McLaren had Settled for Montoya Win

Juan Pablo Montoya's disappointment at being disqualified from the Canadian Grand Prix was compounded on Monday when McLaren boss Ron Dennis revealed the team had settled on the Colombian winning the race prior to him being black-flagged

McLaren had Settled for Montoya Win

Montoya was running ahead of teammate Kimi Raikkonen when race leader Fernando Alonso retired after brushing the wall. Switching positions would have guaranteed Raikkonen the 10 points for his World Championship bid.

But Dennis has admitted that the team had decided that their drivers should hold position and allow Montoya to head Raikkonen across the finish line.

The decision to not allow the two drivers to battle each other was not conveyed to either driver during the race however - because the team did not want to cause any unnecessary frustration.

"We decided to slow the pace of both cars after the Renault went out and they were driving to a 1-2 and not racing each other," said Dennis. "Managing that is not as simple as you might think, because you've got two guys who want to race and that puts a bit more tension on the pit wall."

The decision to allow Montoya to take the victory was fuelled in part by the fact that Raikkonen was suffering from a steering problem, which effectively meant that he would have struggled to overtake a fired up Montoya for the win.

Dennis said, however, that the team did not inform Montoya of Raikkonen's problem, partly to avoid other teams finding out about the drama. This factor caused some initial reluctance from the Colombian to slow his pace once Alonso was out.

"Juan Pablo is calm and struggled initially to understand why we were slowing him down," explained Dennis. "Although we speak in code on the radio we didn't feel it was appropriate to tell him Kimi was not in good enough shape to challenge him.

"We definitively put the decision to come 1-2 first and there was no way Kimi would have been permitted to race."

shares
comments
US Preview Quotes: BAR
Previous article

US Preview Quotes: BAR

Next article

BAR Target Wins, Not Points

BAR Target Wins, Not Points
Load comments
Why thrilling Jeddah F1 circuit needs to be safer Plus

Why thrilling Jeddah F1 circuit needs to be safer

OPINION: Saudi Arabia's new F1 circuit delivered a memorable first event, although not necessarily for all the right reasons. In the wake of the chaotic race, drivers voiced their concerns about the track but small changes could make significant improvements ahead of a return in four months

The long-term F1 vision causing Haas’s short-term pain Plus

The long-term F1 vision causing Haas’s short-term pain

From ranking as one of the most impressive new teams to join the Formula 1 grid, Haas’s stock has plummeted along with its on-track performances over the past two seasons. Everything now hangs on whether its reforged alliance with Ferrari can deliver a better car – and whether its rookie drivers can set aside their quarrels. OLEG KARPOV asks if any of these goals are achievable…

The line Verstappen finally crossed in F1's first Jeddah race Plus

The line Verstappen finally crossed in F1's first Jeddah race

OPINION: Max Verstappen has made the 2021 Formula 1 championship. He’s taken the fight to the all-conquering Mercedes squad and its dominant champion, produced driving displays few can match. But he’s been on a controversial course too, and finally crossed a particular line in Jeddah

Formula 1
Dec 7, 2021
Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

An ill-tempered Saudi Grand Prix made Formula 1 more soap opera than sporting spectacle at times, but there were some strong performances up and down the field on the world championship's first visit to Jeddah

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series Plus

How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series

The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a race packed full of incident as Formula 1 2021's title contenders repeatedly clashed on track. Lewis Hamilton won out over Max Verstappen to level the scores heading into next weekend's Abu Dhabi finale, as Jeddah turned F1 into a drama series

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance Plus

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance

Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2021
How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes Plus

How Formula E factors could negate Red Bull's Jeddah practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1
Dec 3, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Plus

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021