Le Grand Retour
Paul Ricard 2018
French Grand Prix
How the Monaco GP will unfold
How the Monaco GP will unfold
Posted By:   |  23 May 2009   |  5:47 pm GMT  |  19 comments

Monaco is always a tough race to predict because of the 50% chance of a safety car. For this reason a lot of teams split their strategies, putting one car on quite a light fuel load and the other on a heavier one. That way, if a safety car comes out early and wrecks the lighter cars’s race, the heavier car has a chance.

Last year Sebastian Vettel went from 18th on the grid to finish fifth, thanks to safety cars and Lewis Hamilton could do something similar if fate intervenes.

Jenson Button did a sublime job today, with a decent amount of fuel in the car and he is looking good at the front. I don’t think he faces much risk from the KERS of Raikkonen’s Ferrari at the start because the KERS only kicks in after three seconds and they will be almost at St Devote corner by then. Having said that, Button’s starts haven’t been that special this season, so he will have to get the bite absolutely right in order to keep Kimi behind him.

Kimi said this evening that he has nothing to lose, he is not part of the championship, so he can afford to risk more at the start than Button. Barrichello is third with a decent amount of fuel on board and he will be resisting Vettel who is very light in fourth place. Vettel’s strategy was damaged by getting stuck behind Nakajima on his final run. Red Bull had gone for the extreme low fuel option to grab pole and try to make a break at the front. Now he has three cars in front of him and a more difficult challenge.

Here are the fuel weights and the laps each car will stop on:

1. Jenson Button 647.5 Lap 20/21
2. Kimi Raikkonen 644.0 Lap 18
3. Rubens Barrichello 648.0 Lap 22
4. Sebastian Vettel 631.5 Lap 12
5. Felipe Massa 643.5 Lap 18
6. Nico Rosberg 642.0 Lap 17/18
7. Heikki Kovalainen 644.0 Lap 18
8. Mark Webber 646.5 Lap 21
9. Fernando Alonso 654.0 Lap 25
10. Kazuki Nakajima 668.0 Lap 33
11. Sebastien Buemi 670.0* Lap 34
12. Nelson Piquet 673.1* Lap 36
13. Giancarlo Fisichella 693.0* Lap 47
14. Sebastien Bourdais 699.5* Lap 51
15. Adrian Sutil 670.0* Lap 34
16. Lewis Hamilton 645.5* Lap 20
17. Nick Heidfeld 680.0* Lap 40
18. Robert Kubica 696.0* Lap 49
19. Jarno Trulli 688.3* Lap 44
20. Timo Glock 700.8* Lap 51

* I will be doing a live text chat at 9-30am UK time Sunday on the new JA on F1 toolbar which you can download on Firefox.

In the past week, we had a successful trial with a new gadget that we hope will make following the F1 scene easier and more fun for you. It’s a toolbar that you can add to your browser, if you use Interner Explorer or Firefox on a PC (including Linux) or a Mac. Download from


We have built in a range of news services and feeds, widgets that display our latest photo features, audio blogs and a new chat service we hope to run after the Monaco race is done and dusted.

The idea is that a bolt will not be tightened nor a contract drafted without you having a sniff of it on your desktop. It’s easy to put on and off, anyway, so we invite you to try it and let us know what you think.

[ PS: All updates on activities for the JAF1 community using the toolbar will be broadcast on that service alone and not on the blog. And any feedback about the toolbar should be posted using that service’s messaging tools. It will help keep the blog clear for F1 comments alone – Moderator ]

Featured News
Editor's Picks
Share This:
Posted by:

Add comment

E-mail is already registered on the site. Please use the Login form or enter another.

You entered an incorrect username or password

Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!

Also Heikki Kovalainen had a good race in Monaco last year. He started from the pit lane and finished eighth.


Hi James, which finger do we use to click on the mouse?
Only Kidding!


Lewis is starting 20th, not 16th — 10-place grid penalty for changing his gearbox.


Just wondering from James or someone else in the know.

Is the car weight on the cars in the top ten before or after the 3rd stage of qualifying where potential race fuel is burned off?


Update: you might be easily right, I am looking at previous years numbers. Apologies 🙂


James, are you sure you are righ with the numbers? Do you really think Glock will make first stop at 51st lap of 78 laps race?

Though information on fuel consumption per lap differ, some says 2.58 kg, other sources 1.74 kg.


So erm, am I missing something or where can we get the toolbar from? Also do you mind sharing a bit about what the toolbar actually is from a technical point of view? I dont like adding things in to my browser without knowing where they came from!


Enjoying all your info anyway!



Looks like an interesting race, especially if Kimi can get into the first corner first.

RBR really are not making their strategy work this season.


How you can install the toolbar? where can i find it?. Many Thanks


Widget/toolbar sounds interesting, but I’m surprised you’ve not posted a link for those less technically able.


Apologies if its obvious, but where are the links to the Firefox and IE add-ons?


James, where do you get your information for fuel consumption at the circuits? I used some data from the Williams website to calculate the first stints of each of the cars and consistently yielded results that were 2-3 laps later than yours.


Is the 3 second KERS delay written into the software as such, or is this related to the 100kph minimum deployment speed?


Tried the toolbar. I know you can’t cater for everyone but it’s not good on a 9″ (1024×600) netbook as it takes up too much of the very limited screen space. This is a pity since I’d be most likely to make use of a service like this whilst out & about (ie with the netbook) rather than when sitting at my desk.

Maybe the toolbar could be collapsed down to a single icon (say on the status bar) which popped up a menu with all the various facilities on it? (or maybe I could get a bigger netbook…)

Howard Hughes

No mention made however of the part that weather plays in Monaco. The last time I raced there, back in 2005, it was the weather that did for me. There I was, out in front, the line in sight, when I momentarily lost traction in a wet patch… From that split second my race was pretty much decided, and I was always going to come in second.

Sure enough, my then girlfriend, despite her heels, just darted ahead of me and got to the ticket window first.

How I got the last seat in the train carriage back to Nice I’ll never know, but it was a lesson I never forgot.



Missed the anouncement about the toolbar. Is there a download location ? I searched the add-ons in Firefx but nought.

Top Tags