Tag Archives: Monaco

Monaco Recap

The principality of Monaca is a familiar sight for SBMRL fans, and the league traveled there for the 5th time. Fresh off a pair of victories in Austin and Bahrain, everyone was gunning for Jaap Snellrijder. In just three races, he was already more than half way to his points total from last year, but he was starting from the back with some very experience drivers ahead of him.

The starting grid looked as follows:

P1 – Luigi (SM)
P2 – Rask Sjofar (SB)
P3 – The Stig (SB)
P4 – Delilah Whipplefilter (FR)
P5 – Mario (SM)
P6 – Launch Bornado (FR)
P7 – Whiplash (RM)
P8 – Jaap Snellrijder (RM)

A clean start saw the field take off for Sainte Devote, with the top five cars on the grid all piling into the corner one after the other. The Stig made a move on Luigi at Casino, but it was Delilah who saw her way past both of them and led the field into Loews.

Delilah leads early

The tight hairpin soon saw the entire field cramming themselves through, but just as they came in, they came out, with Delilah pushing on through the tunnel.

The high speed tunnel start to spread the field out

Delilah got a leg up on Luigi at the Chicane and the Stig made a charge there as well. While the rest of the field battled, Mario started to fall back, unable to keep pace with the others.

As the three front runners worked their way around La Piscine, Whiplash, Launch, Jaap, and Rask were wheel to wheel in Bureau de Tabac. Almost nothing separated them.

Jockeying for position

In the third sector, Delilah maintained her lead. Luigi and three time Monaco winner the Stig fought for second place, with the expert coming out of Anthony Noghes just ahead. However, the Stig dove to the pits for fresh rubber while Luigi stayed out in an effort to get ahead. It worked. He passed the pit exit just as Delilah was coming out, taking over the lead.

Delilah’s pit stop costs her

Among the chasing pack, Launch and Rask managed to stay just ahead of both Regency Motors drivers. Both were in and out of the pits extremely fast… credit to their crews here… and both managed to stay ahead of Jaap and Whiplash despite the yellow cars foregoing their chance for new tires.

The first sector of the second lap saw Luigi and Delilah going back and forth in their struggle for the lead. Neither could gain any sort of lasting advantage. While Jaap and Whiplash weren’t able to take advantage of not pitting into Sainte Devote, they were able to fly through the following straight and on into Casino, catching up with the Stig in the fight for third place.

Delilah leads, with Whiplash up to third

Delilah and Luigi continued to battle through Mirabeau and into Loews, but Whiplash wasn’t quite able to keep up with the Stig and Jaap. Launch and Rask were not far behind, and soon caught up to Whiplash.

Unlike the first lap, where Delilah found speed in the tunnel and left Luigi behind, this time around it was Luigi who found speed and Delilah struggled to keep up. The difference was that while Luigi was ahead, Delilah was able to keep him in her sights, and she once again passed him at Tabac.

Delilah back in the lead, after ceding it to Luigi

Meanwhile, the fight between Jaap and the Stig was rejoined by Whiplash, who was not prepared to give up. Launch and Rask did their best to keep up.

The midfield battle

It was ultimately Jaap that would pull away from that pack and get the edge. The Stig found his car lacking desire into the third sector, and now Whiplash and Rask were upon him.

At the front, the final few corners witnessed Delilah just keeping Luigi at bay, crossing the line just fractions of a second ahead of the Switch Motorsports driver.

Delilah wins!

With Jaap coming in a comfortable third, the Stig and Rask managed to put Whiplash behind them at the very end. Launch had an utterly forgettable third sector, and was just barely able to hold on to 7th place from Mario, who looked completely devoid of any shot at moving up early.

Final Results

Delilah Whipplefilter (FR)421
Luigi (SR)112
Jaap Snellrijder (RM)873
The Stig (SB)334
Rask Sjofar (SB)255
Whiplash (RM)766
Launch Bornado (FR)647
Mario (SR)588

Monaco was a shot in the arm for Delilah as she wins her first race of the season and gets her first podium of the year in the process. She’s now tied with her teammate, Launch, for 4th in career wins. It also vaults her up to 3rd in the driver standings.

Equally important was Luigi’s 2nd place finish. It was his first podium and a chance to demonstrate that he belongs after struggling through the first three races. The podium was rounded out by Jaap, who looks every bit as confident as he did in his championship season 4 years ago.

On a team level, Regency Motors, Scandinavian Blitz, and Switch Motorsports all scored 22 or 23 points on the race. Delilah’s victory gave Force Ravenswood 31 points, but given how tight the results were, there wasn’t much movement in the team standings.

Race Gallery

Monaco Preview

Another December, another trip to Monaco for one of the league’s two evergreen tracks (Austin has also been raced at every season).

Monaco (D)

Monaco is, of course, nothing new to the SBMRL and nothing new to racing. It’s hosted a Formula 1 Grand Prix since 1950 and racing on the famed streets dates back to the 1920’s.

The short start-finish straight always results in tight, wheel bumping action in Sainte Devote on the first lap. The straight that follows lets drivers open it up a bit… more so on the second lap for those who haven’t pitted.

The second sector starts slow and then gets fast in the tunnel. Coming out of the Loews hairpin complex with speed for the tunnel is key, and the Nouveau Chicane is a favorite passing spot.

The final sector is trickier than it looks at first glance. There isn’t a break anywhere. Hardly anything separates one corner from the next. The key here is the exit. If drivers can get Rascasse and Anthony Noghes right, they can fly down the start-finish straight.

Starting Grid

Monaco’s grid will see cars line up in the following order:

  1. Luigi (SM)
  2. Rask Sjofar (SB)
  3. The Stig (SB)
  4. Delilah Whipplefilter (FR)
  5. Mario (SM)
  6. Launch Bornado (FR)
  7. Whiplash (RM)
  8. Jaap Snellrijder (RM)

Luigi had best be on his form at the start. Despite starting on pole position, he’s got two excellent drivers around him in the Stig and Rask. The Scandinavian Blitz pair finished 1-2 here last year, and the Stig has taken 3 of the 4 wins to be had.

Pit selection in order of team standings looks like this:

  1. Regency Motors
  2. Force Ravenswood
  3. Scandinavian Blitz
  4. Switch Motorsport

Delilah and the Stig both claim Monaco as their home race this year.

Track History

As mentioned above, the Stig has 3 wins and easily the most points. It shouldn’t be much of a surprise, either, that Jaap and Launch follow him in that regard, with Jaap taking the remaining win. Whiplash is the only other driver on the grid with more than one start, and he has yet to finish higher than 5th. Rask, who starts 2nd this year, also started 2nd last year when he took 2nd place. In fact, the driver starting in 2nd has never finished lower than 4th.

SBMRL @ Monaco

Monaco Recap

The SBMRL made their annual trip to Monaco for December’s race, with a typically comfortable day in store.  The grid featured penalties for the Stig and Jaap, which resulted in the following starting positions:

P1 – Delilah Whipplefilter (FR)
P2 – Rask Sjofar (SB)
P3 – Sheila Dinkum (RM)
P4 – The Stig (SB)
P5 – Launch Bornado (FR)
P6 – Jaap Snellrijder (RM)
P7 – Whiplash (SR)
P8 – Bubba McQueen (SR)

The field got off to a clean start with the pecking order seeing no substantial changes through the first corner.  The field remained tightly packed, largely as predicted, with the first sector not revealing any particular changes of note.  The field only began to separate a bit once they were in Casino and Mirabeau.

Early race action

The Stig and Sheila led the way into Loews but nearly the entire field was jockeying for space behind them.  Only Whiplash lagged behind.  The Stig led the way through the tunnel with Sheila struggling to keep pace.  Delilah led Launch, Rask, Bubba, and Jaap behind them.

Through the tunnel

The Stig kept up his pace into the third sector, but Sheila was caught up by the others at Tabac.  Launch also began to struggle, with Whiplash recovering from a miserable first half lap to put himself back in the mix.

Sector three saw Regency Motors start to make their move.  While the Stig pulled into the pits ahead of the field, Rask, Jaap, and Sheila rounded the Anthony Noghes corner.  Delilah and Launch were now in a direct battle with both of the Sprite Racing drivers.

The Stig leads over a tight group of challengers

Sheila stayed out instead of opting for fresh rubber, which had her passing the Stig around Sainte Devote at the start of the second lap.  The others all went in, with Rask emerging first, followed by Jaap and Bubba.  Force Ravenswood were the ones that came out at the back and would have the most ground to make up over the final lap.

Sheila and the Stig jockeyed back and forth through the first sector, but the Stig pulled ahead at Mirabeau.  Behind them, a similar battle between their teammates was raging, and soon all four cars were slogging around the Loews hairpin.

Sheila can’t keep up

Whiplash, Launch, and Delilah fought behind them, and soon disaster struck.  Launch tried to take the inside line in Loews and get ahead of Whiplash, but a small misjudgment meant a collision and the end of the race for Launch.  Adding insult to injury for Force Ravenswood, Bubba was able to take advantage of the mayhem and catch up with Delilah.

Launch crashes out

The driver who was able to take advantage of the crash induced caution was Jaap, who flew down the tunnel at speed in an effort to catch up with the Stig.  The race’s long time leader suddenly found himself passed at the chicane, but Jaap’s momentary brilliance was undone with a poor approach at Tabac.

Jaap’s temporary lead

While the Stig pulled away at the swimming pool, Jaap was soon accompanied by Sheila and Rask.  Stig took the checkered flag as Rask got an edge on the others in the final two corners.  He would hold on to take second place with Jaap just fractions of a second behind.  Sheila was comfortably fourth.

The Stig on his way to victory

As for the rest of the field, Whiplash, managed to run a smooth third sector, but it wasn’t enough to threaten the others.  In the end, it was a quiet 5th place finish.  Less quiet was the battle against ignominy that Delilah and Bubba were mired in.  The two went back and forth in the third sector, with Delilah initially ahead, then Bubba, then back to Delilah.  Bubba managed to find a better line through Rascasse and Anthony Noghes, leaving Delilah just short.

Final Results

Driver Start Lap Finish
The Stig (SB) 4 1 1
Rask Sjofar (SB) 2 3 2
Jaap Snellrijder (RM) 6 4 3
Sheila Dinkum (RM) 3 2 4
Whiplash (SR) 7 6 5
Bubba McQueen (SR) 8 5 6
Delilah Whipplefilter (FR) 1 8 7
Launch Bornado (FR) 5 7 8, dnf

The Stig gets his 3rd Monaco victory in 4 races, which also makes him the first driver to win at three times at a single venue.  It’s his 7 career victory, which ties him with Jaap for the SBMRL career lead.

Rask snatched the second podium of his short career thus far.  It marks a fine turnaround from the last two races, where he finished 7th and 8th.  Jaap’s third place finish matches his performance last time out in Singapore.  Despite his track record of success, the only other time he’s had consecutive podiums was three in a row near the end of the SBMRL’s inaugural season.  The top three finishers now sit as the top 3 in the driver standings.

Scandinavian Blitz’s 1-2 finish marks the 5th time that has happened in SBMRL history.  They are also now the only team to have done it more than once, having previously accomplished the feat at the Nurburgring in the 2016-17 season.  Given that we’ve only had five 1-2 finishes, it’s no surprise that this is the first time that we’ve had each team see their cars cross the line in consecutive order*.  As a result, Scandinavian Blitz has taken a healthy lead with Force Ravenswood falling to the back after their disastrous result.  Sprite Racing was far enough ahead of Regency Motors that those teams now sit tied in the middle.

* Note that at Austin in the 2016-17 season, 4 of the 5 teams saw their cars cross the line one after the other.  The only team that didn’t was Red Bull, who saw Mater win and Danger Wheel finish 4th.

Race Gallery