pole and two hundredths off the front row.”

“Today it was quite difficult to give the drivers a car they were comfortable with, which at Monaco is always key, since being quick on this track is a matter of having the right feeling with the car, avoiding the walls and gradually picking up the pace over the weekend.”

“We were able to improve the car after FP3 for qualifying and in the end the result is not that bad as we are the only team with two cars in the top five.”

“That means we can look at how we can play with the strategy with our two drivers to move up the order in the race, given that it’s almost impossible to overtake.”

“Now we will look at the data and prepare for tomorrow, bearing in mind that the weather could also play its part.”


A frustrating weekend for the team and an uncharacteristic mistake from Lewis Hamilton seeing him damaging the front wing in FP3.

Both drivers will be starting further back the grid, Hamilton in P6 and Russell in P8 – lets see what tomorrow will bring the team with their strategy and plans.


Lewis Hamilton, 6th

The car was feeling good throughout yesterday, particularly in FP1. We then worked overnight and made some changes after FP3 to refine the set-up.”

“It improved the car in the middle of the lap, but it wasn’t good in the first and last sectors.”

“It was tough today therefore and difficult to progress from Q1 and Q2, but we just managed it.”

“Given that, I was happy with my final lap, and I think that’s as good as we could have managed.”

“I’m also hopeful that the set-up we have will work well for the race.”

“I love being on this circuit and the challenge is immense. It’s very difficult to overtake but we’ll work as a team to make sure we’re prepared to capitalise on any opportunities that present themselves tomorrow.”

“I’m grateful for where we are and I’ll keep pushing.”


George Russell, 8th

We didn’t strike the right balance with the car today. We were often strong in sector one but from there, the lap just went away from us. We also seemed to struggle more as qualifying progressed.”

“In Q3, that was more down to my part as I didn’t get it together.”

“Naturally we’re disappointed as there were moments where we looked quick, but I think the maximum wasn’t much more than what we got today. It’s going to be a long Grand Prix tomorrow.”

“Monaco is a unique circuit and historically as a team, it’s not always suited our car or been our best race.”

“We also know you’re likely to finish where you start, but we will be doing everything we can to move forward.”

Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: “We know starting fifth and eighth for tomorrow’s race makes it a challenging Grand Prix for us.”

“Overtaking is notoriously difficult here, but we will be doing everything we can to move forward.”

“Despite our starting positions, we can be motivated by the size of the gap to the front. If you had told me ahead of the weekend that we would be three-tenths off pole position, I would have taken it.”

We also didn’t execute our final laps in qualifying as well as we could have so there was possibly a little more lap time to be found.”

“After FP3, we went slightly more aggressive on the set-up. If we had been more conservative, we may have found a better balance with the car.”

“Nevertheless, we’re hopeful those changes will stand us in good stead for tomorrow.”

“It’s been a big team effort to get our update to track. The hard work and dedication of everyone at Brackley and Brixworth is inspiring and we’re looking forward to racing it tomorrow.”

Andrew Shovlin, Trackside Engineering Director: “It’s not ideal to be lining up fifth and eighth, but we were having to work hard to get the tyre temperatures in the right window to start the lap.”

“That was particularly difficult in Q1 and Q2 as it was impossible to get a clean out-lap due to traffic.”

“Ultimately, that meant Lewis had to use an extra set of soft tyres in Q2, that we were aiming to save for Q3.”

“George had a slightly more comfortable journey through the first two sessions, but the grip just wasn’t there when it mattered for his final two runs.”

“It’s never easy to move forward in the Grand Prix here but we’ll be working through the scenarios tonight.”

“It’s often an unpredictable race and it looks like it might be tough on the tyres.”

“We’ll make sure we do everything we can to be ready to capitalise on any opportunities that come our way tomorrow.”


Lando Norris, 10th

Disappointing qualifying for two reasons. One through my own fault, hitting the wall, I messed up on my side.”

“The mechanics did a mega job to put everything back together, so a big thank you to them.”

“Unfortunately, we then just got blocked completely in my fastest lap in Q3, which wasn’t our fault.”

“It was a bit up and down, and sadly not the result we wanted.”

We probably wouldn’t have achieved a lot more, but maybe a P8 was possible, which around Monaco means a lot.”

“Frustrating, but we did many things well, so we’ll hang on and try to get some good points tomorrow.”


Oscar Piastri, 11th

P11. Shame to have missed out on Q3 by so little but, happy with the improvement I made.”

“We struggled through the practice sessions, so to get so close to Q3 in quali, I’m quite happy with.”

“Only one spot out of the top ten and anything can happen tomorrow.”

“We’ll work hard this evening and see what we can do to work our way in to the points tomorrow.”

The Formula 1 Girl

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Images: Formula 1 / Getty Images / Teams


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