The Monaco Grand Prix Just Proved It Deserves A Place In Modern Formula 1
(Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
— Updated on 20 June 2023

The Monaco Grand Prix Just Proved It Deserves A Place In Modern Formula 1

— Updated on 20 June 2023
Garry Lu
WORDS BY
Garry Lu

Not only has the 2023 Monaco Grand Prix justified its place in modern Formula 1, but also reminded us of the singular magic that exists within this elite motorsport we enjoy.

As some of you recall, almost a year ago to the day, Monaco was approaching the final stretch of its F1 hosting contract when financial negotiations reportedly took a rather hostile turn.

Coupled with the increased level of scrutiny regarding the legendary street circuit’s one-dimensional nature – F1’s slowest corner in the Grand Hotel Hairpin (30 MPH), virtually zero overtaking opportunities – it seemed as though the storied principality was at risk of being dropped from the calendar altogether.

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Eventually ink met paper, and Monaco would manage to lock in another three-year deal. Unsurprising, considering its one of the most prestigious race victories available, right next to the Indianapolis 500 and the 24 Hours of Le Mans (which together form the coveted Triple Crown), regardless of whatever personal feelings may be at play here.

Still, some were unconvinced it was worth keeping. Until this past weekend.

While the 78-lap event only furthered both Red Bull Racing and reigning two-time champion Max Verstappen’s considerable advantage in the standings – something just about everyone has become accustomed to in the ongoing (and relatively unchallenged) era of Red Bull/Verstappen hegemony – the story that unfolded was certainly one for the books.

Qualifying alone was surprisingly dramatic. The desperate shuffle to avoid elimination culminated in a close battle between Verstappen and fellow two-time world champion Fernando Alonso (Aston Martin), both of whom were obviously vying for pole position. Because as we all know, he who obtains pole in Monaco is almost guaranteed the win… unless your name is Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.

The margins between the young bull and the grid veteran were razor thin. It seemed as though the Spaniard had successfully pipped the Dutchman to start up front come Sunday, especially given the latter only had the circuit’s shortest sector to shave an almost-impossible fraction of a second from his final lap time.

But impossible is nothing more than a three-syllable word to Super Max, and after putting together a sensational lap, he’d earned the privilege of leading.

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Where qualifying proved to be surprisingly dramatic, race day proved to be downright cinematic. Nominal contact during the opening lap and rapid tyre degradation aside, a forecasted bout of rain plunged competitors into a welcome bit of chaos. “Welcome” for all of us watching trackside/at home removed from first-hand mayhem, that is.

Once the mad scramble to switch to either intermediates or full wets was out of the way, there were epic triumphs for the likes of Fernando Alonso and his former teammate Esteban Ocon; devastating heartbreaks (yet again) for Scuderia Ferrari’s Leclerc, Carlos Sainz Jr, as well as Alpha Tauri’s Yuki Tsunoda (those goddamn brakes!); along with everything else you’d expect from a work of fiction. Or a highly-anticipated season of Netflix’s Drive To Survive.

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Granted, Max Verstappen was virtually competing in a race of his own, pulling ahead with an extraordinarily commanding lead that’ll probably be cited during Red Bull engineering boss Adrian Newey‘s next salary negotiations. Everyone else from P2 right down to P10, however, brought their sharpened elbows out to reward fans with pure spectator sport.

And for that, we’re grateful.

The Monaco Grand Prix Proved It Deserves To Stay In Formula 1
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – MAY 28: Race winner Max Verstappen of the Netherlands and Oracle Red Bull Racing celebrates on the podium during the F1 Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 28, 2023 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

2023 Monaco Grand Prix Results

PositionDriverTeamLapsTimePoints
1 Max VerstappenRed Bull781:48:51.98025
2 Fernando AlonsoAston Martin781:49:19.90118
3 Esteban OconAlpine781:49:28.97015
4 Lewis HamiltonMercedes781:49:31.04213
5 George RussellMercedes781:49:48.26410
6 Charles LeclercFerrari781:49:53.8708
7 Pierre GaslyAlpine781:49:54.3426
8 Carlos SainzFerrari781:49:55.3714
9 Lando NorrisMcLaren771 lap2
10 Oscar PiastriMcLaren771 lap1
11 Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo771 lap 
12 Nyck de VriesAlpha Tauri771 lap 
13 Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo771 lap 
14 Alex AlbonWilliams771 lap 
15 Yuki TsunodaAlpha Tauri762 laps 
16 Sergio PerezRed Bull762 laps 
17 Nico HulkenbergHaas762 laps 
18 Logan SargeantWilliams762 laps 
 DNF Kevin MagnussenHaas70  
 DNF Lance StrollAston Martin53
Garry Lu
WORDS by
After stretching his legs with companies such as The Motley Fool and the odd marketing agency, Garry joined Boss Hunting in 2019 as a fully-fledged Content Specialist. In 2021, he was promoted to News Editor. Garry proudly retains a blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, black bruises from Muay Thai, as well as a black belt in all things pop culture. Drop him a line at [email protected]