Monaco GP 1972
MAY 14, 1972
Monaco GP, 1972
The F1 field was much as it had been at Jarama a fortnight earlier (where Emerson Fittipaldi had won for Lotus). Mario Andretti was missing from the Ferrari lineup being busy at Indianapolis and Carlos Reutemann was still out of action because of his broken ankle and so Wilson Fittipaldi was again in action from Brabham. Peter Revson was also busy at Indy and so Brian Redman was in the second McLaren.
There had been changes to the Monaco circuit with the pits moving to the waterfront by the chicane and the track going straight down from the tunnel to a new chicane nearer Tabac. Under pressure from the teams the Automobile Club of Monaco agreed that 25 cars could start.
Emerson Fittipaldi (Lotus) took pole from Jacky Ickx (Ferrari). The second row featured Clay Regazzoni (Ferrari) and Jean-Pierre Beltoise (BRM) and Peter Gethin (BRM and Chris Amon (Matra) shared row three. Completing the top 10 were Denny Hulme (McLaren), Jackie Stewart (Tyrrell), Henri Pescarolo (in a Williams March) and Redman.
It rained throughout Saturday and on Sunday morning the weather was still bad. At the start Beltoise made a great start to grab the lead from Regazzoni while the front row men were third and fourth. Then came Ickx, Stewart and the rest.
The conditions were terrible and so the leader had a big advantage and he was able to pull away quickly. On the fifth lap he was helped when Regazzoni went up the escape road at the chicane, taking Fittipaldi and Ickx with him. By the time they were all back on track Ickx was ahead of Regazzoni and Fittipaldi. Beltoise was having the race of his life and even Ickx could not make any impression. Further back a lot of drivers made mistakes and hit the barriers but Beltoise kept going to win his first (and only) Grand Prix victory. Ickx finished second while Regazzoni fell behind Stewart (who had worked his way past Amon and Fittipaldi) in the mid-race. The Tyrrell driver then spun and so Regazzoni went back ahead. The Swiss driver then spun on some oil and hit the barriers and so Stewart held third, despite a misfire, until the closing laps when Fittipaldi overtook him to take the final place on the podium. Redman finished fifth after working his way up through the field.