RACE REPORT AND DRIVER INTERVIEWS – 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

2018-monaco-grand-prix

RACE REPORT AND DRIVER INTERVIEWS – 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

Location: Monte-Carlo, Monaco

Race: 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

Race Report

This morning, we had sunshine in Monaco which suddenly changed to clouds and wind – along with a few droplets of rain, making people question the weather forecast. The race was dry and the wind picked up with many drivers being warned beforehand about the circuit and what to look out.

Despite a little bump with Vettel at the start, Ricciardo led and controlled the race and despite issues he was facing, along with a gearbox problem (driving with 6 gears instead of 8) he managed to bring the car home and what a reward it was for the driver following 2016 with his race loss.

Throughout the race, drivers struggled with the tyres – many people complaining of graining and sliding around the circuit which also caused some issues with their cars.

Below, you can see what drivers (and teams) had to say following the race along with pictures at the bottom of the article.

RED BULL RACING – RACE REPORT AND DRIVER INTERVIEWS – 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

Daniel Ricciardo – 1st

Daniel Ricciardo: “Wow, it still hasn’t sunk in. It was a perfect weekend but a crazy race. It’s such a long week and because I get so excited for this race, I find it hard to control myself and I just couldn’t wait for the lights to go out today.”

“The start went well and I thought, I’ve pretty much done the hard part so let’s just finish this race. Then on lap 28 I exited a corner and felt like I pretty much had no power. When it was clear that it was an MGU-K issue I wanted to close my eyes and start crying as I thought the race was over and I wondered just what I have to do to win here.”

“I spoke with my engineer on the radio and we changed a lot of things that didn’t fix the problem but we just had to survive with the problem and keep Seb behind.”

“We had a lot less power, fortunately, it’s a tight track and we had a good car so I could make up enough time in the corners not to be vulnerable on the straights.”

“On any other circuit, there was no way I would have won today. It wasn’t fun driving like that and I’m pretty exhausted, but very, very happy.”

“We finally got some redemption and this is the sweetest feeling. It wasn’t easy but now I can say I’m a winner here and it’s great to win the team’s 250th race.”

Max Verstappen – 9th

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Max Verstappen: “Although we knew it was going to be damage limitation I still really enjoyed myself out there today as I was able to race other cars and be competitive pretty much from start to finish.”

“Deep down of course I am still disappointed as we could have had a much better result if I hadn’t made the mistake in practice, but on the other hand, I made the most of the race.”

“I had fun, I was passing cars and fighting every lap which is especially rare here in Monaco, normally it is just cruising during the race. The car handled well and we got the strategy spot on and finished in the points so I think that is a good day’s work all things considered.”

“I have learnt throughout my career that it is easy afterwards to say it could have been like this or that, but I always have to look at myself.”

“This weekend I made a mistake but Daniel did a superb job so a massive congratulations to him on winning the race and having a very special moment.”

Christian Horner – Team Principal

“Difficult to describe the performance Daniel put in today. From lap 28 when the MGU-K expired, which creates all kinds of issues with cooling, with brake and tyre temperatures, he managed it in the calmest of manners while defending with Sebastian Vettel no more than a second behind him, and I never believed with approximately a 25 per cent loss of power that he would hold the lead for another 50 laps and win our 250th grand prix.”

“The day and the entire race weekend has belonged to Daniel with a phenomenal performance. It was a great recovery from Max. From the back of the grid it’s always going to be a tough afternoon but he made good progress with some good overtaking which is very difficult to do here, and he benefitted from some good teamwork and strategy and managed to get in to the top 10.”

“Of all the races to win on the calendar, Monaco is the highlight because of that rich heritage and history; this one especially so for Daniel after the disappointment of 2016.”

“To achieve that victory today was testimony to the great car that the guys and girls in Milton Keynes have produced, and Daniel’s ability behind the wheel.”

“It is absolutely teamwork that wins races and we have to thank all of our team partners for their support that allows us all to savour special moments like this.”

MERCEDES – RACE REPORT AND DRIVER INTERVIEWS – 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton – 3rd

lewis-hamilton-monaco-2018

Lewis Hamilton: “A big congratulations to Daniel, I’m really happy for him. He was so close to winning his first Monaco Grand Prix two years ago, so it’s good for him to have it now.”

“I’m happy with the weekend – we were the third quickest team and we almost got second. I’m grateful to only have lost three points to Sebastian in the championship fight – I’ll take that and move forwards.”

“It wasn’t a really difficult race, we just had to take the tyres go a long way; I didn’t think they were going to go as far as they did.”

“It’s a shame that the race is unfortunately not as exciting as the whole spectacle of Monaco, especially since through practice there’s no place like it and the track is just epic in Qualifying.”

“We hope that Canada will suit our car a little bit better; but it will be another close fight, especially with the Ferrari.”

Valtteri Bottas – 5th

valtteri-bottas-monaco-2018

Valtteri Bottas: “That’s Monaco – sometimes a lot of things happen; sometimes nothing happens and you get a pretty uneventful race like today.”

“I think we made the right choice with the SuperSoft tyre for my second stint, it felt like it was working better than the UltraSofts. The first stint was difficult because of the tyre drop-off, but the second stint was really good, I could put pressure on the cars ahead.”

“I had more pace than the cars in front of me, and yet there was nothing I could do; even with the pace difference overtaking was impossible.”

“We knew the weekend might be difficult and that’s how it turned out to be, but we managed to do successful damage limitation.”

“Qualifying P5 did not make that any easier for me and I don’t think we could have done anything different today with the car we have. Montreal should be a better hunting ground for our car, so we hope for a better outcome in Canada.”

Toto Wolff – Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport

“In sport, you have to accept that there are days when you won’t win and, if you’d offered us third and fifth before the weekend, we’d probably have taken it as a fair result.”

“Congratulations to Daniel, he deserved the win and was the quickest man out there this weekend. It was a tough and frustrating afternoon for Lewis and Valtteri.”

“Lewis suffered from graining on both tyre compounds which he had to manage through most of the race; we discussed making another stop but it would only have cost us positions, not gained any, so it was the right call to stay out. Valtteri ended up running most of the race on the best compound, the SuperSoft, but there was no way past Kimi so he had to follow him to the flag.”

“Overall, this was a weekend of damage limitation for us and we can be pleased to leave Monaco in the lead of both championships. Now we will regroup and aim to return to winning form in Canada.”

FERRARI – RACE REPORT AND DRIVER INTERVIEWS – 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

Sebastian Vettel – 2nd

Sebastian-vettel-monaco-press-conference

Sebastian Vettel: “Today, I was trying to get closer to the car in front and do something; but obviously if you get closer it doesn’t help with your tyres. In some corners you don’t really need power and Ricciardo was quicker than us. He was always able to open the gap and I was never really there.”

“He could keep his pace and I think that perhaps it could have been worse for us if he hadn’t had some issues. Unfortunately, there weren’t many chances to do something different.”

“I think it was tricky for us to make the tires work the right way. Then, when the Virtual Safety Car came on, a McLaren was just exiting the box and took a lot of time, while I was struggling with tire warm-up, and I think that was the biggest issue that cost me quite a few seconds.”

“It took to me one and a half lap to get the rhythm back, but by then it was too late. However, there are so many races to go and I believe we need to understand our problems. We have a good car, but we can make it better.”

Kimi Raikkonen – 4th

kimi-raikkonen-monaco

Kimi Raikkonen: “Today nothing really happened in the race; to be honest, it was a pretty boring one.”

“We know that on this track, once everybody has stopped, whoever is in the front dictates the speed and no matter if he goes four second slower on a lap, there’s no way to pass unless somebody makes a big mistake or runs out of tyres. We end up following each other through the whole race.”

“I had no problem managing my tyres, in fact they were pretty good. I only had some graining with the first set, but apart from that they were ok.”

“I was never worried about Bottas behind me, we had the speed and I could easily close up with the car in front, but there was no way to pass him. We were all the time doing our best, but couldn’t use our pace.”

“Obviously we cannot be happy with fourth position, but as always, we try to learn from every race.”

Maurizio Arrivabene – Team Principal

“Compared to the race weekend here last year, this one seemed more difficult right from the start. But thanks to the efforts of everyone in the team, the SF71H got progressively better, until it proved capable of taking second place in qualifying. However, on a track like this, it was not enough to produce an even better race result.”

“Like everyone else, we opted for a one-stop strategy, which therefore meant having to manage the tyres in the second stint, so as to save them for the final laps.”

“However, at that point, the Virtual safety car came out, meaning it was no longer possible to attack.”

McLaren – RACE REPORT AND DRIVER INTERVIEWS – 2018 Monaco Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso – DNF

Fernando Alonso: “It was quite a boring race: I was cruising around in seventh position as there were barely any yellow flags or Safety Cars.”

“I’m obviously disappointed because this was our first retirement of the season today. First, I felt a loss of power and then I was somehow stuck in fifth gear. It’s painful because we had seventh place in the bag.”

“We were the fourth fastest car around here this weekend, and seventh in the race is what we would have deserved. There’s nothing we can do about it now, but we obviously need to improve our reliability for the forthcoming races.”

Stoffel Vandoorne – 14th

stoffel-vandoorne

Stoffel Vandoorne: “This was a disappointing race for me. The first stint was really tough – I’d started on the Ultrasoft and was looking to run longer than the Hypersoft runners, but I had too much degradation and couldn’t manage it. Then I lost a lot of time at my first pit-stop, and that also lost me track position.”

“My final stint – on the Hypersoft – was a bit quicker, and I could take the fight to the cars in front, but obviously Monaco is no place at which to overtake.”

“We were expecting more, but I still think we’ve taken a step forward with our qualifying pace. But I think we need to really focus on improving our car performance so we’re better placed to score points.”

Eric Boullier – Racing Director

“It’s bitterly disappointing to be walking away from the most prestigious grand prix of the year with no points – but, sometimes, that’s motor racing. It’s made even more frustrating by the fact that Fernando had driven a faultless race and, through no fault of his own, was forced to park the car with a transmission problem on lap 53.”

“Stoffel had limited opportunities to make progress from his 12th position on the grid. But he kept his nose clean all afternoon, managed to recover a flat-spot, and pushed all the way to the flag.”

“There are positives to take away from the weekend: our pace on Saturday was a clear improvement, and our upgrades continue to deliver on the track.”

“There’s a lot more work still to be done, but we head to Canada feeling confident that we’re headed in the right direction.”

2018-monaco-grand-prix

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