Sebastian Vettel wins Monaco GP ahead of Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen

  • Sebastian Vettel wins Monaco GP ahead of Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen

Sebastian Vettel wins Monaco GP ahead of Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen

Sebastian Vettel beat his Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen to win the Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday and comfortably extend his lead at the top of the standings.

Strong performances in qualifying on Saturday from both Raikkonen and Vettel meant that the chances of Ferrari taking a first Monaco Grand Prix victory since 2001 were always high.

It was also the 29-year-old German's second Monaco triumph, his third win this year and the 45th of his career, lifting him 25 points clear of Mercedes' Hamilton in the title racxe.

Championship leader Vettel trailed pole-sitter Kimi Raikkonen for the opening phase of the race, but emerged from his one and only pit stop ahead of his Ferrari team-mate after stopping later. The decision to overcut Vettel further cements his number one status in the team and is the latest indicator that Ferrari is keen to back its leading driver all the way to the 2017 title.

Kimi Raikkonen wasn't a happy man on the podium.

"Hard to say, really", he responded when asked about his feelings. He went from 1.1s behind Raikkonen to two seconds in front, and that was all she wrote. "This is how it is sometimes".

Vettel, who started in second behind his teammate Kimi Raikkonen, took advantage of his team's pit-stop strategy. "I wasn't sure if I damaged anything". "When these tyres lose their temperature behind the safety vehicle, it's like driving on ice", he said "I thought I'd damaged the auto, but I was lucky".

The Finn came into the street race hunting his first win since the 2013 Australian Grand Prix having qualifed on his first pole for nearly a decade, a position he converted into a solid lead during the first-half of the race.

Jenson Button retired on lap 58 after sustaining suspension damage during a botched attempted overtake of Pascal Wehrlein at Portier that saw the latter's vehicle flipped sideways into the barrier.

He added: "It's unbelievable".

"The Ferrari seems to work everywhere so these next 14 races are going to be very hard. I was sad yesterday, I was devastated but to come away with some points is better than nothing", Hamilton said.

When he was asked directly if he thought Ferrari's strategy had cost him victory, he added: "I haven't seen what happened, I only know what happened when I was in the vehicle but I haven't seen the bigger piucture. I had a couple of laps where I really pushed and it made a difference", Vettel said.

Raikkonen pitted earlier and was dropped into traffic by his Ferrari team, while Vettel stayed out and made the most of clean air to set some blistering lap times and pull out a sufficient gap to his teammate.

"I knew that the team would call me as soon as we were really tight to Valtteri. That was about it", he said.

The conditions were ideal for sunbathing, but not for race incidents. Although the Red Bulls also had Valtteri Bottas' Mercedes in the mix, meaning it was not a straight fight between teammates, Vettel used the example as proof that Ferrari's strategy was not unusual. Early suggestions are that Ferrari could be on the verge of a new one.

"I had a couple of laps where the auto was feeling really good".