|Nico Rosberg (photo: Mercedes AMG F1)|
Not really much in the way of highlights on track in Monaco, the real battle was the mental one.
More than just staying in front, what Rosberg was able to do was turn Hamilton mind games against him.
For all his undoubted talent, Hamilton has a fatal flaw: he often misses the opportunity to keep quiet. So, despite his advantage coming into the race in Monaco, he had felt the need to more or less knock Rosberg in the media: how he should dominate Nico. How Nico was born privileged among yachts and hotels while he was born poor and had to sleep on couches (never mind his having a motorsports career nurtured by Ron Dennis since age 12).
Rosberg made his jujitsu move Saturday and Hamilton began to unravel, culminating in that veiled threat to pull "a Senna" on Rosberg.
In reality Rosberg had the measure of Hamilton all week end, Lewis was never faster and ended up losing his cool during the race, blaming the team for not bringing him in just before the second safety car. Later in the race Lewis continued to exchange tense messages with his pit. Finally that bizarre episode with something hitting him in the eye. After the race, the two did not exchange any words or shake hands.
It's not inconceivable that soon we will hear accusations Mercedes is favoring Rosberg because he's German but curious Hamilton was the first to break ranks by using extra power to stay ahead of Nico in Spain.
|Kimi Raikkonen (Photo: Ferrari)|
As for the rest, a real shame Raikkonen's race got destroyed by Max Chilton who somehow managed to run into him during the second safety car, puncturing a tire on the Ferrari.
If Chilton was the pits, Jules Bianchi was the star managing to finish eighth and giving Marussia their first points.
Not a good race for Renault power with Vettel out early and trouble at Toro Rosso and Lotus... though one might suspect Lotus faked a failure on Maldonado's car as a preemptive cost saving measure.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1h49m27.661s 2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes +9.210s 3. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault +9.614s 4. Fernando Alonso Ferrari +32.452s 5. Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes -1 lap 6. Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes -1 lap 7. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes -1 lap 8. Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault -1 lap 9. Jules Bianchi Marussia-Ferrari -1 lap 10. Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Mercedes -1 lap 11. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault -1 lap 12. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari -1 lap 13. Kamui Kobayashi Caterham-Renault -3 laps 14. Max Chilton Marussia-Ferrari -3 laps Retirements: Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 59 laps Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 55 laps Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 50 laps Adrian Sutil Sauber-Ferrari 23 laps Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso-Renault 10 laps Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 5 laps Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 0 laps Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Renault 0 laps
Drivers' championship: Pos Driver Points 1. Nico Rosberg 122 2. Lewis Hamilton 118 3. Fernando Alonso 61 4. Daniel Ricciardo 54 5. Nico Hulkenberg 47 6. Sebastian Vettel 45 7. Valtteri Bottas 34 8. Jenson Button 31 9. Kevin Magnussen 21 10. Sergio Perez 20 11. Felipe Massa 18 12. Kimi Raikkonen 17 13. Romain Grosjean 8 14. Jean-Eric Vergne 4 15. Daniil Kvyat 4 16. Jules Bianchi 2 Constructors' championship: Pos Team Points 1. Mercedes 240 2. Red Bull-Renault 99 3. Ferrari 78 4. Force India-Mercedes 67 5. McLaren-Mercedes 52 6. Williams-Mercedes 52 7. Lotus-Renault 8 8. Toro Rosso-Renault 8 9. Marussia-Ferrari 2 10. Sauber-Ferrari 0 11. Caterham-Renault 0