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As F1 prepares to head to Monaco, one of the most spectacular and iconic weekends of the year, Mercedes are clearly in a buoyant mood.
After a much-improved Spanish GP, Lewis Hamilton’s team have declared that they now have a car capable of having its say in a title battle that has been dominated so far by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.
Leclerc, a Monaco native, hasn’t traditionally had much luck at his home Grand Prix and he DNF’s last week.
The F1 Monaco GP feels like drama is brewing…
The home hero speaks to the media. Will Charles Leclerc finally end his Monaco curse this weekend? #F1 #MonacoGP pic.twitter.com/w30n4UXuNg
Leclerc not discounting Merc, Hamilton from F1 title fight
Charles Leclerc says Mercedes’ step forward at the Spanish Grand Prix shows exactly why he never discounted the team from competing for this year’s F1 world championship.
Mercedes enjoyed their most competitive showing of the season last time out at Barcelonaas George Russell claimed his second podium finish of the season in third, while Lewis Hamilton pulled off an incredible recovery drive to fifth after picking up a first-lap puncture.
Leclerc, who has fallen behind main title rival Max Verstappen in the world championship after retiring from the lead of the race in Spain, believes Mercedes will still be a factor in this year’s championship showdown.
READ THE FULL STORY HERE
Monaco ‘curse’ not weighing on Leclerc’s mind
“I don’t think about it,” Leclerc told reports, including Crash.net in Monaco. “Of course it has not been the luckiest track for me overall but it’s life, it happens, it’s part of motorsport.
“Sometimes things just don’t go your way. Hopefully this year they will.
“I will take the same approach I have in the first races of 2022 because it has been successful up until; now and hopefully it will be successful at home.”
Magnussen reasseses view of Hamilton clash
After initially pinning the blame on Lewis Hamilton for their Turn 4 clash on the opening lap of last weekend’s Spanish GP, Kevin Magnussen has now changed his view after re-watching footage of the incident.
“I had a chance to look at it and of course changed my view on it,” Magnussen told reporters in Monaco. “I had a feeling when I was on the track that he opened his steering but that’s not what happened.
“He got into the slipstream of the Ferrari, understeered a tiny bit and I was super close to him, and I gave him much room for error, gave no margin. And we touched… it is what it is, unfortunately.”
The Haas driver added: “I just wish I had turned in one millisecond later to have a little bit more… in a corner like that, if you’re gonna go round the outside you want to be as close to him as possible.
“You don’t want to go too wide and into the dirty part of the track. That’s what I did. We touched unfortunately. There was also a lot of bad luck, if I had been a little bit further forward when we hit we would have hit rim to rim and it would have been different.
“But unfortunately I just hit the side of the tyre on his side of the tyre, and puncture. Wish I had given him slightly more room.”
Raikkonen to make NASCAR debut!
Ex-F1 driver Kimi Raikkonen will make his debut in the NASCAR Cup Series during a race appearance at Watkins Glen in August.
It will mark the Iceman’s first race outing of any kind since he retired from F1 at the end of the 2021 season.
The 2007 F1 world champion, 42, will join up with Trackhouse Racing for the road course race later this year.
Monaco memories. Always special being back here in Monte Carlo. pic.twitter.com/XnzbcQcBXc
Ex-F1 boss Ecclestone arrested for carrying a gun!
Ex-F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone was arrested in Brazil for illegally carrying a gun while boarding a private flight to Switzerland.
According to a report by Brazilian newspaper Globo.com, Ecclestone, 91, was arrested at Viracopos Airport in Campinas, Sao Paulo.
Ecclestone was stopped when the x-ray machine detected a 32-calibre LW Seecamp pistol, without the necessary documentation, inside his luggage.
READ THE FULL STORY HERE
Monaco, baby! #F1 #MonacoGP pic.twitter.com/qm79og6NNl
Hamilton’s jewellery saga set to continue in Monaco
Lewis Hamilton’s conflict with the FIA over jewellery is set to continue at this weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix.
Hamilton was given a two-race grace period to remove his nose piercing at the Miami Grand Prix.
Speaking in Barcelona, Hamilton’s view on the debate hasn’t changed at all.
This could be a storyline to watch over this weekend.
Monaco, baby. pic.twitter.com/S1dxeZL0IC
Leclerc’s run of bad luck in Monaco
Charles Leclerc has never made it to the chequered flag at his home race Can he end this run of bad luck to get his title charge back on track?
We take a look at Leclerc’s history in Monte Carlo, from F2 in 2017 to last year.
Read the full article here
Can Leclerc lift curse to break Verstappen winning streak?
Watch our definitive (and hilarious!) preview to the Monaco Grand Prix and click here to subscribe for more!
it’s been a while… but our is back in the Monaco harbour! pic.twitter.com/F0yQY3bJVG
On this day in 2019 – F1 paid tribute to legend Niki Lauda
Three-time F1 champion Niki Lauda passed away in the lead up to the 2019 Monaco Grand Prix.
The whole F1 grid gathered together in tribute of the legendary man.
A special welcome to Monaco from our home hero @Charles_Leclerc
Who’s excited for the weekend? #essereFerrari #MonacoGP pic.twitter.com/WAxpxkAtv3
Wolff doubts Mercedes can compete in Monaco
Mercedes boss Toto Wolff is unsure the team will be competitive in Monaco given it has struggled around the iconic streets in recent years.
Lewis Hamilton struggled during last year’s Monaco GP, although Valtteri Bottas was on course to finish second.
“Monaco in the past wasn’t our most happy place,” added Wolff. “Maybe because the car was the size of an elephant!
“I will be curious to see where we are this weekend. My expectations are lower than any other circuit… it’s going to be a learning point at least, to bring us back into the game.”
Good morning and welcome to Crash.net’s LIVE F1 news blog for Thursday, May 26.
Mercedes not certain they have solved porpoising issue
Despite enjoying a clear improvement in Spain, Mercedes remain cautious that their porpoising problem may not be permanently fixed.
“I think it would be wrong to say that the porpoising issue has disappeared,” said Mercedes’ F1 strategy director James Vowles.
“I think you still see it on our competitors and I am sure there will be elements of it coming back again as we build on our understanding and the foundations that we laid down in Barcelona.”
READ THE FULL STORY HERE
Do Mercedes now have a title winning F1 car?
Mercedes believe they are now in a position to fight for the world championship after making a significant breakthrough with their 2022 F1 car at the Spanish Grand Prix.
The reigning world champions endured a miserable opening five races of the season and picked up just two podium finishes as they battled to understand the porpoising phenomenon that was masking the true potential of their 2022 car.
But an upgrade package – featuring a redesigned floor – introduced in Spain helped Mercedes eliminate most of the high-speed bouncing, which in turn led to their most competitive showing of the season as George Russell took third and Lewis Hamilton recovered from being 30 seconds adrift of the pack after a first lap puncture to finish fifth.
READ THE FULL STORY HERE
#OnThisDay 14 years ago, @LewisHamilton never gave up in his quest for his maiden Monaco victory
What a race to remember! #MonacoGP #F1 pic.twitter.com/PKPFW2NimS
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