And the winner today was…… Australia’s Daniel Ricciardo who qualified fastest for tomorrow’s Monaco Grand Prix. He was pretty happy about it too!Several drivers brought their partners with them including Fernando Alonso and Pierre Gasly.In the morning the teams were rehearsing pit stops in a very crowded pit lane. There was a bevy of well dressed people traversing the pits including this snappily dressed woman, keen to get a snap with these volunteers. Niki Lauda cut a lonely figure in the window above the Mercedes garage. Down below and a coupe of garages over, Daniel was focused on FP3, rolling his lightweight mouthguard around his mouth while mulling over something important as can be seen here. And as the clock struck noon, it was time for an hour of practice around the streets of Monaco, although I spent the hour in pit lane.Valtteri Bottas hit a barrier during this session, damaging his rear wing which resulted in “all hands on deck” when he brought his car back to the garage.The folks above these mirrored windows at the end of pit lane had a fine view of the cars as they headed back out on the track.And while the Red Bulls were easily the fastest cars during FP3, Max Verstappen buggered his chances of a front row place by putting his into the barrier at the exit of the swimming pool chicane. This meant he had to walk/jog back to his garage. Two hours after FP3 finished it was time for qualification and surprisingly no one hit a barrier so the session ran uninterrupted.During the second part I went to the exit of the swimming pool chicane where I and 3 other photographers stood frightfully close to the cars hoping that the very low armco would keep us safe. We all survived. For the final part I hung around Rascasse, one of the slowest corners, and then crossed the bridge to shoot the top 3 pull up just around the corner from here.In the post qualifying session press conference, Daniel was humble and enthusiastic. Seb was gracious and accepted his 2nd place. While Lewis was a completely different person to the one that shows up when it’s Lewis qualifying first.
The weather in Monaco today was warm, and the place looked amazing as this pic shows. This was taken by my son atop one of the buildings on the main straight. Our boat is the third from left in front of the Mercedes rounding Tabac. Yesterday was a day off for the F1 cars but the drivers were out doing promotional stuff for their team and sponsors.
Staying on board the boat Quid Pro Quo, we were delighted to see Valtteri Bottas arrive by tender for a meet and greet with Mika Hakkinen and 30 or so fans on board the boat Ava next to us. Mika worked like a trojan all day with groups coming and going, everyone keen for a selfie or autograph. He’s a fine man in my books. And finally, here’s a photo of a delightful Serbian woman staying on our boat. She’s a character. Bye now.