Verstappen Dominates Rain-Soaked Monaco Grand Prix, Extends Championship Lead

May 29, 2023 11:57 am

Max Verstappen, the double world champion, showcased his prowess at the rain-soaked Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday, leading from start to finish and extending his Formula One championship lead by 39 points. This victory marked Red Bull’s sixth consecutive win this season.

After a largely uneventful 51 laps under dry conditions, the race took an exhilarating turn with a downpour, injecting excitement into the proceedings. Fernando Alonso of Aston Martin secured second place but trailed a considerable 27.9 seconds behind Verstappen at the checkered flag. Esteban Ocon of Alpine claimed the final spot on the podium, granting the Renault-owned team their first podium finish of the season. Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes secured fourth place while also earning a bonus point for the fastest lap. Follow your favourite F1 team with attractive betting odds from Nextbet.

Reflecting on the challenging race, Verstappen stated, “That was a real Monaco. It was incredibly slippery, and when you are that far in the lead, you don’t want to push too hard but also don’t want to lose too much time, so it’s quite difficult in that scenario. I clipped the wall a few times, and it was super difficult out there. But that’s Monaco.”

This triumph marked Verstappen’s fourth win of the season, second in Monaco, and his 39th career victory. His teammate, Sergio Perez, who started at the back of the grid due to a qualifying crash, finished 16th, two laps behind.

The remaining top finishers included George Russell of Mercedes in fifth place and local favorite Charles Leclerc securing sixth place for Ferrari. Alpine’s Pierre Gasly, Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, McLaren’s Lando Norris, and Norris’ teammate Oscar Piastri completed the points positions.

As rain descended upon the track, drivers grappled with treacherous conditions, sliding perilously close to barriers. Pit stops for intermediate and full wet tires became essential. Verstappen strategically delayed his pit stop to coincide with the rain, while Alonso initially opted for medium tires before returning for intermediates, missing a potential opportunity to seize the lead.

Alonso expressed his thoughts on the challenging race, stating, “We thought to play a long game with the strategy, but Max drove super well on the medium tires and extended that first stint. We didn’t have any chance, and then at the end, the rain put things a bit complicated out there. It was not easy, and I was surprised there were no safety cars from incidents. I think everyone was doing an amazing job today to keep the cars on track.”

Alonso celebrated his fifth podium finish of the season, securing his best result so far for Aston Martin. However, his teammate Lance Stroll retired from the race after multiple collisions with rivals.

The only other non-finisher was Kevin Magnussen of Haas, while his teammate Nico Hulkenberg finished 17th in the team’s 150th race. Hulkenberg incurred a five-second penalty for causing a collision with Williams’ Logan Sargeant. Notably, Sargeant showcased overtaking maneuvers on the glamorous street circuit, allowing several drivers to pass him throughout the race.

Perez faced a challenging race, opting for hard tires on lap one and completing five pit stops, leading to a nightmarish performance. He was lapped by Verstappen well before the halfway point of the race. Get all the latest updates from the world of F1 only on Nextbet Sports.