Reaction round-up: Monaco Grand Prix

Reaction round-up: Monaco Grand Prix

The 61st Monaco Grand Prix was a thrilling spectacle, with Nico Rosberg storming to his second win of the season. Lewis Hamilton just held on to second after coming under pressure from Daniel Ricciardo in the closing stages.0970LB1DX8652

The Red Bull Racing driver had to settle for third, with Fernando Alonso and Nico Hulkenberg rounding out the top five. With mixed fortunes up and down the field, here is a round-up of the driver’s reactions after the race:

Sebastian Vettel

“It’s disappointing. I had a good start and then we lost boost pressure from the turbo, so I had no power and had to retire. The team did everything they could. I felt quite helpless in the car, so I was asking for an answer of what we could do, but there wasn’t anything at that stage. We fixed some problems yesterday with the ERS, but some more came today with the turbo, but we will move forwards and it will be good for us soon.”

Daniel Ricciardo

“The race really came to life towards the end. It started off not so well and it’s a really short run to Turn 1, so that was frustrating. Then we got Seb due to his reliability and Kimi had a puncture and we sort of got back to where we were hoping to be. After the re-start we were just saving the tyres to the point that we could get to the end and then, with 20 laps to go, I thought they would be okay so I pushed. It was the first time in the whole race that I felt like I was really driving the car and we caught Lewis. It was fun but I couldn’t get him, so I have to say the race finished better than it started.”

Nico Rosberg

“It was a tough race out there today but I am absolutely delighted to have won my second Monaco Grand Prix in succession. It’s an amazing feeling and I’m proud to have done it at home, in front of my family and friends who were all here this afternoon. The race started well and I was comfortable but then we had to manage my fuel consumption and Lewis was pushing really hard behind me.

“We were able to be in control of the fuel with a few laps of lift and coast. It was important for me to break Lewis’ momentum of winning the last four races this weekend. That worked out very well, but it was a really tough weekend. I’m so happy for the team that we had another one-two finish and look forward to the party tonight.”

Lewis Hamilton

“I felt very strong out there today and I really drove with all my heart, giving everything that I could to improve my position. This just hasn’t been my weekend but I can leave today feeling happy that we have achieved another one-two finish for the team. We have such a great car and everyone who has worked on it deserves the incredible results that we are getting at the moment.

“Back to this afternoon, this is such a difficult circuit to overtake. I was following Nico as close as I could and had great pace but I just couldn’t get past. Towards the end, I got some dirt in my eye through the visor which made it very tough for a few laps but thankfully it cleared up and I was able to hold off Daniel and keep second place. This hasn’t been the greatest of weekends but I’ll go into the next race with even more energy and determination. The team are working so hard and we’re determined to keep the momentum going.”

Fernando Alonso

“Finishing just off the podium today was a good result, especially after a difficult start and the various incidents during the race. At the start, something in the motor didn’t work, but even if I’d had full power, there was no room to overtake. The three cars ahead of me deserved to be there as they were really uncatchable. I am pleased with fourth place, because we were able to manage a race in which you had to always maintain the highest level of concentration as there were plenty of tense moments.

“Our pace was good and that means that, bit by bit, we are improving. Sure, the gap to the leaders is still significant, because like us, they are still moving forward on the development front. Therefore we must always try to do better, starting with the next race in Canada.”

Kimi Raikkonen

“This was a very unlucky day for me, a real shame after getting a good start and managing to move up to third place. The car was handling well and had a good pace. Unfortunately, in a Safety Car period, my car was hit by Chilton’s Marussia and I had to make an unscheduled stop as my right rear tyre was damaged and that meant the end of any chance of getting a good result. I am sorry I still haven’t managed to get a good result because we are working very hard. We know there is a lot to do as our rivals are still a long way ahead, but I am sure that if we continue down this path the results will come, maybe with a bit more luck.”

Romain Grosjean0970LB1DX8642

“It’s good to finish the race here for the first time in my career and it’s good to get some points too. It started as a pretty bad Sunday for us with a puncture for me on the first lap after Adrian [Sutil] drove into me. We swapped to the soft tyres but it was impossible to overtake on these so we came back in for the super softs. The safety car timing didn’t help us as we’d just gone out on the new tyres, but that’s Monaco. You can have thousands of misfortunes in the race, but still be in the points at the end.”

Jenson Button

“This was a typical Monaco Grand Prix – it was messy out there; people were making mistakes; there were cars all over the place; you had to stay focused; keep up with the pack, and look after the tyres, using them when necessary. For the entirety of my final stint, I looked after my tyres and dropped back into the clear air behind Kevin. Then it was just about pacing myself to the end. I couldn’t quite get past Nico [Hulkenberg] at the end – he was struggling with his tyres, but whenever I pushed, I struggled as well, so I couldn’t make it stick.

“In the closing laps, we had a good little battle, but it’s so tough when you’re shoved up behind another car. It’s difficult enough as it is, but when you can’t really see anything because there’s a car in front, it’s even more difficult. This wasn’t a bad result for us – I just wish I could have picked off Nico at the end. It’s just a pity that Kevin’s late-race problem meant we couldn’t get more points for both cars at the finish.”

Sergio Perez

“I was in a battle with Nico, who was ahead, and I went to take the apex normally. I was on the racing line and ahead of Jenson [Button] when he clipped my rear wheel and spun me around into the barriers. I did not expect him to be there as there wasn’t really any space for another car there. It was very unlucky. As a racing driver you have good and bad Sundays but this is definitely one I want to forget as soon as possible. It is disappointing that we lost a big chance to score a good amount of points, but the car felt much better here than in Spain, as shown by Nico’s result. This is a very positive signal looking ahead to Montreal.”

Adrian Sutil

“It is a pity that my race ended so early. I had quite a good start. In turn 5 one of the other drivers spun, and as I came around the corner many cars were suddenly stopping in front of me. I had front wing damage which forced me to make a pitstop.

“I went back onto track almost at the backend of the field, but I was able to gain some positions lap by lap. Unfortunately, coming out of the tunnel I made a mistake when braking, lost the rear and crashed into the guardrail. Certainly, I am very disappointed and I also feel sorry for the whole team.”

Daniil Kvyat

“It’s disappointing that I had to retire today, especially because we looked competitive all weekend and had a good chance of finishing in the points here. I was able to hold my position at the start of the race and even move up to eighth before I had to retire. Unfortunately these things happen and I will now switch my focus to the next race where I hope we can carry over this momentum.”

Felipe Massa0958LB1D3692

“I am very happy with seventh after starting 16th on the grid. I took some risks when I changed strategy at the safety car and had to make my tyres last, which they did. I made the most of the opportunities I had with other cars making mistakes or retiring. Many things could have happened so I am pleased they worked out for the best. A tough weekend turned into a positive one.”

Jules Bianchi

“Wow. What a race and what a result for the whole Team. I am just incredibly happy, but first of all I have to pay credit to everyone at the Marussia F1 Team for making this possible. Nobody knows just how much work and determination goes into our races, so today I am thrilled that I have helped them to achieve their long-held target of our first points.

“To achieve them together makes me very proud. My thanks to everyone here in Monaco, the rest of the Team in Banbury and also to our powertrain partners, Scuderia Ferrari, because together we have all made great progress, particularly since the Barcelona Test. This gave us the confidence to push and we certainly did that here this weekend. It was not an easy race; there were some enjoyable highs along the way, but also a couple of concerning moments too. What matters at the end is that we got there and we can savour the highlights for a long time to come.”

Marcus Ericsson

“For me that was good, even though the whole team is obviously disappointed about the way it ended. It was an amazing experience finishing my first Monaco Grand Prix and the fact we’ve equalled the team’s best ever finish today is great, it’s just a shame it didn’t mean more after the fantastic job everyone did today. After starting from the pitlane I was pretty quickly up with the second Marussia when the safety car came out.

“The balance was ok and I was in a good rhythm, ahead of Sutil and Grosjean for a few laps but couldn’t do anything to hold back Sutil when he passed me in turn six. When the safety car came out again we stopped for the first time for a new set of supersofts and I could really push. The whole second stint was good, as was the final one on the second set of supersofts, giving me the chance to push to the flag. I held off Raikkonen for the last couple of laps and finished 11th which, for me, is a pretty cool way to end Monaco.”

Images courtesy of Octane Photographic

Jack Leslie

Jack Leslie

Jack Leslie is a freelance motorsport and Formula 1 journalist. He has been part of the Richland F1 team since the very start and made his F1 paddock debut for the website at the 2014 Austrian Grand Prix. Jack also writes for Car Throttle, RumbleStripNews, Formula1Blog, PureF1 and F1 Plus, as well as running a popular blog.