monaco grand prix 2023

Monaco Grand Prix: Verstappen reigns in the rain

Among the exhilarating races on the F1 calendar, the Monaco Grand Prix stands tall as a true spectacle. Set against the backdrop of Monte Carlo's iconic streets, this race offers a unique blend of tight turns, elevation changes, and unforgiving margins for error. Recently, the Monaco Grand Prix showcased its unwavering ability to captivate fans and drivers alike with a thrilling battle between the best in the sport. From intense qualifying sessions to unexpected twists and turns, the race unfolded with excitement at every corner. Join us as we dive into the gripping highlights or intense qualifying sessions to unexpected twists and turns of the 2023 Monaco Grand Prix.


The Monaco Grand Prix in 2023 delivers the goods

The Monaco Grand Prix can be one of the most thrilling and exciting Formula One races on the F1 calendar. Held on the iconic streets of Monte Carlo, this race has long been a favourite among F1 fans due to its unique combination of tight turns, elevation changes, and razor-thin margins for error, which can quickly make it a very interesting race, and it did just that in 2023.


A tight tussle in qualifying

This weekend, the action started early with Q3 going down to the wire. First, Alonso, then Verstappen—the crowd cheered as one of them knocked the other off the top spot for the fastest lap of qualifying. Ultimately, it was Verstappen who ended up on top, beating Alonso by a mere 0.084s, pushing the Spaniard to second place, ahead of Leclerc, Ocon, Sainz, Hamilton, Pierre Gasly (Alpine), George Russell (Mercedes), Tsunoda, and Norris.

lando norris


A superb start for Verstappen

Max Verstappen, who started on the red-walled medium tires, held his pole position advantage ahead of Alonso into the first corner, and a little further back, Carlos Sainz of Ferrari just managed to hold off Lewis Hamilton. Sergio Perez didn't make any progress at the start after starting at the back of the grid due to his qualifying crash, and he pitted for hard tires at the end of the first lap.

On lap 11, Sainz attacked Ocon at the Nouvelle Chicane, misjudging the gap and hitting the back of the Alpine, causing damage to the left-side front wing endplate. The endplate fell off a few corners later at Beau Rivage into the path of Hamilton and his Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc.

Verstappen dominated at the front of the pack and generated a lead of over 10 seconds to Fernando Alonso by the 25th lap of the circuit, with Ocon hanging on to third place just over 17 seconds further back. Even further back, Sergio Perez hit the Aston Martin of Lance Stroll and then clashed with the Haas of Kevin Magnussen a few laps later at the same spot on the Nouvelle Chicane, breaking his front wing and forcing him to pit yet again.

max & lewis

Verstappen's lead fell to 7 seconds after being caught in traffic but gave his teammate Sergio Perez a tow to get past the Aston Martin of Lance Stroll.


Inclement weather presents a curveball

Meanwhile, during all the action, the threat of rain was looming, and it was looking ever more likely that there was about to be a shake-up. Just before the rain started, Leclerc pitted from third place, shortly after Lance Stroll and Valtteri Bottas in the Alfa Romeo made the call to change to intermediate tires.

In a shocking move, Alonso then pitted for mediums, just as Ocon, who was behind him in the order, stopped for intermediates as the rain spread right across the circuit. As the rain got worse, Sainz spun into the run-off at a drenched Mirabeau, dropping him behind Leclerc.


And the winner of the Monaco Grand Prix is...

Max Verstappen clipped the wall at Portier and decided to make his sole pitstop for intermediates on the 55th lap. Alonso pitted for a second time for inters at a similar time as he watched his chance of victory slip away just a little further. With the rain now in full force, Ferrari double-stacked their cars to pit for inters, while Magnussen tried to brave it on slicks but hit the wall at Rascasse, making it almost all the way around the track without incident before pitting for full wet tires. Verstappen led Alonso by 22s after the pitstops were complete and the order remained Ocon, Hamilton, Russell, Leclerc, Gasly and then Sainz. Russell was given a 5s penalty for rejoining in an unsafe manner after he went off the track to the escape road at Mirabeau and hit Perez as he rejoined the circuit.

Verstappen dominated the entire race easily driving to victory, ahead of Alonso, Ocon, Hamilton and Russell, who managed the gap between himself and Leclerc to serve his penalty after the race and maintain position.


READ MORE: 2024 Formula 1 calendar