Monaco Grand Prix: Team-Mate Battles

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Sebastian Vettel

Standings: Vettel 5, Webber 1

Sebasitan secures another intra-team victory for leading Mark home from lights to flag. It’s been a while since Webber showed he was able to out-pace his team-mate over an entire race distance and a loss in Monaco will have done little to heighten his spirits. A solid performance by the reigning World Champion increased his lead over Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso, who by all accounts had disappointing races.

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Fernando Alonso

Standings: Alonso 5, Massa 1

Massa was forced to start the race from the rear of the grid after an accident in P3. While Fernando held onto a strong points position, his team-mate failed to get higher than 15th. A suspension failure brought an abrupt end to the Brazilian’s race and Alonso was forced to play a long game of damage limitation for all 78 laps. A little less energetic than we’re used to him being, Fernando seemed out of sorts in the tight streets on Sunday.

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Jenson Button

Standings: Button 5, Perez 1

Despite some exciting driving early in the event, Perez’s luck eventually caught up with him in the form a Raikkonen-driven Lotus. It’d been a mixed race for Sergio, who at times showed brave determination but which often revealed his tendency to perhaps be a little too enthusiastic at times. While Jenson was all too keen on airing his many complaints on the radio, he still finished the race without jeopardising another driver’s. Monaco was a solid step forward for the team and they looked likely to finish with both cars in the points all weekend.

Lotus F1 Team -  Official LogoKimi Raikkonen

Standings: Raikkonen 5, Grosjean 1

Another solid race from Raikkonen, though late-race contact with Perez sent him out of the points with a single lap to go. Some audacious driving saw him pass three cars in the closing moments of the race and saw him through to finish 10th. Raikkonen was compromised by a late-race safety car, rendering his soft tyres with no advantage over his super-soft shod rivals. Lotus weren’t strong in Monaco and will need to recover quickly if they hope to challenge for the title this year. Grosjean saw his fourth session-ending incident in the shape of a Toro Rosso when he collided with 13th-placed Daniel Ricciardo on the run to the Nouvelle Chicane, ending the race for both drivers. Now six races into the year, any further weekends like these won’t be acceptable from Grosjean.

Mercedes_AMG_Petronas_logoNico Rosberg

Standings: Rosberg 2, Hamilton 4

A dominant performance from Rosberg saw him take an unchallenged victory. The German came into his own throughout the weekend, not being topped once in all five sessions. Despite two safety cars and a red flag, the 27-year-old made no mistakes on his run to the flag, leaving the Red Bulls and his team-mate well behind in his journey. By contrast, Lewis Hamilton looked decidedly second-rate to his team-mate and struggled for pace all weekend. The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is one of Lewis’s strongest tracks and he’ll be looking to assert himself in two weeks time. Rosberg’s on a high at the moment and pole in Canada will set him up strongly for another solid race against Hamilton. With the track’s wider confines and greater degradation expected next round, Mercedes will surprise if they are as strong in Montreal as they were here.

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Nico Hulkenberg

Standings: Hulkenberg 5, Gutierrez 1

A strong qualifying performance from Nico placed himself 11th and well ahead of his team-mate for the race. Neither driver was able to make inroads during the race and Hulkenberg finished where he started while Gutierrez benefitted from retirements ahead, eventually taking the flag two places behind his team-mate, though only seven tenths behind after 78 laps. Sauber will be disappointed to have missed out on points this round and conceded three to their closest rivals, Toro Rosso. Hulkenberg hasn’t scored a point since China and Gutierrez is yet to get off the mark and while their car has shown flashes of great speed, it’ll need more than sporadic pace to push ahead of Toro Rosso in the standings.

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Adrian Sutil

Standings: di Resta 4, Sutil 2

The Monaco result was a strong recovery for Sutil, who had for the last few races been in the shadow of his team-mate. A solid eighth in qualifying was improved to fifth in the race and an important 10 points after a faultless performance through the unforgiving streets of Monte Carlo. di Resta was compromised in Q1 and started Sunday’s event in 17th place. Despite the tight confines of the circuit, a solid recovery saw him claw back to ninth and take two points. The team’ll be happy to have taken yet more points away from McLaren in Monaco, but if anything the recovery from di Resta suggests there’s a lot of pace in the car – the team and drivers just needs to deliver a perfect weekend.

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Valtteri Bottas

Standings: Maldonado 3, Bottas 3

After Maldonado secured the fastest lap time in Q1, it was his team-mate who came the the fore in the second session, eclipsing his team-mate by over 1.5 seconds. While Pastor’s track record at the venue would have lead one to expect him to put himself ahead of the second Williams during the race, Valtteri drove conservatively to 12th place by the end of the race. He was running 11th on the final lap before being surpassed by a fast-moving Kimi Raikkonen and one must hope it’s only a matter of time until the team score their first points of 2013. For Maldonado, a move around the outside of Tabac was optimistic, but the Venezuellan had every right to place his car where he had it. The inexperience of Max Chilton ended his race in spectacular fashion and was his third retirement in six races.The FW35 featured a number of modifications for the sixth round of the season, but it still wasn’t what they were after.

4218438_origJean-Eric Vergne

Standings: Vergne 2, Ricciardo 4

After making it through to Q3 for the first time in 2013, Jean-Eric Vergne drove a strong race to finish well inside the points. The Frenchman capitalised on a day when his team-mate was unable to make any impression and clawed back three points to bring his own stock value closer to what Red Bull might want when reviewing Mark Webber’s potential replacements. Ricciardo was unable to deliver the goods in qualifying and suffered on Sunday as a result. A late-race collision with Romain Grosjean ended his race, though I can’t be sure it was wise to call the offending Frenchman “an idiot”. Daniel’s still young and has plenty of opportunities to make a fool of himself; he’ll look quite hypocritical if he makes any mistakes like this in the future. A few more drives like Vergne managed this weekend and he might have an outside chance of being promoted for 2014.

caterham-f1-team-logo-design-via-imjustcreative3 Giedo van der Garde

Standings: Pic 4, van der Garde 2

If making it through to Q2 in the series’s most prestigious race wasn’t enough, the Dutch rookie went one better and out-qualified a Williams. His race was cut back abruptly when an early-race incident sent him into the pit lane for repairs. None the less, a solid qualifying provided him with the stand-out result for Caterham and earnt him a Team-Mate Battles point. Now that we’re back in Europe, Giedo looks to have found his rythm on tracks he’s more familiar with. While Pic can’t be blamed for a gearbox failure, he’ll want to keep an eye out for his team-mate from here on.

marussia-logo-2 Max Chilton

Standings: Bianchi 5, Chilton 1

By virtue of a reliable car, Chilton finally takes a point off of his team-mate. Despite heavy contact with Pastor Maldonado, the Brit was able to continue and eventually crossed the line in 14th. Bianchi’s race was started poorly when his car tried to call it quits at the start of the warm-up lap. He was later the second victim of the Maldonado-Chilton incident, when the damaged impact barrier drifted into his path and caused severe damage to the front end of the car. I can’t imagine Jules pulling over on another driver on the run to Tabac. Chilton’s shown an improvement in the last few races, but he’ll need to do better if he wants to put a fight up against his team-mate.

 

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2 thoughts on “Monaco Grand Prix: Team-Mate Battles

  1. Pingback: Canadian Grand Prix: Team-Mate Battles | tobyhusseyreports
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