Monaco Grand Prix: Hamilton escapes contact with Verstappen to win

Lewis Hamilton survived late contact with Max Verstappen to win Formula 1's Monaco Grand Prix, as an incident in the pitlane with Valtteri Bottas ultimately cost Verstappen second place

Monaco Grand Prix: Hamilton escapes contact with Verstappen to win

Hamilton resisted more than 60 laps of pressure from Verstappen to hold on to victory despite having to manage softer tyres than his pursuers.

As Verstappen was not able to get past the Mercedes and edge clear - despite a late dive at the chicane two laps from the end - he fell from second to fourth at the flag because of a five-second time penalty.

Verstappen picked that up for an unsafe release in the pits that had got him ahead of the second Mercedes of Bottas, who he made light contact with and forced into the wall.

Verstappen therefore fell behind both Sebastian Vettel's Ferrari and Bottas, who completed the podium despite needing to make a second pitstop under the safety car after his brush with the wall caused a puncture.

Poleman Hamilton retained his advantage at the start ahead of Bottas, despite Verstappen having a look inside Bottas at Ste Devote on the first lap.

The leaders held station for the opening stint, which was cut short by a safety car after Charles Leclerc - who started 15th following Ferrari's qualifying blunder - littered the track with debris from a dramatic puncture.

Leclerc hit the inside wall at Rascasse and half-spun after trying to pass Nico Hulkenberg for 11th.

He tried to continue but picked up a puncture and scattered a large amount of debris as the rubber fell apart around the rest of the lap.

Mercedes opted to pit both its cars under the caution and Bottas dropped back behind Hamilton under the safety car to try to create enough of a gap to avoid losing time.

When they stopped Verstappen was released just as Bottas was coming past, and though Verstappen was a nose ahead a small amount of contact forced Bottas to kiss the wall on the right-hand side.

The incident damaged Bottas's wheel rim and caused a slow puncture, but with the safety car still deployed he only dropped behind Vettel to fourth - and eventually Verstappen was awarded a five-second penalty for the unsafe release.

Once the race resumed, Verstappen hounded Hamilton constantly, but only got close enough to really start attacking the five-time world champion in the final 10 laps.

He had a brief look to the outside of the hairpin with eight laps left but was not close enough on the exit of Portier to get a proper run at Hamilton into the chicane.

On lap 76 of 78 he lunged Hamilton into the chicane, but Hamilton moved across. Verstappen locked up and they made minor wheel-to-wheel contact - Verstappen's right-front to Hamilton's left-rear - and Hamilton took to the escape road, but both continued without damage.

Hamilton's win extended his championship lead over Bottas to 17 points.

Vettel and Bottas were slightly adrift of the leaders across the line but within five seconds, crucially enough to consign Verstappen to fourth.

Verstappen's Red Bull team-mate Pierre Gasly finished in fifth, his best result since his move to the senior team, and earned fastest lap after building enough of a gap to make a late, free pitstop for fresh soft tyres.

Behind, Carlos Sainz Jr earned his best result for McLaren in sixth place after opting not to pit under the early safety car.

That strategy was replicated by Daniil Kvyat and Alex Albon, who used it to great effect to finish seventh and eighth for Toro Rosso.

Renault's Daniel Ricciardo finished ninth, the lead midfield runner who did pit under the safety car.

Romain Grosjean, who opted for the same strategy as Sainz/Kvyat/Albon, completed the points scorers for Haas.

Leclerc was the only retirement from the grand prix after initially endeavouring to continue following his early setback but soon parking his battered Ferrari in the pits.

There was a separate Rascasse incident shortly after the safety car, when Antonio Giovinazzi hit Robert Kubica and spun the Williams.

The track was briefly blocked, holding up a few cars, but Kubica was able to reverse and get out of the way quickly - preventing anything worse than localised yellow flags.

Race result

Pos Driver Car Laps Gap
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 78 1h43m28.437s
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 78 2.602s
3 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 78 3.162s
4 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Honda 78 5.537s
5 Pierre Gasly Red Bull/Honda 78 9.946s
6 Carlos Sainz Jr. McLaren/Renault 78 53.454s
7 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso/Honda 78 54.574s
8 Alexander Albon Toro Rosso/Honda 78 55.200s
9 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 78 1m00.894s
10 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 78 1m01.034s
11 Lando Norris McLaren/Renault 78 1m06.801s
12 Sergio Perez Racing Point/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
13 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 77 1 Lap
14 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 77 1 Lap
15 George Russell Williams/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
16 Lance Stroll Racing Point/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
17 Kimi Raikkonen Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 77 1 Lap
18 Robert Kubica Williams/Mercedes 77 1 Lap
19 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 76 2 Laps
- Charles Leclerc Ferrari 16 Accident damage

Drivers' standings

Pos Driver Points
1 Lewis Hamilton 137
2 Valtteri Bottas 120
3 Sebastian Vettel 82
4 Max Verstappen 78
5 Charles Leclerc 57
6 Pierre Gasly 32
7 Carlos Sainz Jr. 18
8 Kevin Magnussen 14
9 Sergio Perez 13
10 Kimi Raikkonen 13
11 Lando Norris 12
12 Daniil Kvyat 9
13 Daniel Ricciardo 8
14 Alexander Albon 7
15 Nico Hulkenberg 6
16 Lance Stroll 4
17 Romain Grosjean 2
18 Antonio Giovinazzi 0
19 George Russell 0
20 Robert Kubica 0

Constructors' standings

Pos Constructor Points
1 Mercedes 257
2 Ferrari 139
3 Red Bull/Honda 110
4 McLaren/Renault 30
5 Racing Point/Mercedes 17
6 Haas/Ferrari 16
7 Toro Rosso/Honda 16
8 Renault 14
9 Alfa Romeo/Ferrari 13
10 Williams/Mercedes 0



shares
comments
Anatomy of an awful Ferrari blunder

Previous article

Anatomy of an awful Ferrari blunder

Next article

Hamilton "does not know" how he held off Verstappen for Monaco win

Hamilton "does not know" how he held off Verstappen for Monaco win
Load comments
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Plus

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191
 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021