This weekend we head to the coast of the Mediterranean and the crown jewel in the F1 calendar, the Monaco Grand Prix, a race that needs no introduction. The streets of Monte Carlo leave little margin for error, the tight and twisty circuit being highly unforgiving and demanding the very best from both car and driver.
Robert and George are both familiar with the track, with the Pole climbing on to the unique podium twice as he finished second in 2008 and third in 2010. The young Brit meanwhile got his first taste of the principality in FIA F2 last year but will be looking for a smoother weekend this time around, having retired from both races in 2018. Finally, the team had a successful two-day test at the Circuit de Barcelona- Catalunya and is aiming to continue this progress at the weekend.
Dave Robson, Senior Race Engineer: Monaco is always one of the highlights of the Formula One calendar. Although a challenging event for the drivers and engineers alike, the surroundings and atmosphere make it a uniquely enjoyable race.
Following the race and test in Barcelona, we believe that we have improved the performance of the FW42 and increased our understanding of the car and the tyres. Whether this will show or not in Monaco is unclear due to the unique nature of the Monte Carlo circuit and unpredictable local climate. However, we look forward to the challenge of Monaco knowing that we will need to make some changes to the car to suit this circuit and knowing how important it is to develop the drivers’ confidence over the course of the weekend. We also know that Monaco can spring a few surprises and we will be ready to use our excellent reliability and pit stop performance to exploit any opportunities that arise.
Robert Kubica: Monaco is a challenging circuit. I remember the streets to be narrow, and now the cars are wider and much bigger, it will be tough. It is a special race, one very different to the others on the Formula One calendar. Already this year, we have had a street circuit race in Baku with close walls and barriers, but Monaco has different characteristics and I look forward to driving there.
George Russell: Monaco is a very iconic circuit and place on the Formula One calendar. It will be a privilege to drive around the streets once again. Last year in Formula 2 was my worst weekend of the year, so I hope to make a better job of it this year.