Categories: News

Red Bull confirms favorite role during free practice rides in Monaco, Mercedes on the defensive

Sergio Perez
Foto: Red Bull Racing

Sergio Perez set the fastest time during the first practice session for the Monaco GP. Max Verstappen’s Mexican teammate was a handful of thousandths faster than Carlos Sainz in the Ferrari and Max Verstappen. With this, Red Bull immediately puts the pressure on Mercedes because Hamilton and Bottas had to settle for the fifth and sixth fastest time.

Normally the first practice sessions are held on Friday, but in Monaco the first two practice sessions are already held on Thursday. Add to that the spectacular images of F1 cars tearing close to the crash barriers on top and you know that Monaco really is the odd one out on the F1 calendar.

For Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc it is extra special to drive in Monaco, for him it is after all a home race. During the installation round, Leclerc could therefore wave to his friends and family.

So much for the good news for Leclerc, because a moment later the Monegask was already back in the pit box due to a problem with the gearbox. Leclerc’s session ended early, not ideal for the rest of the race weekend. After all, you normally build up the right rhythm gradually throughout the sessions and the race weekend.

The first practice session did not go very well for two-time F1 champion Fernando Alonso either. After all, he hit the crash barriers in his Alpine F1 car and damaged his front wing.

McLaren is driving in Monaco with a special Gulf livery on its car. The one-off livery already looked very nice on the studio photos, but with the sun the livery looked even more beautiful on the streets of Monaco.

However, it was mainly looking forward to what Max Verstappen and Red Bull could achieve. Mercedes won three of the first four races but put the favorite role for the GP of Monaco in the shoes of Red Bull.

On the very short and narrow street circuit, the times were very close and it was Sergio Perez, Max Verstappen’s teammate, who managed to set the fastest time. Perez was a handful of thousandths faster than Carlos Sainz who showed a very strong performance in the Ferrari. Mercedes did not get further than the fifth and sixth fastest time.

01 Sergio Pérez Red Bull 1: 12.487 36

02 Carlos Sainz Ferrari 1: 12.606 32

03 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:12.648 39

04 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1:12.929 37

05 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:12.995 34

06 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1: 13.131 36

07 Lando Norris McLaren 1: 13.236 31

08 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 1:13.732 33

09 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 1: 13.746 39

10 Kimi Räikkönen Alfa Romeo 1: 14.081 31

11 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1:14.090 33

12 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 1: 14.106 27

13 Fernando Alonso Alpine 1:14.205 37

14 Nicholas Latifi Williams 1:14.268 41

15 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 1: 14.281 36

16 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1:14.320 37

17 Nikita Mazepin Haas 1:14.616 33

18 Mick Schumacher Haas 1:14.801 35

19 George Russell Williams 1:14.840 35

20 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 1: 19.618 4

More F1 News:

  • – Max Verstappen responds to Lewis Hamilton’s statement: “I have nothing to prove to him”
  • – James Bond stunt driver Jessica Hawkins joins the Aston Martin F1 team
  • – “Lewis Hamilton will make more mistakes under the pressure of Max Verstappen”
  • – McLaren: “Ready to strike when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton crash”
  • – Nico Rosberg reveals reason behind sudden F1 retirement after winning F1 title in 2016
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