Motoring Weekly

Onwards and upwards

May 31 - June 6, 2023
Gulf Weekly Onwards and upwards
Gulf Weekly Onwards and upwards

Mercedes may not have secured victory in the 2023 Monaco Grand Prix but it has left AMG Petronas’ team principal hopeful of their future this season.

Lewis Hamilton had secured fourth place and George Russell came in fifth resulting in a double points finish for the team during the dramatic afternoon and closing the gap on second-placed Aston Martin in the Constructors’ Championship to a single point.

“This was a solid result and good points for the team after a race where it would have been easy to make mistakes or move backwards through the field,” said the team’s chief executive officer Toto Wolff.

Apparently, Lewis stayed cool throughout the race even when his medium tyres went off in the opening stint. He was able to protect his position and then take advantage of the rain.

As for George, Wolff says he drove a nice first stint capitalising on the rain but when the conditions were just so tricky to drive, a small mistake cost him quite dearly.

“But, it was an afternoon where the team worked well, and our drivers showed their quality, too, and that shows in the points scored,” added Wolff. “We brought a big package to this race, and it has performed well.”

Next weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix will give the Silver Arrows a much better idea of how their new parts are working and, Wolff hopes, to see them edge closer to front-running pace.

“We have seen some positives in Monaco, which we know is not a representative circuit, and it will be next week in Barcelona when we get a more precise idea of competitiveness,” he said. “We don’t want to get ahead of ourselves, and I think we’re all looking forward to learning more about the car, and to seeing if we’ve made a step in performance against our immediate competitors.”

Meanwhile, Redbull’s Max Verstappen wrote another piece of Red Bull history in Monaco with a 39th win that sent him past Germany’s now-retired Sebastian Vettel as the driver with most victories for the Formula One team.

Vettel is still ahead of the Dutchman 4-2 on championships won but Verstappen, 25, has plenty of time on his side to match or surpass that mark with a third title surely on its way this season.

Verstappen is 39 points ahead of Mexican teammate and closest rival Sergio Perez after winning four of six rounds with 16 remaining to be raced.

The Spanish Grand Prix, held at the 4.657km Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on June 4, aims to feature 66 laps of thrills.

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