It is rare indeed that a Formula One qualifying session creates more talking points than the actual race, but there's no doubting the major news story of this weekend.
Initially it seemed Michael Schumacher had secured his fourth Monaco Grand Prix pole position. Pole at Monaco hasn't done him much good in the past, though. He won comfortably from pole in 1994 (his first career pole), but that was the first race after the death of Ayrton Senna, and consequently he was without any significant opposition.
He was the pole winner against expectations in 1996, driving the recalcitrant Ferrari F310, but threw it all away in the damp by losing the lead to Damon Hill at Ste Devote, before stuffing it into the barriers at the Portier before the first lap was out. His last pole in the Principality was in 2000, when a surefire win evaporated with a broken rear suspension, following a tap with the barrier.
Gilles Villeneuve (Ferrari) in the 1980 Canadian GP. He started 22nd and finished fifth © LAT
Late on Saturday night came the news that Schumacher would be starting last rather than first, and it goes without saying that this presents a major problem at Monaco. Looking back in history, the last man to score points in Monaco from so far back was Alex Caffi, who piloted his Arrows-Ford A11B to fifth place from 22nd on the grid, 16 years ago.