Monaco GP 2016
MAY 29, 2016
Sunday Team Quotes
Lewis Hamilton (1st): "This might be the best place ever to have win number 44 - it's been eight years since I won here! What a special day... truly one of the hardest races I can ever remember having. To stay in the zone, not make any mistakes and come out on top is just unbelievable. I walk along here every day and think about the greats who have won this race - the likes of Fangio, Moss, Hill and Senna - and it's a truly amazing feeling to have my name added to that list again. It's very unusual that I'm able to take any credit for a strategy decision - but when the team first asked me to box, I could see the track drying and my tyres still felt pretty good. So I told them all that and they said to stay out, which worked out great. I just carried on looking after the tyres - picking up the pace a bit when I saw what times people were starting to do on the intermediates as it dried out. I was matching their times at that stage so I thought "I could actually hold onto this until it's dry". Staying in that window was really tricky, though, as the first two sectors were almost dry. When I came out on the slicks it was like driving on ice. It was tough knowing how hard to push and we came out very close together. If he hadn't had a bad stop I wouldn't have been ahead. But these things happen for a reason - and today the reason was that 44th win."
Nico Rosberg (7th): "In racing you have good days and bad days. Today was a bad day for me. I didn't have the pace to fight for the win and we need to understand why. It was possibly a brake issue - but I don't know for sure yet. I didn't feel like I could push to the limit at the beginning of the race on the wet tyres. It was a simple decision to accept the request from the team to let Lewis past - even if it hurt very much in that moment. I was very far off the pace and Lewis quite clearly had the speed to win for the team. We've always had that rule - if you're ahead and the other guy has a chance to win, you give him that chance. From there it just didn't go my way. I had a tricky pit stop and was held in the box because there was traffic in pit lane. So the cars were just streaming by and suddenly I was down to sixth. Once you're behind in Monaco that's it - you're stuck. At the end, Nico [Hulkenberg] had a lot more rubber left on his Soft tyres and my UltraSofts were finished, so I lost temperature in the drizzle and lost grip, which let him past too. That kind of summed it up, really. I'm massively disappointed with today - I really wanted to win my home race again but it didn't work out. It's been tough and I'll probably need a day to take it all in - but then I'll shift my focus to Canada and a chance to come back stronger."
Paddy Lowe: "We woke up this morning to rain, as predicted. Not having pole position, this was a welcome opportunity to find a way to win the race. As it panned out, we started under the safety car which lost us one opportunity. And then, once the race did get underway, it soon became clear from Nico's pace that he had a problem. We're still trying to analyse what that was - but the initial signs are that it was related to brake temperatures. It came to the point where we told Nico he would either need to pick up the pace or let Lewis past. One lap later, he hadn't managed to find that extra pace, so we asked him to move aside - which he did immediately. Great credit to Nico for his team ethic and playing for the overall team result. Unfortunately, his pace didn't recover all afternoon - to the point where he even lost sixth place at the final corner as light rain began to fall once more. We need to look into why that was. Once Lewis was past, he instantly began to stretch away from Nico with pace that was on a par with the leader. Once Daniel pitted for Intermediates, we had a very interesting situation where Lewis was in the lead and we had nothing to lose strategically - thanks to the buffer he had built over Nico in third. We gambled on stringing out the stint until the track was sufficiently dry to change to slicks. Fortunately, the wet tyre clung on at a reasonable pace until we made the switch to the UltraSoft and the rest is history! A fantastic job from Lewis to maintain the lead in difficult circumstances with changing conditions, traffic, VSC incidents and all sorts - and credit again to Nico for the way he handled a tough situation. A word finally to the strategy team - who did a fantastic job today with a bold but brilliant call for Lewis which played a huge role in the win."
Toto Wolff, Technical Director: "What an incredible drive from Lewis: he didn't put a foot wrong, we took some risks together as a team and lady luck smiled on us as well. It was an amazing race and just what the doctor ordered after everything we have been through together in recent weeks. But I feel really bad for Nico, too; he endured a messy race in a car that didn't have the pace today, a delayed second pit stop that cost him track position and then found himself stuck behind Alonso for the rest of the race. It was like all his bad luck came on one day and the result was P7. In the first stint we told him to let Lewis pass, as that was our best chance of winning the race at that time. The fact that he did so was the gesture of a great team player. But we don't leave Monaco feeling in any way complacent: Red Bull had the performance this weekend and Montreal and Baku will present some very different challenges for us to tackle. So we need to keep pushing on performance and keep chasing the root causes of the problems we have experienced. For this evening, though, we can also savour a special win for Lewis who was at his very best today."
Sebastian Vettel (4th): "It was a difficult race, I think I could have done better when I stopped and I came out behind Felipe. We made the right strategy call but then I should have found the way to get past, I think I lost the podium there. When I was behind him I was in the Intermediates tires, it was very slippery, very easy to get it wrong, but I feel I should have made it possible. Yesterday we didn't do a good job in not putting the car in the place where we belong, yet I think we were very quick this weekend, the pit-stops were fantastic, a great job from the guys. But the rest is up to me and I apologize because I couldn't get to the podium. I tried everything to close the gap to Perez, and I did come very close a couple of times, I was also lucky not to 'kiss' the wall at the end. Now it's over, so in the end we got good points and after 6 races there's a lot more to come."
Kimi Raikkonen (Damage): "Today it was very difficult to get any grip in wet conditions, I was trying to drive as fast as I could but I was very slow. At one point, trying to downshift, I locked the rear a little bit, went straight and then I just couldn't turn around at the hairpin. Unfortunately I touched the wall, took the front wing out and it got stuck underneath the car. After that I struggled to go forward and in the end I managed to get the car moving. When the team told me to park the car I was in the middle of the tunnel and couldn't stop there, so I went through very slowly and then I parked the car. It has been a difficult weekend with a bad end result for me, now we keep working and improving, certainly we can do better next race."
Maurizio Arrivabene, Team Principal: "Today it was a very tricky race, and the outcome was partly compromised by our qualifying performance. An aggressive race strategy, with an early call for intermediate tires, was the only option we could take to gain positions, and it's no use to complain about other drivers who hampered us on the track. If we had qualified better, the result would also had been better. Our car had a very good race pace but that's not enough, as we must make sure that we stay competitive for the whole weekend. We now look forward to the next race in Canada where we don't want to be caught out, as we want to be up to our name. The season is still very long, and it's not in the DNA of Ferrari to surrender. Having said this, we must work hard to cure our weak spots, while improving further on all areas where we are strong already."
Felipe Massa (10th): "It was a very tough day, having to start in the wet with laptimes of 1m40s and upwards. It was looking like a very difficult race to finish, so the positive thing is I managed that. It was definitely the most difficult race weekend of the season so far, but one point is better than zero."
Valtteri Bottas (11th): "It was of course disappointing to finish outside the points. I think we really need to look at our strategy and why we lost a good position after the track was starting to dry. It's possible we stopped at the wrong time, but the conditions were tricky today and it wasn't an easy race."
Rob Smedley, Head of Performance Engineering: "We got a point today. It's not exactly what we want but one is better than none. We want a lot more and we'll try a lot harder to get them. We were quite quick on dry tyres in that midfield pack, and Felipe set the fastest lap on the intermediate tyres, so the pace of the car wasn't as bad as last year, which is a positive. Felipe drove a very clean race and got us a point. We kept him out on the extreme wet tyres and he got out in front of the pack held up behind Werhlein, so his race was pretty much set from there. We pitted Valtteri early for inters to try to release a bit of pace on that tyre. Unfortunately, we had a rear jack failure in the pitstop which cost us because that put him out behind Werhlein. His race was very difficult from then on because he couldn't pass him. We could have got him P7-9 without that. Generally, the race was bittersweet. We've made really good progress around Monaco compared to the last two years, but we haven't been able to convert that into the amount of points we should have done. Looking forward, we're going to Canada, Azerbaijan, Austria and Great Britain - a series of races we can capitalise on. We're still fourth in the championship, and Red Bull didn't score the amount of points they could have. We've got good developments coming, and we won't be giving up the fight this season."
Red Bull-Tag Heuer
Daniel Ricciardo (2nd): "On the extremes in the beginning we were quick and I did everything I had to. I asked a couple of times how the people on inters were doing but they said that my pace was really good on the extremes so we stayed out and that was no problem. And then they said "box this lap". We put the inters on and then we came out behind Lewis. Then when Lewis pitted we tried to pit the lap later to overcut him. It was all prepared and then I came into the pits and there were no tyres. I actually hate being like this. I hate being miserable. I got a podium in Monaco. I should be extremely happy, grateful and thankful. I've been fast now for two races and that's the positive, but again no win so I'm a little bit sick of being fast and not getting any real rewards. I don't like being the sad story. To end it on a positive note, we are fast in all conditions, which is good."
Max Verstappen (Accident): "Disappointed in myself and disappointed for the team, because they worked very hard to get the car ready and I didn't give them the result they deserved today. We were in a good way, we were in the points and to start from the pit lane and end in the points would have been very good, but I learned from this and hopefully we can come back stronger in Canada. It was pretty tricky especially in the beginning of the race it was a very slippery track. It got better and better, the track was drying, and I think from then on we had great pace and I was overtaking cars, charging through the field and everything felt well. Then we put the softs on and I locked up. Unfortunately I went a bit off-line and of course then you arrive in the wet area and I was a passenger from there on. That's racing in the end, it can go up and down very quickly but you shouldn't back off because of this you should keep positive, keep pushing. I learn a lot from those moments as well and I'm already focusing on Canada now and leaving Monaco behind."
Christian Horner, Sporting Director: "A very disappointing day. We as a team owe Daniel a huge apology today as we failed to support him in the way we did to get him to his first pole position yesterday. The delay at his pit stop cost him the lead and despite some excellent driving to get close to Lewis, he couldn't get past, as is so often the case here in Monaco. Max put in some excellent laps to move through the field but unfortunately came unstuck at turn three pushing to improve position. We will review and re-group and all of the team will be aiming to continue our strong form in Canada."
Sergio Perez (3rd): "A podium in Monaco is a very special moment. It's one of my best ever races, especially when you see how difficult the conditions were today: you had to concentrate so hard and it was easy to make a mistake. The key to my race was the strategy and we got things just about perfect today. The first difficult decision was when to fit the intermediate tyre and we delayed this as long as possible. The team said it was my call when to come in and it paid off because we managed to jump a couple of cars, including my teammate. The switch to dry tyres was another key moment because I pitted early, a lap before Rosberg and Vettel, and managed to jump ahead of them. The soft tyres worked really well, but I knew I needed to look after them and it wasn't easy because there was pressure behind from Vettel for most of the race. Everybody in the team deserves this result and I want to dedicate this podium to Vijay Mallya in particular."
Nico Hulkenberg (6th): "It was ultimately a disappointing race for me, despite getting back to scoring points. I feel the timing of our first pit stop was wrong and that cost me track position and put me straight into traffic. This effectively ruined my race, as I spent the rest of the afternoon stuck there. It's very frustrating as I had the pace to be on the podium today, but this is racing and it's just the way it often is in Monaco. I was able to finally get past Rosberg with a good move on the exit of the final corner: we were on worn out tyres, it started to drizzle and it was very tricky to keep the car facing in the right direction. I got a better exit out of the corner and I think I got him by just a car's length. All in all, I still feel it's a huge missed opportunity for me. The car was in the sweet spot, it gave me a lot of confidence and I just had a good feeling today, but it was not to be."
Robert Fernley, Deputy Team Principal: "What a race! It's amazing to be celebrating our fourth podium finish and Sergio's third with the team. It wasn't easy to make the right calls with the strategy, but when given the opportunity to score a special result, Sergio didn't put a single wheel wrong and grabbed it with both hands. To be honest, these decisions can often go the other way and we will review the wet to intermediate call we made with Nico. We opted to make an early stop for the intermediate tyres, but he got stuck behind Massa, which proved very costly for his race. Despite the disappointment for Nico, it's a very special day for the team, one that will live with us for a very long time. It's our best ever result in Monaco and we will celebrate this moment. We have reclaimed fifth in the championship, we showed that the VJM09 is a very competitive package and we got a big confidence boost as we head to a number of tracks that will play to our strengths."
Kevin Magnussen (Damage): "We had a good start to the race and made a really good strategic call to change to the intermediate tyres just after the safety car. We were the only ones to do it so early and it was the right decision. We were in a good position as a lot of people were still to pit and we gained a lot of places. Unfortunately, Kvyat just lost his mind and crashed into me and that was effectively the end of my race. We did continue and made an early change to slicks as we had nothing to lose, but ultimately I hit the wall and damaged the front wing. We were several laps down at that point and the car had been in the wars so it was safer to retire. It's a shame we didn't have a good weekend as we were very optimistic for the race. Now we have to shift our focus to Canada and have a better weekend there. Montreal should be a stronger track for us and should play to the strengths of the updates for the car."
Jolyon Palmer (Accident): "The traction was appalling after the safety car and I got caught out. I had wheelspin in fifth gear on the white line that crosses the track. There was nothing I could do - I was just a passenger and went straight away into the wall. It's so difficult as we know that the white lines are slippery but they are everywhere. I'm disappointed as I love this track and it's been good for me in the past. But I'm now looking forward to Canada and putting this weekend behind me. Monaco hasn't been good to me this year so we need to move on to the next race and look for a better weekend."
Fred Vasseur, Racing Director: "It was a tough weekend for both cars. Jolyon's race ended on the straight as soon as the race got underway. He had a pretty serious shunt, a fast one, and that put an end to his day; there was nothing to be done. For Kevin, he asked to swap to intermediates pretty early in the race which was a good call, despite suffering from being in traffic for a while. His race effectively ended thanks to the incident with Kvyat which is a shame especially as there may have been something to be done from where he was ranked as we had a strategy that was slightly out of step from everyone else's. In any case, we'll go lick our wounds and move our focus to Canada."
Carlos Sainz (8th): "I'm not that happy finishing in P8 if I say the truth, because I felt that today there were some big points on the table for us and we lost the opportunity of making them ours. From my side, I kept the car away from the walls and was fast on all three compounds, so I'm happy with that, but it's disappointing to have lost positions during our pit-stops... We definitely need to analyse why this happened, as we threw away many points because of this. Anyway, P8 means 4 points, which is not that bad - I would've been happy with this if you had told me before coming to Monaco, but after starting from P6 and seeing how chaotic the race was, I'm sure we could've done better. I have to say that this was my first time ever driving in the wet through the streets of Monaco and it's the most difficult thing I've done in my life!"
Daniil Kvyat (Accident): "What a frustrating race! I don't believe in luck but today we were very unlucky... We had what I think was an electrical issue at the start of the race, which meant I was stuck in 60kph for the first couple of laps. We tried to sort it out and all of a sudden the car felt like it was working well again, but by that point we had lost a lot of time and it was very difficult to try and un-lap myself. I tried to go for it, but then the incident with Magnussen happened, where none of us wanted to let each other by... This is racing and unfortunately sometimes things like this happen. It's definitely a missed opportunity, as here in Monaco we had been looking strong all weekend, but all we can do now is to keep on working hard for the next races, starting with Canada in two weeks' time."
Franz Tost, Team Principal: "It's very disappointing to finish Carlos' race only in P8, when we know we have a package which has the performance to be at least within the top five. The main reason for this result was the first pit-stop, during which we lost two seconds and where Perez, Vettel and Hulkenberg passed us. Therefore, Carlos ended up behind this train of cars and couldn't use all the potential of the car, but he did a solid race and showed a really good performance. On Daniil's car we had a problem with the software during the Safety Car period at the start of the race, where he was stuck in pit-limiter mode, driving at only 60kph. Although we changed the steering wheel, this didn't help and he therefore was a lap down when the race was restarted. He then had a collision with another driver and did not finish the race. We all expected much more from this event here in Monaco and we have to be more concentrated in order to prevent mistakes in the upcoming races."
Marcus Ericsson (Accident): "A very disappointing end to the race. We had taken a bit of a gamble, so I was first to pit for slicks. It worked out, but it was not ideal as I was caught out by blue flags. I had to go off the line and let other drivers pass, which meant I struggeled to get the temperatures up in my tyres. When the tyres started to work, I caught Felipe, but got stuck behind him. I was told that Felipe received a call via the radio. Then I saw a gap and tried to overtake him, but we all saw what then happened. It is a difficult situation for us, and it is even more important to stick together as a team in these times. I apologise, and I am sure that this will not happen again in the future."
Felipe Nasr (Accident): "It is a shame that neither of us finished the race. It is the worst scenario that can happen for us as a team. Marcus and I were on different strategies, so his second pit stop was earlier than mine. My tyres started to get up to temperature, and I was catching the cars in front. For me it was not the right timing to swap positions. Suddenly, in Rascasse I felt my car being hit. It is surely disappointing for everyone as the whole team works very hard. I apologise for what happened. We need to make sure that this will never happen again."
Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal: "It was unacceptable behaviour by both drivers. Today the work of the whole team ended in a collusion. Marcus and Felipe both know how much work is put into every race weekend. They have the responsibility to make it to the end of the race. After evaluating the overall situation, it was important to bring the fastest car as far as possible to the front, so that we were able to used any chances. Our decision was based on the data from both cars. After this, we have clarified the situation internally and both drivers are aware of their responsibilities. Such an incident will not happen again. I also want to say a word to our previous driver Sergio Perez and Force India: Congratulations on the third place in Monaco."
Fernando Alonso (5th): "In terms of driving and concentration, today's was an extremely tough race. We started behind the Safety Car - with almost zero visibility - then switched to Inters; but nobody had done any laps on those tyres before the race, so it was unknown territory for everyone. Once we'd switched to dry-weather tyres, there was still only a very narrow dry line on the track, so if you went just half a centimetre off that line, you'd crash. There was just no room for mistakes today. Nonetheless, we got a good result - both cars in the points ought to make us reasonably happy. I think we're progressing well: the results make it quite obvious what we're achieving, so we're heading in the right direction. We're still not where we want to be - right at the front, fighting for wins and podiums - but I'm happy about how things are going."
Jenson Button (9th): "My car felt almost undriveable during the wet opening laps - we were struggling to get heat into the rear tyres, and were locking the rear wheels whenever we hit the brakes, which was a bit scary. I boxed for Inters at probably the right time - that first-call was the trickier one. I feel I'm pretty good at making those tyre calls, but, on such a short lap, and when everybody else follows suit, it didn't make too much difference. Then I got stuck behind Pascal's [Wehrlein] Manor, which I couldn't overtake. I think we made the right calls in terms of strategy, but lost out a little with the attendant traffic - which I couldn't help - but the team made some good calls nonetheless. We wouldn't have scored this many points if it'd been dry, so it's good to get a decent haul today."
Eric Boullier, Racing Director: "As in Sochi four weeks ago, both McLaren-Hondas finished in the points here in Monaco today - and, although that isn't much to write home about when you reflect that McLaren has won the Monaco Grand Prix a record 15 times in its illustrious 50-year Formula 1 history, it's encouraging nonetheless. Moreover, despite the fact that conditions today were tricky in the extreme, causing the race to be peppered by accidents on the treacherous wet-dry asphalt, both Fernando and Jenson showed their great expertise and experience, stroking their way to the finish over two flawless hours while all around them drivers of less sheer class were scraping their way along the Armco at almost every turn. So, although we arrived in the Principality with hopes of being slightly more competitive here than in the end we were, we're pleased that today we saw more evidence of the solid developmental progress we're making, the result of the massive amount of hard work that's taking place in both the UK and Japan at the moment. In two weeks' time we'll be racing on another iconic and unique racetrack, the challenging Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, and it goes without saying that we'll be hoping to continue our points-scoring form there."
Yusuke Hasegawa, Honda: "With Fernando finishing fifth and Jenson ninth, it was a great end result to a difficult weekend and a chaotic race. The race conditions were ever-changing from a wet start to dry conditions, but the engineers made all the right calls with tyre choices and the skills of our highly experienced drivers shone through during the race. From a power unit perspective, we had consistent performance without any glitches or issues throughout the weekend, so it is also great for Honda to be able to show and confirm our reliability out on track."
Pascal Wehrlein (14th): "Today was quite tough to be honest. Early on in the race, with the track staying quite wet, we decided to stay out on the extreme tyre and run longer. With other cars pitting earlier onto the Inters, we had track position and when we did stop we actually managed to jump some cars. So that strategy worked perfectly. We were able to keep the Haas behind until the chequered flag but with the penalties the race got away from us and we dropped behind. It's disappointing, but going into the race 14th might have looked like a good result. It's been a challenging weekend but also very exciting to be racing in Monaco for the first time and disappointments aside I have really enjoyed the experience."
Rio Haryanto (15th): "A difficult race today. Obviously the first part was quite tricky for everyone with the wet conditions but actually when the race got underway I was able to keep pace; the first two stints were okay for me. Then, towards the end, there was a lot of traffic and under the blue flags I was struggling to keep temperature in the tyres, so I was losing lap time. Although it's been a tough day, it has also been a real privilege to race in my first Monaco Grand Prix. Now we look forward to Canada, which is a track that should suit us better."
Dave Ryan, Racing Director: "At the end of a weekend that has seen so many incidents up and down the field, on the face of it two cars home in 14th and 15th position is not a bad result. It was quite a tough race for us with the wet start and typical Monaco traffic challenges making it very difficult to maintain the momentum that we started the race with. Both drivers did a good job in their debut here and though you always hope that some of the attrition can lead to a better result, they did manage to keep their noses clean and take the chequered flag. So, we look forward to Canada now; a different kind of challenge and one that we hope may play to our advantage slightly more."
Esteban Gutierrez (12th): "It was a pretty difficult race. I've mixed feelings, as the first part was very good. We had a really great pace in the wet. However, when we changed to the ultrasoft, I was struggling to get the confidence from the car. It started to be a bit difficult and in Monte Carlo, when you don't have the confidence, it pulls you back quite a lot. Overall, I think there are a lot of things we can learn as a team to try and find more consistency and understand the tires better, which was the main focus from today."
Romain Grosjean (13th): "Kimi (Raikkonen) pushed me into the barrier. I had to reverse and that was it. I lost my position and that was the end of my race. It was hard to keep going behind the Manor car. There was only one dry line and it was impossible to overtake. I did something like 60 laps behind the same car and tried everything I could. The good news is that the chassis worked well and we made a good setup. I was in front of Massa before the incident, so I think we could've scored points, which would've been amazing starting where we did."
Guenther Steiner, Team Principal: "It was a challenging race. A lot of things happening on track today but, unfortunately, not a lot helped us. We started off with Romain not being able to get passed Kimi's damaged car, losing positions and then coming into a pit stop which wasn't perfect. He was then so far behind. It's very difficult here to get back to where you want to be. Esteban was very quick on the wets, but when we moved to the dry tires we lost position by position. Not a very successful weekend, but we will for sure get up again and try to do better in Canada."