F1 »

F1 Monaco GP: Ricciardo powers to maiden F1 pole

A faultless Daniel Ricciardo returns Red Bull to the front of the grid with pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix, as Max Verstappen crashes out.
CLICK HERE for the full Monaco Grand Prix Qualifying results

Daniel Ricciardo will start an F1 race from pole position for the first time in his career after a peerless performance in qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix returned Red Bull to the front of the grid.

On a weekend that has seen the Red Bull team enjoy an upturn in form around the Principality, Ricciardo carried his promising practice pace through to qualifying with a superbly committed 1min 13.622secs lap, a full three tenths quicker than fellow front row sitter Nico Rosberg.

However, there was disappointment for team-mate and Spanish GP winner Max Verstappen as a crash in Q1 leaves him 21st on the grid.

With less than two tenths covering the top four after FP3, the stage was seemingly set for a similarly competitive fight for pole position, with Ricciardo and Red Bull very much in the mix as the RB12 – coupled to the upgraded Renault engine – demonstrated its nimble strength around the street circuit.

And so it proved when it mattered, Ricciardo unleashing the car's full ability in Q3 on the new ultra-soft tyre, the pace of the Australian through the tricky final sector accounting for much of the three tenths margin he commanded over Rosberg in second place.

Indeed, Rosberg and also Lewis Hamilton seemed to have the matching of Ricciardo in sectors one and two, but would flounder in the final sector to give second best to Red Bull, the team celebrating its first pole position since 2013.

Only the third occasion since the beginning of 2014 that a Mercedes has not started from pole position, Rosberg will still be pleased to start ahead of Hamilton on an eventful day for the defending champion as yet more technical issues crept in.

Getting on track late after a fuel pressure issue halted him at the end of the pit lane initially, Hamilton was forced to build up to his best lap, but despite setting a best time in sector one, would lose out by the end of the lap to place him third.

Quickest in FP3 but barely a factor in qualifying, Sebastian Vettel will start in fourth place with a lap almost a second slower than the revitalised Red Bull, while Nico Hulkenberg delivered Force India's best starting position of the year with a committed run to fifth.

Kimi Raikkonen qualified sixth, but will start a provisional 11th once he has taken his gearbox penalty, lifting Carlos Sainz, Sergio Perez, Daniil Kvyat and Fernando Alonso up a position between sixth and ninth.

Qualifying began with a bang when Felipe Nasr suffered a dramatic engine blow on his Sauber, prompting an early red flag, but it was Verstappen's crash out of the session that dominated the headlines.

The Spanish Grand Prix was on a quick final flier when he clipped the inside wall at turn 15, breaking the suspension on his Red Bull and crashing into the outside barrier, without harm. He will start 21st.

Elsewhere, Williams failed to progress beyond Q2, with Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa 11th (10th) and 14th, with Esteban Gutierrez and Jenson Button between them.



by Ollie Barstow



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
26.05.2016 - Free Practice 1, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12
26.05.2016 - Free Practice 1, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12
29.09.2016 - Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
29.09.2016 - Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12
29.09.2016 - Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR11
29.09.2016 - Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR11
29.09.2016 - Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
29.09.2016 - Eric Boullier (FRA) McLaren Racing Director
29.09.2016 - Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Jean Alesi (FRA)
29.09.2016 - Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid
29.09.2016 - Press conference, (L-R) Esteban Ocon (FRA) Manor Racing MRT05, Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR11, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31 and Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
29.09.2016 - Press conference, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
29.09.2016 - Kevin Magnussen (DEN) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
29.09.2016 - Kevin Magnussen (DEN) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16
29.09.2016 - Pascal Wehrlein (GER) Manor Racing MRT05
29.09.2016 - Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38
29.09.2016 - Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38 and Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34
29.09.2016 - Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW38 and Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2016 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.