Webber the sixth winner and fifth pole sitter of 2012

2012 Monaco Grand Prix stats and facts

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Monaco, 2012Mark Webber scored his eighth career win in the Monaco Grand Prix, matching Jacky Ickx and Denny Hulme’s tally of wins.

He becomes a two-time winner of the race, and the 11th driver to win the historic event more than once.

He joins Juan Manuel Fangio, Maurice Trintignant, Stirling Moss, Graham Hill, Jackie Stewart, Niki Lauda, Jody Scheckter, Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher, David Coulthard and Fernando Alonso.

Webber scored both his wins at Monaco by slender margins: 0.643s ahead of Rosberg this year, and 0.448s ahead of Sebastian Vettel two years ago, albeit under safety car conditions.

Neither of these were the closest-ever finish at Monaco: that remains Ayrton Senna’s 0.215s win over Nigel Mansell, which will be 20 years ago this Thursday.

Webber’s tenth pole position

Webber also claimed his tenth career pole position, giving him as many as Jochen Rindt.

This may seem an uncontroversial point but it inspired a surprising degree of invective in the comments from those insisting pole position belonged to Michael Schumacher. Schumacher was fastest in qualifying, but his five-place grid penalty for causing a collision with Bruno Senna in the Spanish Grand Prix relegated him to sixth.

Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, Monaco, 2012While the significance of Schumacher being fastest in qualifying for the first time since his comeback should not be missed, this was not his pole position. That did not stop several headline-writers claiming it was.

Drivers’ tallies of pole positions are based on who is allocated pole position on the starting grid. The reason for their demotion makes no difference. There are many past examples of drivers who were fastest in qualifying not gaining pole position.

Ferrari driver Cliff Allison never started a world championship race from pole position but he was fastest in qualifying for the 1959 German Grand Prix at AVUS. As he was a reserve driver, the organisers added ten seconds to his lap time, and he lined up 14th instead of first.

Other drivers who lost pole position for different reasons include Kimi Raikkonen (engine change penalty, Monza 2005), Fernando Alonso (penalty for impeding, Hungaroring 2007) and Lewis Hamilton (excluded due to stopping after qualifying, Catalunya 2012). None of these are counted towards their pole position tallies of 16, 20 and 21 respectively.

And, of course, Schumacher himself lost pole position once before at Monaco in 2006, after infamously parking his car at Rascasse to prevent other drivers from improving their times. Nor is this counted towards his pole tally of 68.

Schumacher’s now had three penalties in his last four visits to Monte-Carlo – he was controversially demoted from sixth to 12th after the 2010 race for passing Alonso under safety car conditions at the end of the race.

Six winners in six races

Webber becomes the sixth different driver to win in the first six races – a new record. Red Bull became the first team to score more than one win this year.

While much has been made of what the number of different winners says about the state of the sport, it should be remembered that we are still well short of the record of nine consecutive different winners (see the last stats and facts for details). And the record for five consecutive different teams winning has not been broken.

We’ve also had five different pole sitters in the last five races. This last happened in 2009 between the British and Belgian Grands Prix, with Sebastian Vettel, Webber, Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Giancarlo Fisichella taking pole position.

Sergio Perez became the sixth different driver to set fastest lap this year, and the seventh different driver to do so in consecutive races.

This was Perez’s first fastest lap as an F1 driver, and only the second ever by a Mexican. The other was set by Pedro Rodriguez in the 1968 French Grand Prix, held at a soaked Rouen.

Rosbergs tie on 114 starts

Nico Rosberg started his 114th Grand Prix, meaning he now has as many starts as father Keke. Here’s how their careers compare up to this point:

Nico Rosberg Keke Rosberg
1st 1 5
2nd 2 8
3rd 4 4
4th 4 11
5th 12 9
6th 12 1
7th 12 1
8th 8 4
9th 7 5
10th 7 4
Pole position 1 5
Front row 3 10
Fastest lap 2 3

Lotus’s 535th race

Romain Grosjean, Lotus, Monaco, 2012Lotus went to town on marking their “500th race”, emblazoning it on the nose of their car and tagging their Tweets “Monaco 500″.

This was a somewhat confusing gesture as the previous team called Lotus had marked the 500th start for the famous name at the 2010 European Grand Prix.

This is, of course, another example of the thoughtless use of the Lotus name in F1 over the last three years.

While Tony Fernandes-era Lotus (2010-2011) adopted the heritage of their predecessors, the new Lotus are positioning themselves as ‘Team Enstone’. The team’s website refers to their predecessors Toleman, Benetton and Renault as the team’s history.

This explains why they called the Monaco Grand Prix their ’500th race’. I cannot fathom the reasoning of doing this yet persisting to call themselves Lotus. By this reasoning their first race was the 1981 Italian Grand Prix – in which they, as Toleman, competed against the original Lotus.

For the record, this was the 535th race contested by Lotus (in their three different guises) in F1.

More Monaco Grand Prix stats and facts

Two drivers raced with helmet designs mimicking those of former F1 pilots: Raikkonen used James Hunt’s and Jean-Eric Vergne used Jean Alesi’s – itself based on the design used by Elio de Angelis.

In 1996 at Monaco David Coulthard was struggling with his helmet fogging up so he borrowed one of Michael Schumacher’s spares for the race. While the real Schumacher crashed out on the first lap, the ‘fake Schumacher’ finished second for McLaren, wearing the same helmet Schumacher had used to finish third in Brazil.

Felipe Massa and Webber led a race for the first time this year. Half the drivers in the championship have now led a race at some stage. Three more race leaders this year will equal the record of 15.

Finally, Maldonado went from hero to zero by winning from pole position in the previous race but starting last for this one and crashing out on the first lap.

Review the year so far in statistics here:

Spotted any other interesting stats and facts from the Monaco Grand Prix? Share them in the comments.

2012 Monaco Grand Prix

Browse all 2012 Monaco Grand Prix articles

Image ?? Red Bull/Getty images, Daimler/Hoch Zwei, Lotus F1 Team/LAT

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58 comments on Webber the sixth winner and fifth pole sitter of 2012

  1. necrodethmortem (@necrodethmortem) said on 28th May 2012, 17:42

    McLaren is going for the record of most places lost during pit stops in a season.

    Seriously, does anybody have stats on that?

  2. Bleu (@bleu) said on 28th May 2012, 20:46

    In all six races of the year, the Lotus driver who started from worse grid position has finished better. Grosjean leads 5-1 in grid positions (qualis are 4-2 due to Kimi’s Malaysia penalty), Kimi 5-1 in races.

  3. Andrew81 (@andrew81) said on 28th May 2012, 21:54

    Monaco wasn’t as statistically interesting as Spain, I must admit. McLaren surpassed 1000 points, counting since the new points system was introduced. Generally, it was just a continuation of the ‘variety’ stats. This season could well break records for most different drivers getting poles, wins, fastest laps, lead laps etc.

  4. paulgilb (@paulgilb) said on 28th May 2012, 22:01

    1. Karthikeyan achieved his best finish for HRT with 15th.

    2. The last 4 races have seen 4 different drivers win from pole. There was a streak of 5 such drivers in 2003 (R Schumacher, Barrichello, Montoya, Alonso, M Schumacher), which might have been 6 if Raikkonen’s engine hadn’t blown at the Nurburgring.

    3. 9 drivers failed to finish in Monaco, and all 9 were from different teams.

    4. With both of the previous 2 points-scoring systems (10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 and 10-6-4-3-2-1) the top 3 would all be tied on points (on 30 pts and 22 pts respectively).

  5. Ilanin (@ilanin) said on 28th May 2012, 22:32

    This explains why they called the Moanco Grand Prix their ’500th race’. I cannot fathom the reasoning of doing this yet persisting to call themselves Lotus. By this reasoning, their first race was the 1981 Italian Grand Prix in which they competed against Lotus.

    They competed against Renault, too, but I don’t recall many complaints (though I wouldn’t have been paying that much attention) when they declined to adopt the heritage of the old Equipe Renault squad (even when the team finally changed it’s named from Benetton to Renault, it became “Renault F1 Team” not “Equipe Renault”).

  6. montreal95 (@montreal95) said on 28th May 2012, 23:06

    Keith, Webber is the 13th driver to become multiple Monaco winner not the 11th. This is evident simply by counting the names you’ve mentioned.

  7. Kimi4WC said on 29th May 2012, 3:29

    I think it’s a good thing Lotus is doing, trying to detach them self from original Lotus team, as they are the different team. It’s just confusing that we got caught up in contractual obligation phase so name will stay until 2015?

    I’d imagine it give guys at Enstone some sort of pride knowing they have achievements of their own, and dont need to rely on others success.

    Unlike some certain factory teams.

    Unilever Enstone F1 Team :)

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 29th May 2012, 22:27

      Agreed. They’re going through a rather rocky time at the moment and it’s quite evident that the Enstone outfit is a very successful one so why shouldn’t they embrace it?

  8. Jage Owen said on 29th May 2012, 9:29

    Lewis Hamilton took part in his 96th Grand Prix for McLaren, equalling Senna’s tally for the same team, although Senna had won 35 races to Lewis’s 17 in the same number of races.

  9. Krišjānis (@maldikons) said on 29th May 2012, 9:49

    Red Bull drivers have the same points – both 50% for Weber and 50% for Vettel.
    Mercedes has the worst proportion – only 3% to Schumacher and 97% to Rosberg, then Ferrari – 88% Alonso and 12 % Masa.

    Should Ferrari fire Massa or Mercedes – Schumacher? (i know – troll question…)

    • Enigma (@enigma) said on 30th May 2012, 14:31

      @maldikons The Mercedes proportion is unrealistic, as Schumacher has had so much bad luck. Though it is interesting to see Rosberg right up there in the title battle, with Michael behind both Toro Rossos.

  10. Michael Kaminski said on 29th May 2012, 13:35

    I have no problem with Webber but I disagree with him being handed and unearned pole. I think Schumacher should have been given the 5 place penalty leaving the grid spot empty for the start of the race. This would ensure the integrity of the record books in that when looking back we’d see exactly what happened instead of looking back and seeing that Webber achieved pole which he didn’t; just saying.

  11. Kirill (@) said on 30th May 2012, 19:54

    Webber has won his 2nd Monaco Grand Prix. He joins Coulthard and Trintignant who won twice in Monte-Carlo but never won the Championship. Only one driver has 3 wins in Monaco and no title – Stirling Moss.

  12. sato113 (@sato113) said on 31st May 2012, 16:43

    lol. love the maldonado stat

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