- Monaco Grand Prix
- Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco
- Friday 26th May - Practice from 12pm on Sky Sports F1
- Saturday 27th May - Qualifying from 3pm
- Sunday 28th May - Race 2pm
Monaco Fastest Lap Can Entertain Big-Price Players
It’s the biggie, F1′s showpiece event, the Monaco Grand Prix. The irony – as this race may be Formula 1′s crown jewel but, amongst drivers, it is the most unpopular circuit of them all. The reason being – the inability to truly race as overtaking here is desperately difficult.
The history books indicate there will be a dozen or fewer on track overtakes on Sunday – and these will feature a very fast car pitted against a very slow one. With overtaking so difficult this race is often won on a Saturday during qualifying.
13 of the last 17 Monaco GP winners have started from pole position. However, quite remarkably, in the same timeframe, only two pole-setters or race winners have landed the race’ fastest lap.
Given this stat it is easy to look beyond race favourites Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez in this market and head for the outsiders that are driving a reasonably fast car. 12 drivers can be backed at 100/1-plus and it could be fun backing any of them.
17 is the Magic Number
Thankfully, the unique technicality of this race, mean Formula 1 odds compilers cannot fail to – and have – make/made some mistakes. The first could be a failure to look at the weather forecast. Many weather prediction websites believe there will be rain at some point during Sunday’s showpiece race.
A wet circuit massively improves the likelihood of a Safety Car making an appearance but that is already a prohibitive 1/7 shot. A Red Flag has been priced at 8/15 – 12 months ago this race was red-flagged after its formation lap! The cause was rain …
But, despite a race affected by downpours, 17 cars were still classified as race finishers. And that is not the first time the elements have failed to see the bulk of starters finish. It is five years since fewer than 17 cars have been classified here.
Seven of the last 11 Monaco Grand Prix have featured 17 or more classified drivers despite all but one of them requiring Safety Car intervention during the race. And so, come rain or shine, the 5/6 about ‘more than 16 classified finishers’ is an outstanding bet.
Three Leaders+ For Us
Another interesting angle comes in the number of race leaders. One leader is priced at 5/2, two leaders is 2/1. But three or more is the bet at even-money.
The prospect of a change to wet tyres at some point is likely to double the number of pit-stops needed in this contest and there is nothing like pit-stops to shuffle the pack.
The Unique Demands of Monaco
Did you know, from the seven races in Formula 1′s inaugural 1950 season, only four of them remain on the calendar: the British, Monaco, Belgian and Italian Grand Prix.
All four races take place on the same circuits they did in 1950: Silverstone, Circuit de Monaco, Spa-Francorchamps, and Monza.
Why does this matter?
Because, for Formula 1 drivers and teams, these races are what Grand Tours are to cycling devotees or Grand Slam events to tennis players. Below are some further details about this weekend’s big race in Monaco. It is the most prestigious of all Formula 1 races and, due to the circuit’s unique demands, it is not easy to win.
Monaco GP Stats & Facts
- Shortest Track - The Circuit de Monaco is the shortest track on the current F1 schedule, measuring in at only 3.337 km. The shortest circuit we visit after Zandvoort is 4.259 kilometres long, almost a full km longer.
- Highest Lap Count - The Monaco Grand Prix has 78 laps, the most of any race. It’s the only race that measures 260.286 kilometres instead of the FIA’s required minimum of 305 km.
- Shortest Run To First Corner - With only 114 metres between pole position and the first corner’s braking zone, it has the shortest run to the first corner of any other F1 circuit.
- Low Throttle - Only 34% of a Monte Carlo lap is completed at full throttle. The next lowest percentage on the F1 calendar is 43% of the lap at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico, is the next lowest throttle.
- Slowest Corner - The famous hairpin of turn six is the slowest corner F1 cars navigate throughout the season, taken at just 45 km/h. Due to the fact that this 180-degree turn is the tightest on the calendar, specialised steering racks are used.
- Lewis Top Driver - Lewis Hamilton is the most successful driver on the current Monaco Grand Prix starting drivers with three wins on the streets of the principality. Sergio Alonso’s has two wins while Sergio Perez and Max Verstappen come next with one win apiece.
* Betting odds quoted were correct at the time of publication. All F1 odds are subject to fluctuations.