Sergio Perez gets his third ever F1 race win at Monaco! Max Verstappen slots in P3 and Carlos Sainz Jr completes the podium.
Charles Leclerc missed on what could have been his first ever home race win due to a strategical mistake by Ferrari, who called him to the pits an extra time. The Monegasque ended the race just behind the podium, while George Russell keeps his active P5 streak.
Rain started to pour on track just before the planned race start time , forcing race control to stop the starting procedure in order to allow every team to change tyres accordingly.
At 15:16 drivers went out for a formation lap completed behind the safety car, but the session was red flagged just after it.
The race clock restarted at 16:05 once again behind the safety car, with Lance Stroll and Nicholas Latifi both hitting the wall under the pouring rain, Latifi at the hairpin damaging his front wing and Stroll getting a puncture.
At lap 3 a rolling start was announced, and the safety car returned into the pits. Lance Stroll and Nicholas Latifi almost collided while in the pit lane to repair some of the damage suffered earlier.
Some of the Red Bull affiliated drivers pit on the first race lap to swap the full wets for inters, but it appears it’s still to early for that as Gasly visibily struggles to keep it on track.
By Lap 7, however, the track looks much drier with Gasly setting the fastest lap time so far, which inspired other drivers like Sebastian Vettel and Yuki Tsunoda to swap their full wets for inters.
However, no one tried to complete moves in the first 11 laps of the GP between the wet track conditions and the narrow characteristics of Monaco.
The first actual on track pass was completed by Gasly on Zhou for P13 a couple of laps later, who then moves onto Daniel Ricciardo for his P12.
While Red Bull’s Sergio Perez was in favour of going for the inters, Carlos Sainz suggested instead to wait and swap directly for dries.
The first to change tyres at the front were Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Perez, pitting for inters.
During Lap 18, Esteban Ocon made contact with Lewis Hamilton as they fought for P8, forcing the Mercedes a bit off track. In the meantime, race leader Charles Leclerc as well as Max Verstappen pitted for inters.
The Monegasque rejoins the track just behind Sergio Perez, while the first drivers get on slick tyres as Alex Albon and Mick Schumacher return from their pits.
During lap 21 Kevin Magnussen is forced to retire the car for Haas’s first seasonal DNF due to a system water pressure loss.
Ferrari then goes for a double stack, pitting both Sainz and Leclerc for slicks at the same time and leaving the Monegasque extremely unhappy with his strategy as he’s now behind both Red Bulls, Norris and his teammate.
Perez stops at the lap after for the same hard tyres mounted by the Ferrari drivers, but returns in P1. Sainz tried to pass him, but almost lost it on the still damp track.
On Lap 27 Mick Schumacher suffered from an extremely hard crash due to a rear tyre blockage, which left his car broken in half at the swimming pool.
Luckily, the German driver is doing alright, but it has definitely been an awful day for Haas with a a double DNF. The safety car was brought immediately out.
The session was then red flagged during lap 30, in order to allow the marshals to repair the barriers in the safest way possible. Mercedes also used the time to change Hamilton’s damaged rear wing after him making contact with Ocon
The race restarted at 17:15, which means that the full race distance will not probably be covered with the clock set to stop at 18. Perez is in the lead, with Sainz and Verstappen completing the podium.
At the second rolling restart, Perez suffered from huge blockage, which might have taken a toll on his new medium tyres.
Alpine’s Ocon is handed a 5 seconds time penalty for his previous contact with Hamilton, who is now stuck behind a much slower Fernando Alonso, who develops an impressive 20 seconds gap to Norris ahead of him in P6.
Previously, Albon had received a five seconds penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage. After being in P18 for most of the race, with fifteen minutes left on the clock he was retired.
Sainz, with twenty minutes left in the race, went long at the chicane and is forced to give back time to Perez who develops a 3.5s gaps over him, with Verstappen only at 1.2 seconds from the Spaniard.
Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu almost lost the car at the Nouvelle Chicane while trying to pass Tsunoda, but managed in the end to keep it out of the barriers, but lost a position to Latifi.
Norris pitted again for mediums, taking into consideration his huge gap on Alonso, who went for the fastest lap, while at the back Tsunoda runs off at the first corner, going from P15 to last.
With six minutes until the chequered flag, the top four are all within two seconds, as Sainz tries to complete a move on Perez but suffered from blockage and had to back out. However, they have to deal with passing the lapped cars of Zhou and Latifi, and the positions stay the same.