F1 2008, Round 6 - Monaco
Firstly, Massa spent the entire week leading up to the race saying how much he disliked the street circuit, and that he didn’t feel at all comfortable there, and then he put his Ferrari on pole. Lewis Hamilton, who had been champing at the bit to get going for his favourite race, was starting third behind Raikkonen in the other Ferrari.
The other notable qualifying incident was Coulthard, who crashed into the wall upon exiting the tunnel, and disappeared down a run off road at about 180 mph. He was unharmed, and fine to race the next day.
The weekend was spotted with rain showers that mixed things up nicely. It rained overnight before qualifying and before the race, and as the drivers were heading to the grid, it started once again.
Therefore, the Monaco GP was all about tyres and strategy, something that Lewis Hamilton and McLaren got completely right. Hamilton drove a stunning race from third on the grid, through a clout with the barriers and an unexpected pit stop, to a well deserved win. It’s not often you can say that the winner at Monaco also bashed into the barrier at some point.
But Hamilton wasn’t the only one to make contact during the race, in fact, there were so many, it’d be impossible to list them out here. Alonso was struggling in the Renault, he had a couple of incidents throughout the race. The worst of these was an overtaking manoeuvre on Heidfeld at the hairpin, which resulted in a collision and a traffic jam back up the track.
Rosberg was having a relatively straight forward race, although he did lose his front wing during the traffic jam I just mentioned. However, he crashed during the last few laps of the race and caused a safety car to come out. He was unhurt, although taken to hospital for precautionary checks.
During the restart from the safety car, Sutil in the Force India was in a Ferrari sandwich which Kimi Raikkonen behind him. Sutil had kept his head down and got on with his race, quietly creeping his way to a points position that would have been incredible for the Force India team. However, Raikkonen lost control coming out of the tunnel and hit the back of the Force India, forcing it to pit and then retire. It was an awful moment for the team, such a lost opportunity.
However, the entire race was full of exciting incidents and mixed strategies, and just goes to show that a little bit of rain really can make all the difference.
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