|6||2||888||Red Bull||+1 lap||38||01:12.557||4||8|
|DNF||17||Packet||Force India||+39 laps||0||01:14.587||11||0|
"Well that was certainly a hell of a race back for me. First ever GP1 podium, and at Monaco too, which I am slowly beginning to love as a circuit.
Had a torrid time during qualifying. Knew I could break into the 1:11's but I fell short by quite a margin, which left me a few places further down than what I wanted. I couldn't shake off the feeling I did my best laps without upping my fuel mix, which frustrated me a tad as that's quite the rookie error if that was the case. To boot, I had done two flying laps on my set of options to little gain, when I knew that one extra lap could have been decisive in my strategy.
So I started from 8th and I knew I had a lot of work ahead. Started decently but got caught up a little in ToF's spin in turn 1, which cost me a little but didn't lose me any places. I had decided that prioritising track position would be key to strategy around a circuit like Monaco, so I aimed for a 2 stop strategy, with my final set of tyres to be determined by tyre life.
I ended up being stuck behind Oz for most of the first stint, and I only managed to pass him through the first pitstop, which probably was crucial to my race. Sili was on a 3 stopper, so I wasn't really sure of his position in relation to me until the final stint, and I knew Preyst would challenge as the race went on. So after Oz got his penalty I focused on churning out some consistent laps and avoiding any damage to my front wing to cut a few seconds from my next stop, which I very nearly did in my 2nd stint until my primes gave way a few laps earlier than I thought and I ended up losing a front wing endfence to the swimming pool chicane.
So my aim of doing the last 11-12 laps on options was changed to a 15 lap final stint on the primes. My consistency during the middle stint allowed me to keep track position to Sili and Preyst, but my primes were older than Sili's, and Preyst had options fitted. So yeah, as Flouncy's video showed, I had my work cut out for me to keep 3rd place, but track position at Monaco helps immensely.
I did end up dropping behind both at one point after getting the turn before the swimming pool completely wrong under pressure from Preyst, but the next lap he understeered into a wall and lost a front wing and Sili unluckily got caught up in it and the game gave him a penalty for it, which allowed me easy passage to 3rd place. Dazza was within reaching distance at this point after his penalties, but the Safety Car put end to that plan.
Funnily enough, even after the SC was out the chaos wasn't over, as I had to pull a crazy move up the hill to avoid hitting the SC on the penultimate lap (which would have disqualified me), and I ended up completely losing my front wing on the very same lap. I decided to stay out without the wing and cruise home though as everyone was stuck behind the SC at that point, so I had nothing to lose.
So yeah, pretty chuffed with that considering my quali result.
Oh and seriously, I hope you got that quali lap on video Schmeval, because a 1:10.1 is an astonishing lap. That's a top 20ish time trial time you've pulled off in online quali. Crazy." - NightFire - Ferrari
"Managed to jump a ghosted Riley into T1 and held onto the back of Schmeval for a while with the goal keeping reasonably close throughout the race. Things already started coming undone with errors popping up everywhere.
In lap for first stop I binned it just near the pit entrance and lost my wing and punctured a tyre losing a handful of time to Schmeve. First prime stint was just as messy as the first Option run. Final stop, was evident gap was going to be 30+ sec so I tried settling in until lap 30 I got a drive through for locking up and just cutting the first bit of the chicane out of the tunnel. This wasn't a lockup that sent me straight across I actually made the the 2nd bit of that chicane within track limits. Hardly any corner cut warnings prior, this was really upsetting but I had a reasonable amount of time up my sleeve so it wasn't a disaster until I got out of shape that same lap at the Swimming Pool and knocked the bollard over and got ANOTHER drive through. FFS podium over.
No idea how I was still 2nd after 2x drive through penalties. Next 2 laps I break both endplates and my tyres are ready to fall off the cliff. Then Safety Car!!! What a lifeline, cruised home in lean." - DaZzA - Mercedes
"Great race for Ferrari which could have been better but that's life.
I had a poor qualifying session, the physics felt totally different to offline and I just couldn't put a good lap together. Finally on my 3rd and last stint I managed a low 1:12 which got me up to 7th.
I then pushed again for a 2nd lap on the same tyres as qualifying position is more important than tyres on this track. I was purple but unfortunately got caught up in traffic which ended that.
My race start was a total disaster. I got a good start off the line and into turn 1 but on exit Tof looked like he lost control and cut straight across my nose pushing me into the wall? But with Codemasters who knows what actually happened? When he started coming across I tried to stop but the car just kept going so it might have been the famous bubble? Sorry Tof, I hope it wasn't my fault?
After that I was 2nd last in front of Tof and racing hard to catch up to the rest. My strategy at this point was catch them and then pit to get clear track and undercut, so I pushed until about lap 7 and then changed to primes. This was a good call as I managed to get up into 5th during time.
This changed me to a 3 stopper which I think was the best strategy in the end. On my 2nd stint I pretty much had a clear run except for Preyst who was all over the back of me and I decided to let him go to maximise my overall pace. If I knew by the end he would be racing Nightfire and myself for 3rd I would have held him up for as long as possible.
Then on the last stint I changed to primes again to keep my tyres as fresh as possible and this was when things got really interesting. Nightfire was ahead on older primes, Preyst was next on options and then I was behind on primes. We had a great fight for at least 6 laps, Preyst finally managed to get past Nightfire allowing me to also get up the side of him, then on the next corner Preyst ran wide allowing me to make the pass but unfortunately he collected the wall and bounced back onto me resulting in a 20 second penalty which lost me a few positions due to the safety car compressing the field.
Great race by all especially Schmeevs and Dazza who made the rest of us look like amateurs.
Also congratulations to my team mate Nightfire. It wasn't just a good result, you managed to with stand some immense pressure from both Preyst and I to hold on. Race performance of the year if you ask me." - Silcint - Ferrari