Round five of the 2021 Formula One World Championship season has been and gone after a weekend of both heartbreak and happiness.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen dominated from lights out in Monaco and was joined on the podium by Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz in P2 and Mclaren’s Lando Norris in P3.
The spirits of Carlos Sainz amid his first podium in red was dampened by the devastating fate of his Monegasque teammate Charles Leclerc – who was out of Sunday’s battle just before lights out due to an issue with his SF21.
The Spanish Ferrari driver described his podium finish as a “bittersweet” moment but said they “achieved the maximum” on track with just one contender.
Let’s see what this weekend’s podium sitters had to say after their Monaco results sank in:
MAX VERSTAPPEN – P1
“I’m super happy to win the Monaco Grand Prix. It’s such a tricky track and you need a smooth weekend so I’m very pleased with what we have achieved as a Team and of course with Honda.
“I just had to focus on my own race and make sure I had a clean start.
“Of course it all looked under control but to keep your focus for so many laps is the hardest part because it’s easy to relax when you’re in the lead and make a mistake, so you have to keep reminding yourself to leave your thoughts on the road and stay focused.
“I think pace-wise, we were always in control because every time someone tried to push me in terms of lap time, we were able to respond and increase the gap.
CARLOS SAINZ – P2
“The first podium in a Ferrari is an incredible feeling that I will never forget, especially being in Monaco! We knew we had a chance and the pace to make it to the podium this weekend and we executed a flawless race.
“The bittersweet feeling is still there though as I feel for Charles and for the team. All of us here at the track and back home in Maranello are working incredibly hard to be competitive and to make our way back to the top.
“So it was very unfortunate that today we could not fight with two cars.
“From my side, I am obviously happy with P2 because I think it was the maximum we could achieve today from where we started.
“We are still missing the final step that we all want to make, but if we keep pushing like this I’m sure we will get there sooner rather than later! Forza Ferrari!”
LANDO NORRIS – P3
“Awesome. Monaco podium! It’s pretty incredible, I never thought it could happen to come into this weekend at all, so I’m super, super happy.
“I’m proud of the team for what we’ve achieved this weekend. We’ve made some good progress. We’ve still got more work to do – it’s not like we can let up now – but another trophy and a lot of points for us, which is pretty awesome.
“A big thanks to the whole team and everyone back at the factory as well for all the work they’re putting into it.
“It’s paying off, and I hope this is motivation to work even harder and keep bringing improvements.”
Round 6 of the 2021 championship takes place on June 6 at the Baku City Circuit.