By Adam Tate, Associate Editor
With Sebastian Vettel’s victory in the Monaco Grand Prix, Scuderia Ferrari snapped a 16 year winless street on the streets of the principality. Much like the last Ferrari victory in Monte Carlo, which Michael Schumacher won in 2001, this was also a one-two for the team, with pole sitter Kimi Raikkonen who came home a disappointed second.
It was the team’s first one-two in since the infamous German Grand Prix of 2010, where Felipe Massa who was leading the race a year to the day after his near fatal accident in Hungary, was forced to give up the win to team mate Fernando Alonso. To add perspective to this, in the time since Germany 2010, McLaren has had zero one-twos, Red Bull has had 11, and Mercedes has had an astonishing 31.
It was Vettel’s 45th career victory which means he maintains his spot of fourth on the all time list behind Schumacher (91), Lewis Hamilton (55), and Alain Prost (51).
It was Ferrari’s 227th Grand Prix victory, but only their 9th win in Monaco despite being the oldest and most successful team in F1. It was also their second win drought of 16 years there. Ferrari won in Monaco in 1981 with Gilles Villeneuve, then had to wait till 1997 with Michael Schumacher to win again. Schumacher won Monaco a further two times for Ferrari, in 1999 and as mentioned previously, in 2001.
Kimi Raikkonen scored his 17th career pole position which ties him with Jackie Stewart for 17th all time. It was Raikkonen’s first pole position in 3,262 days or 129 races, his last pole position came at the 2008 French Grand Prix, where he was also beat by his Ferrari team mate who started second, that time it was Felipe Massa. Massa also set Ferrari’s last pole position at Monaco in 2008. Kimi’s long wait broke Mario Andretti’s record of the longest gap between pole positions, which was 2,940 days, between the 1968 US Grand Prix and the 1976 Japanese Grand Prix.
Daniel Ricciardo gave Red Bull reason to smile by taking the final podium position in third place. It is Ricciardo’s 20th podium, which moves him one ahead of the likes of Mario Andretti and Dan Gurney. He is now tied for 48th all time with John Watson, and 1950 World Champion Giuseppe Farina. It was Ricciardo’s third Monaco podium in four years, and his second successive podium of the season.
Mercedes had a 21 race podium streak, the fourth longest of all time, end when neither Valtteri Bottas or Lewis Hamilton reached the top three on Sunday. A Mercedes driver had been on the podium in every race since the 2016 Spanish Grand Prix, when Hamilton and Nico Rosberg crashed out in spectacular fashion.
Sergio Perez also lost his 15 race points streak after his late race collision with Danil Kvyat caused the overly optimistic Force India driver to make an unscheduled pit stop. The new current longest points streak is shared by Vettel and Hamilton at 11 races.
With Fernando Alonso away at the Indy 500, Jenson Button made his 306th and presumably final Grand Prix start. It ties him with Michael Schumacher for second all time. Rubens Barrichello has the record with 322.
Speaking of McLaren, it was the first time since 2009 that the team failed to score points in Monaco. To add insult to injury, it was the team’s third double DNF of the season.
Things went slightly better for them at the Indy 500 where Alonso led 27 laps. The first time the he has led a race since the 2014 Hungarian Grand Prix with Ferrari. Unfortunately his race was cut short by a sight common for McLaren, a Honda engine failure.