Rosberg claims Monaco pole despite dramatic error on final flyer
Red Bull Racing
Posted By: Justin Hynes  |  24 May 2014   |  2:22 pm GMT  |  391 comments

Nico Rosberg will start the Monaco Grand Prix from pole for the second year in a row, despite a final run mistake that saw him forced to take an escape road. The error brought out yellow flags, effectively ending any threat from team-mate Lewis Hamilton, who was forced to abandon his final run. Daniel Ricciardo claimed third place.

Hamilton had set his best first sector time but whether the Briton would have been able to find more in the final sectors will remain an unknown as ahead Rosberg momentarily lost control under braking for Mirabeau and was forced to take the escape road bringing out the yellows.

While Rosberg jumped out of his car and pumped his fist in the air in celebration, Hamilton was left stoney-faced by the incident.

“I just locked up, the outside front, I think it was, or the inside, I’m not sure, and that put me off line,” said Rosberg of the incident. “I was still trying to make it but in the last moment I had to turn out because I was going to hit the tyre wall. It was close but I managed to go into the escape road.

“I thought it was over once that happened, because I thought the track would ramp up and somebody else could beat the time but no, of course, in the end I’m really, really happy that it worked out in the end. To be on pole is fantastic, at home; couldn’t be better,” he added.

Rosberg then admitted that the incident had disadvantaged Hamilton but “that’s the way it is”.

“Of course I’m sorry for Lewis,” he said. “I didn’t know exactly where he was but once I was reversing I did see he was coming up. Of course that’s not great, but that’s the way it is.”

A clearly disgruntled Hamilton had little to say after the session, simply saying that didn’t have an answer when Rosberg admitted the incident had been a disadvantage for the Briton.

“It is ironic. But it’s OK. I was up a couple tenths so it’s OK,” he murmured.

Ricciardo claimed third, three tenths back, with team-mate Sebastian Vettel in fourth place, just under two tenths behind his team-mate.

The Australian too was displeased with how the session had panned out, saying that a late mistake had cost him.

“I think all three of us don’t seem to be too pleased with ourselves,” he said. “I think we left a bit on the table. We fought the car pretty hard in qualifying and trying to find a bit more from it. I thought I was getting around it OK but coming up to Turn 8 I just lost the rear completely on exit and pretty much the lap was gone after that. Frustrated, I think we could have been much closer. So a little bit disappointed.”

Unlike at other circuits, Q1 got off to a frantic start. Rosberg led the way out of pit lane and the German was soon followed by the bulk of the field, with only the Red Bulls choosing to sit out the opening skirmishes.

Rosberg set the early pace too with a time of 1:17.938, eight tenths quicker than Hamilton’s opener, and then lowered his own benchmark by three tenths. Hamilton soon closed the gap getting to within two tenths of his team-mate.

The Red Bulls eventually joined the fray after six minutes and both were quickly in the mix, with Ricciardo slotting into third and Vettel fifth.

Eleven minutes in, Toro Rosso rookie Daniil Kvyat, driving his first Monaco qualifying session in any series, lost control at the tunnel exit and hit the barriers, splintering his front wing and nose cone. He headed back for replacements and was soon circling again.

As the clock ticked down, Hulkenberg moved to the Supersofts, triggering a general move to the option, with only the Mercedes, Red Bulls and Fernando Alonso remaining on the prime tyre. The Spaniard though would eventually move to the red-banded tyre in securing fourth.

In the final moments of the session, Marcus Ericsson miscalculated, trying to pass Felipe Massa down the inside but the Swede only succeeded in pitching both into the barriers. Massa had already set a lap good enough for 10th on the end-of-segment timesheet but the incident meant he would eventually slide to 16th on the grid as he wasn’t able to take part in Q2.

When the flag fell it was the supersoft-shod Jean-Eric Vergne who topped the timesheet with a lap of 1:17.557, just over a tenth clear of Rosberg’s soft-tyre time of 1:17.678. Hamilton was third ahead of Alonso, Button and Ricciardo.

The eliminations, meanwhile, had a familiar cast to them, with 17th-placed Esteban Gutierrez ruled out of Q2, along with (P18-22) Adrian Sutil, Jules Bianchi, Max Chilton, Kamui Kobayashi and the hapless Ericsson.

Q2 saw everyone use the Supersofts and again it was Rosberg who set the pace ahead of Hamilton, Ricciardo and Vettel. Hamilton eventually moved ahead, putting in a lap of 1:16.354 to claim top spot, just over a tenth quicker than his team-mate.

The Mercedes pair also stretched away from their rivals, with Rosberg’s time six tenths clear of third-placed Vettel, who sealed the spot despite reporting and ERS problem. Alonso was fourth ahead of Ricciardo.

Elsewhere, Jean-Eric Vergne’s last-ditch effort was good enough to vault him to ninth but the Frenchman’s lap wasn’t as impressive as his rookie team-mate’s. After losing his front wing in Q1, Kvyat recovered to put in some impressive times in the second session, eventually finishing with a lap of 1:17.594, which was good enough for seventh behind Kimi Raikkonen and just in front of Kevin Magnussen. With Vergne ninth, the final Q3 place was claimed by Sergio Perez. Out, though, went Nico Hulkenberg, Jenson Button, Valtteri Bottas, Romain Grosjean and Massa.

The first runs in Q3 saw Rosberg steal back P1, the German becoming the first man to break the 1:16 barrier with a time of 1:15.989. Again, though hardly anything separated him from his team-mate, with Hamilton just five hundredths adrift. They were followed by Ricciardo and Vettel, the Australian three tenths behind Hamilton.

The final runs should have been the cue for another titanic battle between the Mercedes pairing but when Rosberg hit the brakes at Mirabeau he also unfortunately put the brakes on the drama – at least until the post-session analysis began.



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Sorry that something went wrong, repeat again!

I suppose Nico’s little drama adds new meaning to the term unforced error, but I don’t believe in co-incidences of this sort. A very cleverly contrived piece of theatre. I hope the FIA do bring in something to prevent those sort of tricks we can do without.


THIS IS GOING TO BE VERY CONTROVERSIAL, because in my personally opinion, I believe that Mercedes has already play ‘dirty tricks’ to favour Rosberg!!! Come on, Rosberg is a German in a German team!!! As long as the drivers finishes in a 1-2, then Mercedes would prefer Rosberg to win!? Look, in the previous race, Hamilton had to use the higher engine settings to keep ahead of Rosberg due to the ‘unfair’ situation he was in! He is a racer, a winner, so why was he chastised for wanting to win? And why did he have to do all that himself, where in fact, the team themselves should had told to do so! And why did the team change Rosberg’s tyre strategy so as to give him an advantage over Hamilton after the final pit stop!? Most teams would had kept the two drivers on the same strategy!

I don’t know what is actually happening in the Mercedes team and what’s going on between the two Mercedes garages, but I really hope that Mercedes is not favoriting Rosberg over Hamilton because he is German, like the Red Bull team ‘openly’ favoriting ‘Golden Boy’ Vettel over any of his team mates! This is just a warning to Mercedes that THIS IS NOT ON FOR THE WORLD’S VIEWING PUBLIC, let alone British fans! So, I hope Mercedes will be more like McLaren and let their two drivers race openly and fairly, with equal equipment and fair strategies, and we will support the team and the drivers!

Btw, nobody really believe that Rosberg made a ‘realy stupid’ mistake in the final seconds of qualifying in Monaco! Lol

As I have said before, what the FIA should do is to amend the rules slightly just for qualifying sessions, whereby the time is stopped for yellow flags! This is fairer for everybody and it will stop ‘cheaters’ even thinking about doing what Rosberg or Schumacher had done before, and, if it was a geniune mistake, then no other drivers are ‘punished’ for it!!!

Thanks for listening!?


[mod] Why would Mercedes spend something like 6 times the amount they spend on Rosberg on Hamilton just to favour Rosberg. That would seem to me to be a complete waste of resources.


Good question!

Well, I believe that when Mercedes signed Hamilton they didn’t know that Rosberg was going to be so competitive and close to Hamiltion.

Now that Rosberg has shown he is capable of winning the title, I believe that Mercedes is doing everything in their power the help him win (because it’s a German team), otherwise why change his tyre strategy to give him a second chance at winning in Bahrain/Spain, and chastised Hamilton for turning up his engine settings? I don’t unserstand this – isn’t this what any team would be telling their drivers to do to win?

And finally, if you believe in great conspiracy theories, then why didn’t Mercedes try and help Hamiltion beat Rosberg with a creative pit stop in Monaco before the safety car came out, and why did Hamilton lose over 2 second in his pit stops in Spain?


James, as I settle in front of the TV it occurs to me that this is being talked about Senna v Prost mark 2. However, isn’t it more like Mansel v Piquet. Britain v Rest of World. The slightly faster uncouth blockhead versus the slightly slower but as quick-on-his-day cultured, intelligent foreigner who is much better at the people / interpersonal skills side of being a racing driver. It appears Hamilton’s chip on the shoulder paranoia is reaching Mansel levels and it won’t do him any good.


On the other hand – Mansel has a set of records probably never to be matched (F1 and Indy Champ) and still finds the time to hand out trophies at the national karting awards gratis! I know I have one for 250 gearbox presented by himself and his wife.

What’s more he pays his own way, accepts no fee or hotel etc etc…

It is very easy to assume you have a handle on people and personalities due to the media coverage and what you see in the heat of the moment.

Far harder to accept you actually do not know and your assumptions based on such are most likely completely wrong..


My “assumptions” about Mansell are based on following F1 since the start of the 80s and listening to the opinions of highly regarded people such as Berger, Coulthard, Hill, Prost, Head, Williams, various journalists such as Richard Williams – the list goes on.

I didn’t question his achievements although it has to be asked why someone who was in a position to win 31 Grands Prix could only convert them into 1 World Championship. Put it this way, when they eat their breakfast in the morning, is it more likely that Piquet wishes he won 6 more Grands Prix or Mansell wishes he won 2 more World Championships?!


I really wish rosberg had not done that. I liked him as a personality and a driver. However I suspect that he cheated by faking that incident. When you go into a corner too hot, you don’t start working the wheel before you’ve got to the crisis point and before you start to lock up.
Someone just look at it. It compares to schumacher’s stunt at the rascasse, where he simultaneously turned and straightened the wheel while there was still margin to get the car round the corner.
I quote “Cheapest, dirtiest trick I ever saw”.
The problem with f1 drivers is they all get too moody when things don’t go their way. Rosberg has been acting like a big baby since Bahrain, as do so many others when their team mate out shines them. The fact is that drivers aren’t gentlemen any more, gone are the days where drivers put success and the team first. Like the relationship with DC and Hakkinen at mclaren.


rosberg cracked under pressure. he may have been advised by his dad. he even celebrated as if there was nothing wrong with it.

hamilton had him in the photo shoots. he stands next to rosberg without contact and rosberg puts his hand on him. in monaco, I think rosberg has learned from the best by holding his trophy in his right hand so that he doesn’t have to put his arm around hamilton.


Hi James,

Regarding your questions to the top 3 in the post qualy press conference, I am really wondering why, when introducing both Lewis and Nico, that their team was introduced as ‘AMG Petronas F1 Team’ (omitting the ‘Mercedes’) – is there a reason? Is the team being rebranded perhaps?

Many thanks, James


German Samurai

I’m trying to think if this was Webber and Vettel here. Webber set the slightly faster time at the start of Q3, then locked his brakes and went into the run off at Miribeau.

Would people be insinuating or outright alleging that Webber is a cheat?

Is this comment too controversial to be posted? Have I upset the apple cart? Sorry about that, but it seems like a clear Brit vs German bias by the media again.

Schnell! schnell!

Has anyone mentioned the war yet?

As Murray used to say, this is F1, anything can and probably will happen!


hamilton is only acting to create the sense of tension between him and rosberg for viewing figures only. they have known each other for long enough to understand what actually happened.

let the race start and end cleanly.

kenneth chapman

he really is acting like a complete goose. he should just suck it up and get on with the job of winning the race.

i have absolutely no sympathy for people like him. to make matters even more childish, to threaten to drive rosberg off the track is to invite further derision.

disappointments…we all have them from time to time but we don’t all act like a big girl’s blouse.


I hope rosberg wins just for hamilton to demonstrate for the rest of the season just why he is the best driver to have stepped foot in the sport.

kenneth chapman

@ aveli…. you’re dreaming.


you will realise in 6 days that i’m not dreaming.


Hi James,

Could you please make your posts in a different colour to the rest in the comments part of the page. Would makke it much easier to skip all the blatent one sided comments at let us read things that may show us things we dont get to see from the other side of the fence.

Torchwood Five

In the meantime, Ad, you could use your browser’s equivalent of IE’s [Edit] and [Find] to find James’ name.

I have to search for “torc” to find my posts, because of where they end up after moderation, even when I’m the first to visibly comment.



Said yesterday Rosberg would get desperate. But fair play to the man he pushed out his jaw and said ‘yeah, so what’ without any attempt at apology. So to speak throwing down the gauntlet.

Hamiltons body language said it all, but he has been here before with Alonso and Button.

It’ll be interesting to see what happens if Hamilton trys to pass Rosberg on track.

This should push those dwindling viewing figures up a notch sky and Bernie must be watering at the mouth.

Wonder if Rosberg will swerve across the track at the start to protect his position – I also wonder if he’ll go soft soft hard, this being the default strategy of the Mercs leading car. With Hamilton on the faster tyre by race end.

If Hamilton does win what will this do to intra team harmony and will it be more damaging than if Rosberg wins.

This season is already making up for the past 4yrs.


Rosberg’s been playing it fairly cool, but I think if Hamilton beats him from second place on his home turf you’ll start to see him sweat a bit.


Can wait to see the Mercedes carnage after the first corner. It will be an exciting start.


Does Lewis bottom lip count as moveable aero?

Torchwood Five

Lewis fan here, but that was funny. 🙂


or do we need to attach a 10mm wood plank to it?


Ha ha.


Not so long as it’s passed the FIA’s flexi-tests 😉


Please change the commentary function.

It is very awkward. It says “154 comments” or so, but you see ‘comment no.50’ or so.

I read the comments in the afternoon and now there are 20 or 30 new comments, but I can’t see which comment is new, so I have to read all again?!

It is really annoying.


So – if I understand you correctly – if there’s fifty main comments initially and then twenty or thirty new replies are added you still want it to say there are fifty comments?

How will you know that there are new replies in the first place?


I love F1 but it just shows how much it’s lacking on a sporting front when at almost every race, we’re looking for controversy. It’s more soap opera than sport…at least, that’s how it’s portrayed.


Yeah, but to get that real soap opera feel they’re going to have to practice that classic soap opera shot where on character stands close to the camera looking past it intently while the other one stands in background, preferably so they can only just be seen over the first one’s shoulder.


It always has been a soap opera hence the extensive access to all areas afforded to fans – no other sport like it.


Lights out, lewis tries to over take and crashes into Nico. Dani wins. Lewis still leads. Simples!


it’s not in hamilton to do that. he knows rosberg well enough to know that he didn’t do it on purpose. hamilton wants to build the picture of intense rivalry between while there isn’t one at all.


It’s highly suspect, I think it was deliberate. Now either the initial mistake and reversing was deliberate, or he made a mistake and decided to, well, cheat and reversed. It’s pretty embarrassing tbh, for Rosberg and the Stewards.

It’s a bad precedent to potentially start here. Because if I was RB, I know what I would do.


No fan off both drivers but i hope if they dont crash in the first corner, rosberg will lead. Not because i like rosberg more but i reckon Hamilton is just a quicker driver. When hamilton will be behind rosberg in the race fireworks will bound to happen because lewis is just plain quicker and fueled by today is a lethal mix.

About the incident looking at some replays again i just dont see it as a mistake. For me its deliberate.. but i hope im wrong on this one!


Whatever the truth of the matter Rosberg is joining the list of driver’s who try to win off the track.

German Samurai

If Rosberg had of left his car parked in that run off for the final 90 seconds of qualifying, the corner would have been under double yellows meaning no-one would be able to improve their time in that sector. So Hamilton wouldn’t have got pole if Rosberg sat in the run off any way.

Is he supposed to just sit there for 90 seconds letting his car over heat?

Tough luck. Sometimes cars go off, yellows come out, drivers need to rejoin the track.

I really don’t understand what Rosberg was supposed to do other than reverse out. That you might be affected by a yellow flag is simply the nature of Monaco.


The celebration out of the car was a bad play by ROS, and that certainly must have charge up HAM – a shrug then pat on the back would be more befitting a class act. I really wanted to see lewis laughing it off, scoffing or taking a jab at it to the press(maybe when the adreniline dies off) – i truly hope it didnt rattle him into desperation or bumpercar tactics, which will only bring him down to the ‘suspected’ level of what ROS did. It will be very hard to question ROS’s character if HAM shunts him turn 1, in fact i’d say it will do the opposite


Time for Hamilton to collide with Rosberg. As lauda said about their colliding course. Hamilton is nervous like foxterrier when he is not first. But there is not much room on that track. Savety car, lottery with pit stops. Strategy vs. racing. Let’s see tomorrow.


Well, this is a bitter pole to swallow… Let’s give ROS th benefit of the doubt and let’s all slam hamilton for being spoilt, arrogant, unsettled etc… But reversing on track? – even maldonado hasn’t pulled a move like this on track. Thn th fist pumping celebrations? Rosberg simply lacked any sense of class today irrespective of anything else… Reminds me abit of maldonado’s shunt on hamilton at spa a few years back.


Rosberg knew he was 0.148 down in S1, no chance to improve on his time…he had nothing to loose

kenneth chapman

yes, nothing ‘too loose’?


UK SkyF1 coverage was joke today!

Herbert kept on saying Nico deliberately did it without saying how! they kept mentioning it for no reason. And then they interviewed Flavio if he thought it was a deliberate move, for gods sake out of all the people they asked that to him!

They didn’t show post-qualy interviews of any other drivers because they were too busy blaming Nico. After that, Ted says everyone in the paddock thinks Nico did it deliberately.

Worst coverage of this season!


and what did flavio say?

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