Vettel passed the qualifying in 8th place and crossed the line in 5th place. Both numbers show the best performance of the season so far.
In the race, Charles Leclerc’s non-start and Valtteri Bottas’ retirement helped him in two places, but even 7th would have been a good reward.
Perhaps more important than stats is how to turn on speed when you need a few laps of quick laps before stopping, and a chicken game when Pierre Guthrie races up the hill after leaving the pits. It was a bold approach to.
After Vettel seemed lost in his later years at Ferrari, it was the charging performance that reminded people that he hadn’t forgotten how to drive, after not surpassing 13th place in the first four races. This year, I went some way to deal with skeptics.
Vettel, who won the Monaco in 2011 and 2017, finished 8th and 10th in two sessions from the start of practice on Thursday and was comfortable in the car. Importantly, he outperformed his teammate Lance Stroll. Lance Stroll usually has the upper hand this year.
Helped by the latest package of AMR1 floor updates, he was quickly tracked for Monaco as Silverstone’s outfit continues to find downforce lost due to winter rule changes.
He came to qualifying and just finished Q1 on the 15th after gambling with only one set of tires. He then came in 9th in the second quarter, 1st in the 3rd quarter and 8th on the grid. I put myself right behind the troubled Lewis Hamilton.
This is the second time this year that four world champions have advanced to the third quarter after finishing 10th in Portugal earlier this month.
“It was tight in the first quarter, so I used only one set, which was a bit of a risk,” he said after the session.
“But in the end it didn’t help because I had two sets of tires and a red flag. I think it was a good day overall. Now I have five qualifying sessions and it’s always in the right condition. So it’s tight.
“Here it was a bit clearer than elsewhere in the second quarter, but overall we are always fighting up and down in 10th place.
“I’ve already practiced well around here. In the end, 8th place isn’t pole position, but it’s much better than the last race, so I have to take it and aim for some points tomorrow. Bring to see what the race will be like. “
Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR21
Photo: Jerry Andre / Motorsport image
The absence of Leclerc from the grid meant that Vettel was first promoted to 7th place. At the opening stint, he ran behind Guthrie and Hamilton, and in front of Sergio Perez. The Mercedes driver stopped first on lap 29, followed by the AlphaTauri man one lap later.
With a clear course and soft tires left alive, Vettel made a few laps of quick laps and the two rivals were hard and speeding up.
“I enjoyed it because it was an important time,” he explained. “The first 10 laps were pretty boring. Sergio only pushed first, but there was no threat, and he retreated to save the tires. The lap in front of the pits will be important. I knew that I was going to turn out to be.
“So I just enjoyed the fact that I was on the car and could push it when I needed it, and I knew how the car would react.”
When he entered on lap 31, it was a race from the pit lane. He did enough to jump Hamilton safely, but when he headed for Ste De Beaute, he could see Guthrie.
It turns into a pit exit lane and climbs the hills they almost touched. In the end, it was the AlphaTauri driver who had to do his best to retreat, allowing Vettel to move forward.
“I thought it would be close,” Vettel said. “But near that, it’s always hard to foresee. I always had a nose a while back and could see him. But he was almost lined up, so how far I went It wasn’t enough to know if it was. It was only a quarter to half of the car, but then it started to move from side to side.
“At some point he stopped it because he didn’t know if I saw him. I gave him a room but I had fresh tires. I It wasn’t the most comfortable route as it also passed the pickup. To the casino! “
Very different strategies, including a long opening stint of hard tires, facilitated the walk from 13th to 8th on the grid. Aston scored 14 points and jumped from 7th to 5th on the championship table.
“Well, obviously I think it was good for all of us,” Vettel said. “Today I had a good call from the pits and I had a pace. This is useful if I can go out and increase my pace by two or three more laps.
Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR21
Photo: Eric Junius
“The software really felt good. At first I was cruising, pushing the car forward and slowly closing the gap. I thought I might have a chance to hunt down Sergio at that pace. I had, but it wasn’t possible because he had another second from there.
“But other than that, it was great for us today, as we obviously got Lewis and Pierre.”
It wasn’t an easy transition to Aston Martin for Vettel, and after a disappointing final season at Ferrari he took a lot of sticks.
But he was more interested in boosting a tough team to start this year with a new name than his reputation.
“I’m happy with the team. After such a good season last year, I think we’ve made a disappointing start in many ways this year. I think that’s what we need and deserve everyone. Also, it’s a good signal to everyone. Home factory. Lots of things are happening.
“But hopefully this result will help us keep our spirits high. It may gain a bit of momentum for a stronger race.”
Vettel, of course, wants the team to continue to get more performance out of the car, giving him even more chances to fight like Sunday.
“Obviously it’s very tight in the midfield. Adding a tenth or two can make a big difference wherever you are. Maybe it’s enough to get into the third quarter, maybe enough to race. This is because it may not be possible, such as avoiding that one lap or undercutting it to make it work.
“After all, when you look at the weekend, maybe only 5 minutes is really important. It’s the qualifying lap, and the important lap of the race, but everything needs to work well in such a tight field. “
How Vettel redeemed himself in Monaco
https://www.motorsport.com/f1/news/how-vettel-redeemed-himself-in-monaco/6514647/?utm_source=RSS&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=RSS-ALL&utm_term=News&utm_content=www How Vettel redeemed himself in Monaco