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Mark Webber wins dramatic Monaco Grand Prix
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Mark Webber wins dramatic Monaco Grand Prix
Posted By: James Allen  |  16 May 2010   |  3:42 pm GMT  |  127 comments

Mark Webber won the Monaco Grand Prix today ahead of Sebastian Vettel and Robert Kubica. He leads the world championship for the first time in his career.

It was Red Bull’s second 1-2 finish of the season and the fourth team 1-2 we have had in six races, which must be some kind of record.

If it seemed effortless for Webber, the race was nonetheless full of drama with no less than four safety cars.


“It’s the greatest day of my life every F1 victory is special but to win on the streets here and join all the great winners is very special, ” said Webber. “You have to enjoy your victories and to get a 1-2 in the Principality is unique. This is the biggest F1 race you can win. I feel I’m driving pretty well, the fire is still in my belly.

“I’m not low on confidence. It’s two races, we’ve done well. If you can do this four or five times in a row you’re on a good run. I needed the result in Barcelona and we knew it would be a tight fight here. Let’s keep chipping away but things can change quickly in this game.”

Webber led away from pole with Vettel passing Kubica off the line for P2. Barrichello made a great start up to 6th place from 9th on the grid. But Williams team mate Nico Hulkenberg had a huge accident in the tunnel which brought out the safety car.

Jenson Button retired after just one lap due to an extraordinary operational error by McLaren where they left a bung in the radiator, which cooked it.

Starting from the pit lane Fernando Alonso took the opportunity offered by the safety car to pit and switch to the hard tyre. He had started on the super soft tyre, clearly hoping for just such a scenario.

It worked well for him as he was able to pass the new teams cars relatively easily and then when the cars in front of him pitted be picked up places, moving to 6th place by lap 22. But he lost a place at the end, when Michael Schumacher cheekily passed him in the last corner as the safety car was released to allow the cars to finish the race.

However the race stewards, of whom Damon Hill was a member this weekend, decided that the move was illegal and gave Alonso the sixth place back and handed Schumacher a penalty which dropped him out of the points. Alonso is now just three points behind the Red Bull drivers.

A second safety car was brought out on lap 32 by an accident for Rubens Barrichello, who suffered a puncture up the hill which sent him smashing into the barriers. He had to visit the stewards after throwing the steering wheel out of the cockpit into the path of Hamilton.

Webber opened up a 9 second lead before the pit stops and had extended that before the second safety car. But he soon pulled away from Vettel again at around 4/10ths of a second a lap as the race reached the midway stage.

Kubica was staying with Vettel, but did not have the pace in the car to mount any more of a challenge. Later in the race he flat spotted a tyre and concerned about the vibrations, he eased off.

A third safety car was deployed on lap 44 when the race control identified that a drain cover had come loose at Massenet corner, where Barrichello had gone off.

At the restart Webber pulled away again, Kubica locked a wheel under braking for St Devote, but he got away with it.

At the end there was a dramatic collision between Karun Chandhok and Jarno Trulli who collided at Rascasse with the Lotus ending up on top of the Hispania. Webber was right behind them, but managed to squeeze through a gap on the inside.

Red Bull has had the fastest car all season, but it has taken six races for them to lead both championships. Webber and Vettel are tied on 78 points, with Webber leading by virtue of having two wins. Red Bull have the lead in the constructors’ championship for the first time.

Of the upcoming tracks only Canada could be considered a weak track for them, with Ferrari and McLaren likely to have the upper hand. Red Bull has been working on a drag reducing rear wing and may have it in time for that race, where it would come in handy.

Apart from that, Red Bull will be untouchable in Turkey and especially Silverstone.

As for Webber he is becoming a bit like Nigel Mansell who was dismissed as a journeyman in his early career and who also came into his prime at the age of 33. It’s early days yet but it is looking as though the championship will be between him and Vettel, with Alonso and the supporting cast praying for more speed.

MONACO GRAND PRIX, Monte Carlo, 78 laps

1. Webber Red Bull-Renault 1h50:00.000
2. Vettel Red Bull-Renault + 0.448
3. Kubica Renault + 1.600
4. Massa Ferrari + 2.600
5. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes + 4.300
6. Schumacher Mercedes + 5.700
7. Alonso Ferrari + 6.300
8. Rosberg Mercedes + 6.600
9. Sutil Force India-Mercedes + 6.900
10. Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes + 7.300
11. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari + 8.100
12. Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari + 9.100
13. Petrov Renault + 4 laps

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1

Webber is my favorest driver!

2

It was my dream when I was young…

3

I like him and his team!

4

Webber is my favorest driver! I hope will will go farther and farther! Best wishes to my greatest driver!

5

Congratulations to Webber!

He’s a good driver, one of the best. I’m talking about his comments and his personality.

6

The sidewall of the cockpits were raised few year ago but I think it is useless if a hit coming from the top.

Other thing that the sidewalls most probably following the tech regs.

7

If Webber wins the title this year the majority of people will say it was down to the car and not talent.

If Vettal wins the title the majority of people will says its down to his talent more than the car.

So you can see a pattern from last year that Webber will be forever clumped in the same Jenson Button group by the critics.

Which is a shame because F1 fans should realize that winning a championship

is not all about having some talent, getting everything handed to you on a plate, signing with a good team and an expectation that everything will come to you.

It is also about all the pieces falling into place and working extremely hard and working with your team over a long period of time.

I for one would much rather see a driver improving throughout their career and earning a championship win over time rather than some 20 year old winning it in their first or second season.

That is why I value theNigel Mansall or Jenson Button championship wins much higher than Hamilton’s any day.

8

As a Schumacher fan its dissapointing but he clearly broke that part of the sporting code. However I’d rather he been simply dropped back behind Fernando.

9

Lewis Hamilton in the pre race show, saying cocky things like “there’s only 24 of us in the world who get to drive this track, and only a few of us who are any good at it.”

He also called his car “his queen”. Trying to put forth a very cool suave image.

Then halfway into the race.. his race engineer comes on “Lewis you need to start saving the brakes, your being too hard on your Queen”.. then Lewis loses his cool and says “What the hell.. do you want me to race these guys or not?”

So the guy who is trying extra hard to be cool outside of the cockpit, is one of the least cool in it. With no regard for his team. They are not your slaves Lewis.

He’s a good driver, one of the best. I’m talking about his comments and his personality.

10

It’s good to see Webber in the zone.:)

11

Is it possible to lead the world championship when you’re tie on points? I thought the number of wins thing is only to decide a winner at the end of the championship. Technically, I wouldn’t give him the accolade of “leading the championship for the first time in his career”! 😛

12

Well the FIA would and that’s good enough for me

13

Stellar stuff from Webber & Red Bull.

He has had a magnificent 10-12 days, lets see if he can turn that into 10-12 weeks!

Also, Robert isn’t the most good looking of blokes, but he looks mighty handsome in a red podium cap and smiling!

Well done Kubica.

14

It’s good to see Webber in the zone. He’s traded that haunted look he had a few weeks back with Vettel who must be spitting feathers.

James, have you been reading the McLaren race commentary log on their website? It’s rather censored. Check out the dialog between Hamilton and his race engineer on lap 38 when the engineer asked him to adjust brake balance and then compare it to what was actually said in the race (BBC iPlayer 1hr 47mins)

15

What is it with Rubhino,if he’s not letting springs fly he;s throwing his steering wheel dangerously into the path of others.Gold watch time me thinks.

16

Bevan, you can hardly blame Rubens for his spring falling off!

17

Yeah,it was a tongue in cheek comment Nick,but still,you would think Rubens would know better eh.

18

James, your pointing out the similarity between the careers of Mansell and Webber is right on the money!

19

Chandhok vs. Trulli accident show again how dangerous the open cockpit. It was a big luck that Karun did’t get hurt.

The sidewall of the cockpits were raised few year ago but I think it is useless if a hit coming from the top.

Other thing that the sidewalls most probably following the tech regs. templates instead of the real driver head positions.

20

James a terrible, basic mistake that ruined Jensons race, it seems a few mistakes are creeping into the McLaren team that they are not normally associated with and a car that was launced with much fanfare and promise has not progressed.

Do you think Martin Whitmarsh is being spread too thinly now he is also the chief executive officer of McLaren group and duty chairman of McLaren automotive as well as being team principal of the F1 team?

Maybe the race team needs his full attention to start delivering results and cut out the basic errors?

21

Amidst it all, it’s Barrichello I’m thinking about. No doubt he was hugely disappointed and his little moment with the steering wheel has already cost him an interview with the stewards – but that will be as nothing compared with the talking to he’s going to get from Frank Williams. Not only did he cause the unnecessary destruction of a very, very expensive bit of kit, but in doing so he showed a great deal of disrespect for a piece of Williams engineering and, as anyone who knows anything about Williams will be aware, you just don’t do that!

22

I have just read my comment again and realised it could be misconstrued. So, to clarify:

I’m not accusing Rubens of crashing the car through his own mistake. In fact, my comment stemmed from seeing his uncharacteristically bad-tempered reaction to a DNF that wasn’t his fault.

I think he can feel quite aggrieved at losing out on a prime point-scoring opportunity, particularly since he had qualified so well. My real point was that chucking the steering wheel away ain’t going to make him more popular in Grove.

23

Engineering failures cost Williams both their cars at Monaco and it’s very fortunate that nobody was injured in their resulting crashes. Time for some serious internal investigations, especially given the company’s history.

24

Regardless of who you are routing for, 2010 is shaping up to be a cracking season. Webber looked imperious from pole today. Every time the SC came out he lost his lead. But as soon as the SC went off, he opened up a gap between himself and Vettel and made it look easy. Alonso was fantastic and made several stellar passing moves. Anyone who questions his unofficial title of “most complete driver” should sit up and take notice. Aside from Webber, Alonso was THE star of the day.

25

Congratulations to Webber!

Jenson’s early retirement was something of a blessing in disguise for his devotees, as they will not be required to make excuses for him.

As is generally the case, at Monaco – the driver’s circuit, the one place where a gifted driver can transcend sub-standard machinery – he was average to say the very least. In his ten outings at Monaco, he has managed two drives which could be described as classy, and in both cases he had at his disposal machinery that was vastly superior to most, if not all, of his rivals.

26

Fantastic win, Webber, a very likeable guy and putting quite a bit of pressure on “Wunderkind” Vettel.

Fantastic Fernando, yes, from 24th to 6th (Schumi move was illegal, not that Fernando was sleeping, mind you all that are so happy at any Alonso’s mistake or misfortune!).

And Schumi being Schumi again, following his style book, egding the regulations, when not blatantly breaching them. No points today, cheater.

27

To all of those Alonso haters:

Schumacher is penalized for that move. 🙂

28
Ian Blackwell

I’m astonished one is considered over the hill at 33. If I am not mistaken, the trend toward really young world champions is a fairly recent one and at 33 Webber would still be young for a wdc historically. Well done to him for an excellent drive. I think it is clear the wdc will be driving a red bull this year. Until today I would have had my money on Vettel but now I’m not so sure. Finally, did anybody else notice Hamilton’s slightly over the top petulance at being told to nurse his brakes? I respect the lad and honestly think he is the best driver out there (even when compared to a certain Spaniard) but he should take notes from his teammate on how to be gracious. JB was victim of a real team error and took it fairly well (at least in public).

29

I have my money on Vettel with Webber as a back up… Let’s hope I keep on smiling till the end of the season…

30

We don’t get to hear all the radio traffic and I get the impression the directors look out for hamilton’s radio transmissions in particular after Australia.

31

Did anyone else see Massa cross the yellow line when exiting the pits after his stop? Thought that sort of thing incurred a penalty? If it is the case, will he be penalised post race?

32

He didn’t cross the line he just touched it. Geeze hasn’t this already been covered.

33

Hi James. Would you take the view that the FIA’s decision regarding Schumacher encourages against ingenuity in the sport? I feel punishments such as the one received by Michael gives F1 a bad image, giving the impression that it’s a processional environment rather then a race.

34

Well he broke a rule, so I’m not sure what your point is here.

35

I think his point is that the rules/penalties seem to be going against one of the important goals of F1. Which should be to improve the show, and the entertainment factor of a GP.

Lewis wasn’t punished for weaving in Sepang, which lets face it.. if EVERYONE did what Lewis did, there would never be a single overtake ever.

And then Michael pulls off this brilliant cheeky move, and no he doesn’t get a warning or a reprimand. He loses all his points!

The goal should be to encourage overtaking. It’s the same thing when they changed the rules for the cars for the new 2009 aero regs, slicks, sleeker aero. But then they go and allow the DDD’s which completely negates the original rules changes in the first place.

F1 shoots itself in the foot again. 🙁 The teams and the drivers are held accountable, but the rules makers are not.

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