THE MONACO GP

F1 Racing (UK) - - RACE PREVIEW -

THE MAIN EVENT

You can’t es­cape the glam­our in Monaco. Ev­ery­where you turn you see stun­ning boats, moun­tain­ous scenery, and when For­mula 1 comes to town, even more beau­ti­ful cars.

The cir­cuit can only hold 37,000 fans, but since lo­cal busi­nesses re­main open through­out the week­end you will quickly find it hard to move around with­out hav­ing to duck-and-dive through crowds of peo­ple. Although Monaco tra­di­tion­ally basks in the Mediter­ranean sun, it’s not un­known for the race to be hit by rain or squally show­ers.

The track it­self has only had small mod­i­fi­ca­tions from its orig­i­nal lay­out, partly to keep up with F1’s safety stan­dards but largely be­cause of the chang­ing to­pog­ra­phy of Monaco.

Track po­si­tion has al­ways been crit­i­cal here on the nar­row and men­ac­ing streets, and ar­guably even more with the present gen­er­a­tion of ul­tra-wide high-down­force chas­sis. Op­por­tu­ni­ties to over­take around the nar­row cir­cuit have be­come even more rare, which may lead to some frus­trated driv­ers af­ter the race. CLAS­SIC RACE: 1996

The 1996 event was the very def­i­ni­tion of a race of at­tri­tion. Just three cars were clas­si­fied as Oliver Pa­nis took a sur­pris­ing vic­tory in his Ligier from 14th on the grid.

Heavy rain fell just be­fore the start, mak­ing the con­di­tions ex­tremely slip­pery. Mid­way through the race only 11 cars re­mained and as it en­tered the clos­ing stages Ed­die Irvine (Fer­rari) crashed at Turn 7, and was then col­lected by Mika Salo (Tyrrell) and Mika Häkki­nen (Mclaren), tak­ing all three out of the race.

The three cars to take the che­quered flag were led by Pa­nis – who drove su­perbly – fol­lowed by David Coulthard (Mclaren) in sec­ond and Johnny Her­bert (Sauber).

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