This weekend Formula 1 comes to its symbolic home — Monaco.
Monaco is the most polarizing track of the season — some hate it, others love it, but no one is on the fence about it.
Many drivers revere it as the most historic Grand Prix of the year. The legends have accumulated many victories there: Senna, Schumacher and Hill have all displayed their dominance at Monaco.
Some. however, complain it has become too dangerous and refuse to get emotionally attached to it. “Driving at Monaco means nothing to me, I don’t feel anything about the history,” said Vitaly Petrov. Yet one driver that could share Petrov’s opinion after a horrific crash during last year’s Monaco Grand Prix, Sergio Perez has another opinion. “This Grand Prix is the most special one for me. I have been waiting to race in the Monaco GP all my life and, of course, after what happened last year I am looking forward to it even more.”
No matter what your opinion is about Monaco it will be an exciting weekend. So far in five F1 season races we have had five different winners from five different teams.
Spectators are equally divided in opinion about this Grand Prix. Some say it is too boring; indeed it has the least amount of passing out of any of the races of the year.
But saying Monaco is boring takes it out of context. Sure it may not be too exciting to watch on the television, but in person there are few tracks that let you get as close to the racing as Monaco.
Equally exciting are the racing events that take place in the days leading up to the Formula 1 Grand Prix. You get 3 other race car series on the track: GP2, Formula Renault 3.5, and Porsche Supercup.
Circuit of the Americas would do well to look into adopting a similar schedule to attract as many out of town visitors as possible. Having the extra divisions means there is hardly a dull moment between Thursday and Sunday.
Anyone who has either watched the onboard cameras, or raced the track virtually on a simulator or in a video game can attest to the track’s technicalities. It has legendary corners that are unmatched, it is extremely narrow, and the elevation changes all come together to make Monaco one of, if not the most demanding track in the world. It is considered one of the three Triple Crown events in motor sports along with the Indy 500, and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Additionally Monaco is arguably the pinnacle of the glitz and glamour that is Formula 1, being down the highway/coast depending on your preferred form of Mediterranean travel, from Cannes. Just following the film festival, there are few other Grand Prix races that attract as many celebrities as Monaco does.
The Grand Prix is hosted by the royal family of Monaco and as such along with the celebrities, much of Europe’s high society also gravitates towards this event. Many of these A-listers choose to come with their yacht from which they watch the racing, as the cars race along the harbor. This creates a rather impressive backdrop to the race as the harbor is lined with the world’s biggest and most beautiful yachts.
No matter what your opinion is about Monaco it will be an exciting weekend. So far in five F1 season races we have had five different winners from five different teams. There will be seven past Monaco Grand Prix winners on the grid, which makes it nearly impossible to tell for sure who will come out on top.
None of the cars show a dominant advantage coming into this Grand Prix. With six previous world champions wanting to show that they are still contenders for the title, along with many eager podium holders wanting to clinch their first title in a season which will reward consistency, and Pirelli tires that Schumacher describes as driving on “raw eggs” we are sure to see an exciting weekend from the first practice session until the chequered flag drops.