Published On: Sat, May 26th, 2018

Monaco Grand Prix qualifying: Daniel Ricciardo on pole for Red Bull

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Daniel Ricciardo claimed pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix after Red Bull Formula 1 team-mate Max Verstappen missed qualifying thanks to his practice crash.

Ricciardo topped the first two stages of qualifying, with Verstappen unable even to take to the track thanks to damage sustained in a morning accident at the second part of Swimming Pool that forced a gearbox change, before banging in a 1m10.810s on his first run in Q3 to take top spot.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton briefly threatened Ricciardo’s position with the fastest first sector time of qualifying on his final flier, but lost pace later in the lap and ended up third behind Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel.

Ricciardo, meanwhile, looked set to improve, but dropped time in the final sector and ended up posting a lap 0.036 seconds slower than his first attempt.

This is only Ricciardo’s second pole position in F1, coming two years after his first at the same venue.

Kimi Raikkonen was fourth fastest, just 0.034s slower than Hamilton, with the second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas in fifth place.

Of the Q3 runners, only the Mercedes drivers attempted an alternative strategy by using ultrasofts for their first runs in Q2.

But neither Hamilton nor Bottas was quick enough and had to run again on hypersofts, meaning all of the top 10 will start on the softest Pirelli compound.

Esteban Ocon won the battle for best of the rest in sixth place, with just 0.160s covering the bottom five in Q3.

McLaren’s Fernando Alonso, Renault’s Carlos Sainz Jr, Force India’s Sergio Perez and Toro Rosso driver Pierre Gasly completed the top 10.

Nico Hulkenberg’s final lap in Q2 was not good enough to get him into the top 10, falling a tenth short of Gasly’s time.

McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne was shuffled down to 12th, having been sixth based on his time on the first runs, thanks to failing to improve on his second set of tyres – potentially as a result of a minor problem with the car.

Williams driver Sergey Sirotkin and Sauber’s Charles Leclerc were eighth and ninth respectively in Q1, but ended up 13th and 14th overall despite both making slight improvements in the second stage of qualifying.

Romain Grosjean was 15th for Haas, just 0.014s slower than Leclerc, as the team continued to struggle. He is also carrying a three-place grid penalty from his Spanish GP accident.

Toro Rosso driver Brendon Hartley was fastest of those to be eliminated in Q1 in 16th place.

His first run was not quick enough to avoid the dropzone, and he was only able to make an improvement of 0.224s on his second set of hypersofts.

A yellow flag at Ste Devote because Leclerc briefly went off meant he could not make a final attempt to get into the top 15.

Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson was 17th ahead of the Williams of Lance Stroll, with Kevin Magnussen’s difficult weekend continuing as he ended up in 19th and last place of the runners ahead only of Verstappen.

Provisional starting grid

Pos Driver Car Time Gap
1 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 1m10.810s
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1m11.039s 0.229s
3 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m11.232s 0.422s
4 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m11.266s 0.456s
5 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1m11.441s 0.631s
6 Esteban Ocon Force India/Mercedes 1m12.061s 1.251s
7 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Renault 1m12.110s 1.300s
8 Carlos Sainz Renault 1m12.130s 1.320s
9 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 1m12.154s 1.344s
10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso/Honda 1m12.221s 1.411s
11 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1m12.411s
12 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren/Renault 1m12.440s
13 Sergey Sirotkin Williams/Mercedes 1m12.521s
14 Charles Leclerc Sauber/Ferrari 1m12.714s
15 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso/Honda 1m13.179s
16 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 1m13.265s
17 Lance Stroll Williams/Mercedes 1m13.323s
18 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 1m12.728s
19 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 1m13.393s
20 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Renault



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