Racing legend Jackie Stewart said it best, “If Hollywood wrote a script, it couldn’t have done a better job than to put a Grand Prix in Monaco.”
The Formula One World Championship returns to the Circuit de Monaco on May 25th for the 66th running of the Monaco Grand Prix, in what is annually one of the most demanding races in the series.
According to F1.com, drivers will change gears a staggering 54 times per lap at Monaco, meaning more than 4,200 changes over the course of the race. Just 42 percent of the lap is spent at full throttle, with the longest period of full-throttle running a mere eight seconds.
Niki Lauda sums up the difficulties in driving the track, declaring, “The whole circuit is exciting because you have no room for any mistakes. As soon as you lose concentration for one percent, you will crash.”
Run since 1929, the Monaco Grand Prix is widely considered to be one of the most important and prestigious races in the world alongside the Indianapolis 500 and the 24 Hours of Le Mans (with which it forms the Triple Crown of Motorsport). The history, spectacle and glamour result in the race being considered “the jewel of the Formula One crown.”
The following videos are rarely seen footage of Monaco as seen and told by the drivers. Produced in 1992, the videos contain commentary by Jackie Stewart, Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Ricardo Patrese and Niki Lauda, plus fantastic race footage and sounds.
Monaco – The Jewel in Crown Part 1 of 3 (8:29 minutes)[youtube:http://youtube.com/watch?v=mqS3sRYi1Dc 500 425]
Monaco – The Jewel in Crown Part 2 of 3 (8:25 minutes)[youtube:http://youtube.com/watch?v=QZIRWjT9mVA 500 425]
Monaco – The Jewel in Crown Part 3 of 3 (8:16 minutes)[youtube:http://youtube.com/watch?v=43rvOHyZODs 500 425]
[Source: Photo credit: Autosports Marketing Associates, Ltd.]