The Netherlands, Spain and GB take F1 podium in Monaco

by Deborah Cater
Sainz at F1 Monaco GP. Image: https://www.formula1.com/
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A first in several respects during the Monaco Grand Prix last Sunday. The Dutchman Max Verstappen, Carlos Sainz from Spain and Brit Lando Norris formed the podium of the F1 race in Monaco.

Spain had cause for celebration when Sainz took his first podium place this season. Second place for the Spaniard meant the 100th podium place for Spain in F1 history.

Carlos Sainz from Madrid had a good chance with his Ferrari in Monaco. In the free practice sessions held prior to the race, Sainz also finished in the top 3. The man from Madrid said pre-race he believed Ferrari could pose a major threat to Red Bull and Mercedes.

Race full of surprises

Race favourite Hamilton, for example, finished in seventh place. This he blamed on being sent into the pit too early for a tyre change. After his pit stop, he couldn’t possibly make up for the lost places. However, he managed to grab one point at the end of the race with the fastest race lap.

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Technical failure keeps favourites far from podium

The Monaco circuit is known for its tight corners and overtaking is almost impossible on this track. Mainly technical failures cause some favourites to end up far from the podium. For example, the other Mercedes driver, Bottas, was unable to finish the race because the mechanics couldn’t get a wheel off during a pit stop. 

Leclerc from Monaco also placed well during the free practice sessions and qualifying. In one of the last laps of qualifying, the Monegask crashed. The problems seemed to have been resolved but in the lap prior to the race, the gearbox damage was too great and Leclerc was unable to start at the last minute.

Spanish racer “too old”

In addition to the record for Spain, a new record was almost set. With Verstappen, Sainz and Norris in the top 3, the Monaco Grand Prix had the second youngest podium ever in F1. The record, however, remained at the Brazilian Grand Prix in 2019 with Max Verstappen, Pierre Gasly and Carlos Sainz on the podium. During the press conference after the race, Verstappen joked to the Madrileño: “Carlos, you screwed up man. You are too old.”

After this race in Monaco, the Netherlands will take the lead for the first time in a Formula 1 world championship. Sainz’s points for second place now put him in seventh place in the 2021 World Cup.

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