Fernando Alonso has added another achievement to his increasingly impressive repertoire with a win at Monaco. It was a fairly interesting race by Monaco standards - there were bumps, bangs, and politics aplenty, and to add to it all, some overtaking!
I'll lay out the podium order first, just to make those who missed the race. In first place was Fernando Alonso, second Juan Pablo Montoya, and incredibly, in third David Coulthard.
The end results do not represent the whole race, however; the race started uneventfully with just the Midland cars bumping each other. However on lap two, Mark Webber made a mistake at Sainte Devote that allowed Kimi Raikonen to get passed into second place; he then set about catching the front-running Alonso.
For the next 10 laps or so, the first four cars ran within four seconds of each other, one of the tightest races we have seen this year in the F1 championship. Michael Schumacher, who had started from the pit lane after the steward decision and an engine change, was caught up behind the struggling Jenson Button.
However, on lap 21 things started to happen. Michael Schumacher passed Jenson Button and proceeded to pull away from the ailing driver. Then the front runners started to pit; first up was Juan Pablo Montoya who took on around 10 seconds of fuel, then a lap later his teammate and then second place-running Kimi Raikonen stopped for roughly the same amount of fuel.
We believed at that point the Renault team could probably go further, as we had expected the McLaren team to do as well, however on lap 24 and 25 the two Renaults and Mark Webber pitted. However Kimi had upped his pace on his out laps from the pit and Renault had to short-fill Alonso with just seven seconds of fuel to maintain track position.
This then seemed to put the next set of stops into the hands of the McLarens, as the Silver cars could run longer than the Renaults and hopefully get track position. This strategy was however ruined for the McLaren team as Webber, still running in third position, seemed to struggle and lose power down the main straight on lap 47; his engine was then seen smoking and the exhaust caught fire, forcing him to stop just past the pit lane exit around the Sainte Devote corner. This caused the safety car to be deployed and all the front running teams to call their drivers into the pits for a fill-up.