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Last Updated: Sunday, 27 May 2007, 11:10 GMT 12:10 UK
Monaco Grand Prix
Monte Carlo, 27 May 2007 The Chequered Flag podcast



Final positions after 78 laps:

1. Alonso (McLaren)

2. Hamilton (McLaren)

3. Massa (Ferrari)

4. Fisichella (Renault)

5. Kubica (BMW Sauber)

6. Heidfeld (BMW Sauber)

7. Wurz (Williams)

LATEST ACTION (all times BST)

By Sarah Holt

606: DEBATE

Lap 78: And that's it as Alonso takes the chequered flag and punches his fist in the air. Victory for the Spaniard takes him to the top of the drivers' standings. He is level on points with Hamilton but because he has won two Grands Prix this season he climbs above the Briton.

A bit of a disappointing day for Ferrari - played out under the watchful eye of Michael Schumacher - as Massa takes third more than a minute adrift and Raikkonen wheels in in eighth.

Fisichella earns fourth for Renault ahead of BMW Sauber duo Kubica and Heidfeld while Alexander Wurz scores his first points in seventh for Williams.

Lap 76: With all the interest in the front runners it is worth mentioning that Scott Speed has had a very decent race indeed as he has moved up from 18th on the grid to ninth.

Lap 75: A faultless drive from Alonso looks to be taking him to his second straight Monaco title while Hamilton is on course for his fourth straight second-place finish.

"Just to finish second here and so close to the reigning world champion is a huge tribute to someone making his debut in F1."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap 74: It looks as though there won't be any shake-ups in the order as the drivers edge round the final four laps in Monte Carlo. Alonso leads by 3.3 seconds with Massa more than a minute behind in third. Fisichella is on course for Renault's best performance this season in fourth.

Lap 72: The BMW pit is ready for a stop but both Heidfeld and Kubica whizz past so the mechanics go and sit back down - hopefully they will make it through the remaining six laps.

Lap 68: The McLarens are running at pretty much the same pace now with Alonso 2.9 seconds ahead of Hamilton. It will be a satisfying day for Ron Dennis' team as he looks on course to wrap up a 14th Monaco win for McLaren.

Lap 66: At the front Alonso is two seconds ahead of Hamilton, who has had a couple of little wobbles as the race reaches its closing stages.

Lap 65: Raikkonen could launch a bit of an attack on Wurz in seventh as the Ferrari man is the fastest driver out on the circuit now, apart from Alonso.

Lap 63: Button pits from eighth which allows Raikkonen to move up into the last points position.

Lap 62: The McLaren drivers look like they are content to cruise to a finish now as they are running at almost two seconds slower than they were up until their pit-stops.

Lap 60: One driver who wasn't able to keep his cool was Adrian Sutil. He led final practice on Saturday but his Monaco weekend sputtered out on lap 56 when he rattled his car into the barrier and brought his Spyker to a stop in Casino Square.

Lap 58: The battle at the front is really heating up and keeping their cool will be really important for both McLaren drivers now.

"Alonso just has to make sure he doesn't make a mistake or get flustered now."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap 57: Hamilton has cut the lead on Alonso to 1.9 seconds. The Briton is running at a much faster pace than the Spaniard, has he got something up his sleeve yet?

Lap 56: Massa pits from third and Fisichella pits from fourth.

Lap 54: Alonso holds a four-second lead over his McLaren team-mate in second. It looks as though the Spaniard is on course to take the chequered flag.

"The gap is not as comfortable by any means and Alonso might just worry what Hamilton can do to take advantage."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap 53: Hamilton pits and Alonso resumes the lead.

Lap 51: Alonso comes into the pits and he takes on soft tyres. This is Hamilton's last chance to make up some time.

Lap 50: Hamilton has been falling further behind Alonso, the only conclusion can be that Alonso is just setting down a relentless pace.

"It's been strange that and I don't know if McLaren got the strategy wrong."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap 49: Raikkonen comes into the Ferrari pits from seventh place.

Lap 46: Kubica pits from fifth and takes on some new soft tyres. He still manages to come back out in front of team-mate

Lap 44: Double world champion Alonso sets a new fastest lap in Monaco as he lays down a hot one of 1:15.284.

Lap 43: Alonso has stretched his lead to 7.6 seconds over Hamilton while Coulthard comes in to the pits to pick up a new front wing.

Lap 42: Button pits from seventh and he takes on the hard tyres.

Lap 40: At the front things are running smoothly and steadily as McLaren go in search of a one-two. The order could yet be decided though as Alonso is 4.6 seconds ahead of Hamilton.

"You've got to know how to win at Monaco. Alonso has mixed results here but with one win under his belt last year he knows how to control it."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap 39: Now then, we may have got to the bottom of Rosberg's problem as he complains of tyre imbalance. Coulthard reports he is also worried about his front wing.

Lap 36: So here is where we are at as we approach just about the half-way stage of the race. Alonso leads Hamilton by 4.4 seconds with Massa 29.4 seconds behind the Briton.

Of the other Britons, Button is running in seventh now, though he has yet to pit. Davidson is down in 18th but is just pitting for his drive-through while David Coulthard is 13th.

Lap 35: Britain's Anthony Davidson is given a drive-through penalty for ignoring the blue flags which warn him to move out of the way of the leaders.

Lap 34: Hamilton eats a little bit more into Alonso's lead. It is four seconds now.

Lap 33: Heidfeld pits from fourth. He rejoins in ninth place just squeezing in between Jenson Button and Raikkonen.

Lap 32: Hamilton continues to put Alonso under pressure and he has cut the gap to four seconds.

Lap 31: The majority of the drivers have yet to come into the pits and so it looks as though many of them are running on one-stop strategies.

Lap 30: Still trying to work out what has happened to Rosberg - he pitted from sixth but crept back in in 12th.

Lap 29: Oh spoke too soon - Hamilton pits from the lead and gets in and out in 8.9 seconds. He gets a new set of hard tyres.

Lap 28: So Hamilton is yet to pit and leads Alonso by 15 seconds. He also sets the fastest lap of the race so far on this lap of 1:15.372.

Lap 27: Massa comes into the Ferrari pits and he collects some softer tyres too.

Lap 26: Alonso comes into the pits, leaving Hamilton to lead the Grand Prix. This is his chance to make up some time.

Lap 24: Fisichella pits from fourth and Rosberg pits from sixth.

Lap 22: Alonso sets the new fastest lap in Monaco of 1:15.721. Not such good news for Webber who has retired.

Lap 20: Alonso lost nearly four seconds after getting stuck in traffic but then the same thing happens to Hamilton as he gets stuck coming through the Swimming Pool section. The gap is back to 5.5 seconds.

Lap 19: Hamilton sets the fastest lap in Monaco of 1:16.374.

"He's been superb to watch I have to say, he flings the car around and has complete confidence.
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap 19: Webber comes into the pits and it looks like he won't be able to carry on racing as he complains of the rear wheels locking up.

Lap 18: The leaders have pretty much caught up with the back-markers now and they are surprisingly Ralf Schumacher for Toyota and Spyker's Christijan Albers.

Lap 16: Looks like the celebs won't be needing their brollys in Monte Carlo as the grey clouds have moved away, which means the race should be played out in dry conditions.

Lap 14: Alonso is seven seconds clear off Hamilton. Rosberg is trying to edge round Heidfeld but he cannot quite make it - maybe not his fault though as passing is never easy in Monaco.

Lap 12: Giancarlo Fisichella is looking good in fourth for Renault, considering the problems the team have had discovering some genuine speed. He is running around about the same pace as Massa in third but is way ahead of Heidfeld in fifth.

Lap 11: Alonso's lead over Hamilton is nearly 5 seconds now while Massa is 3 seconds behind the young Briton.

Lap nine: Oh dear, Liuzzi looks a bit grim as he walks back to the paddocks.

Lap eight: Alonso's lead is now 3.1 seconds over Alonso.

"Hamilton just did a personal best to reduce the gap. He seems to have picked up speed a bit more now and is getting into the groove."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

Lap six: So apart from Liuzzi's slide and crash into the barriers it has been a pretty settled start in Monte Carlo. Raikkonen is still trying to make a move while Nico Rosberg is chasing down Heidfeld.

Lap five: Alonso is really making his intentions clear as he continues to set a blistering pace in the very early stages. This lap is the fastest so far at 1:16.515 and he builds a 2.5-second lead over Hamilton.

Lap four: At the front Alonso is stretching his lead over his McLaren team-mate Hamilton - it is up to 1.8 seconds now. Liuzzi's car is removed from the track.

Lap three: Things did not go so well for Kim Raikkonen but the Finn in the Ferrari is picking his way through the field now. He started in 16th and is now up to 12th.

Lap two: The Monte Carlo streets prove too much for Vitantonio Liuzzi as he slides his Toro Rosso into the barriers coming out of the Massenet corner.

Lap one: No major changes in the first lap as Alonso peels away in front of Hamilton. The only incident saw BMW Sauber's Nick Heidfeld jump above Nico Rosberg's Williams. Mark Webber drops to eight behind Rubens Barrichello's Honda.

1302: The lights go green are here we go.

1259: The protective covers come off the tyres and the drivers are away on their parade lap around the 2.075-mile circuit.

1257: "It's a very big ask for a novice like Hamilton to win here because the slightest mistake and you touch the side. To win he has to beat Alonso - so Hamilton needs to stay cool."
Five Live analyst Maurice Hamilton

1251: The drivers are settling into their cars now and the crowds are ready for what is set up to be a thrilling race.

1246: A few reports of it feeling a little bit damp in the atmosphere - is rain on the way? The drivers are putting in their ear-plugs and getting ready to slide into their cars.

1237: Hamilton is preparing for his first Formula One race through the streets of Monaco. He has an impeccable record on this circuit, winning the 2006 GP2 race and two Formula Three races here already.

What are the chances of winning his first F1 race today? Well looking at the betting they seem to be quite short actually, 13/8 and 9/4 pretty average - but Alonso is still rated as favourite.

1220: Monte Carlo always attracts a glamorous crowd and spotted so far are Hollywood actors Jude Law and Johnny Lee Miller, tennis ace Boris Becker and chef Gordon Ramsay - make of that what you will.

1205: With 55 minutes before the start of the race, the sun is shining in Monaco. Dark clouds are brushing the top of the mountains that surround the Principality, but there is said to be no immediate threat of rain.

Lewis Hamilton looks to have a superb chance of taking his first victory in only his fifth Formula One race at the iconic Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday.

The 22-year-old Englishman starts F1's most prestigious race from second on the grid, just behind McLaren team-mate Fernando Alonso, the world champion.

The Spaniard grabbed pole position in the closing seconds of qualifying, displacing Hamilton from the top of the time sheets.

But Hamilton had been on an even faster lap that looked set to secure his place at the front of the grid when he was held up by Mark Webber's Red Bull.

Hamilton has put Alonso in the shade in the last two races, and must be considered a strong tip for victory, even though Monaco is one of F1's most demanding races.

No other driver has won on the streets of the Principality in his first season, although the late Ayrton Senna came close in 1984.



SEE ALSO
Monaco GP photos
27 May 07 |  Motorsport
Alonso eclipses Hamilton for pole
26 May 07 |  Formula One
Monaco qualifying as it happened
26 May 07 |  Formula One


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