This Year's Monaco Grand Prix is Going to Knock Your Socks Off

Think of 750bhp lightweights going sideways with no runoff, think of fat slicks with not enough grip to cope, think of barricaded passageways claiming every great driver from Ascari to Senna; these were the glory days of Formula 1, these are the glory days of 2014.

Let's face it, the Grand Prix at Monaco has been a bit of a conga line the past few years with low stakes for the pole sitter and little to no passing for everyone else. I can recollect one year when the top 4 or 5 positions were bunched up for the last 20 laps an no overtakes occurred, not even a driver being forced into a mistake by the pressure of the driver behind.

However, for the 2014 season the torque output has been dramatically proliferated thanks to the new power units. The Energy Recovery System (ERS) has been changed to last roughly 33 seconds a lap with 160bhp going directly to the rear wheels while also preemptively spinning up the turbo, thereby eradicating turbo-lag. The combination of the ERS and the turbo on the new V6 engines give this iteration of Pirelli tires more possible torque output than they can handle.

These new power units have called for almost every journalist, engineer, and driver (save for the 4-time WDC, but that's more due to his pouty attitude) to claim the 2014 cars as showing more of the driver's talent than before.

Due to the torque increase, the driver now has to judge to a greater degree on how much throttle to give; this is especially tricky on corner exit as even a little too much throttle will lead to dramatic oversteer.

This Year's Monaco Grand Prix is Going to Knock Your Socks Off

Romain Grosjean proclaims both his excitement and hesitation about racing in Monte Carlo with the new Lotus chassis,

I've been super quick in the past, but also hit the walls! There will be less grip than in the past, so we will have to be careful with the right foot. The emphasis at Monaco is on low speed corners, which is not our greatest strength, but the team worked with Monaco in mind during the Barcelona test.

The Lotus deputy team principle, Federico Gastaldi, reaffirms's his driver's opinion of the famous city circuit and the new cars,

Of course the cars should be really spectacular there with the added torque this year and it will be easy for the drivers to make mistakes. This could bite us or it could help us because overtaking is so difficult.

Perhaps a Mercedes victory is too certain to root against, seeing as their chassis' power delivery is nearer to perfection than Memphis barbecue, but we must not count against it as the battle between Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton, last seen at its closest in Bahrain, could spill tears in Monaco with the city's razor-close walls and narrow streets choking a driver's easy path to victory.

This Year's Monaco Grand Prix is Going to Knock Your Socks Off

Behind the Mercedes W05s, the battle with certainly be closer than ever.

Infiniti Red Bull are claiming to have a better chassis than Mercedes, but they could just be blowing smoke at their sponsors, seeing that they were more than a second off the pace in Barcelona.

Kimi Raikkonen is back on top of his F14T Ferrari after struggling with ERS generation fitting in with his driving style, bringing him closer to the Ferrari's golden child, Fernando Alonso.

Lotus look to be making massive improvements with Pastor Maldonado setting the top time at the second Barcelona test and Romain Grosjean qualifying 5th and scoring the Enstone-based team's first points at the Spanish Gran Prix.

As long as you're not watching for the noise, this year's Monaco GP will bring all the factors for a spectacular race: more power than grip, inter-team battles guaranteeing to end in tears, a circuit with no room for mistakes, and most of all the dramatic beauty of the Monaco streets.


quotes via Formula1.com | images via F1 Fanatic