Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 June 2019

Lewis Hamilton dedicates 77th win of his career in Monaco to Niki Lauda

The Mercedes-GP driver wins as Verstappen finishes fourth after time penalty, with Sebastian Vettel and Valtteri Bottas second and third

Lewis Hamilton held on to win the Monaco Grand Prix despite running 66 laps on his second set of tyres. Getty
Lewis Hamilton held on to win the Monaco Grand Prix despite running 66 laps on his second set of tyres. Getty

Lewis Hamilton put in a masterclass in tyre preservation as he won the Monaco Grand Prix for the third time in his career on Sunday.

The Briton won ahead of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and Mercedes-GP teammate Valtteri Bottas in Monte Carlo after a tense afternoon's racing.

The race was an emotional one for Mercedes as it was the first race since non-executive chairman Niki Lauda, the three-time world champion, had died and Hamilton's race engineer Pete Bonnington said post-race on the pit radio: "That's for Niki."

Hamilton said post-race: "I was fighting with the spirit of Niki. He's been truly an influential person in our team in making it what it is today. We truly miss him."

Hamilton was pursued by Red Bull Racing's Max Verstappen for most of the race, with the Dutchman rarely more then a second behind the five-times world champion.

But Verstappen was placed fourth, despite crossing the line second, due to a five-second time penalty after he made contact with Bottas in the pitlane when they both stopped for tyres.

Hamilton's problems came when he was placed on the medium tyres when he and the frontrunners stopped for tyres behind an early safety car period caused when Ferrari's Charles Leclerc collided with Nico Hulkenberg's Renault.

His rivals were on the harder tyre and Hamilton complained on the pit radio that he couldn't make it to the end without stopping again.

He was proven wrong though as he did manage it, despite Verstappen's fierce pressure, with the two making contact in the closing laps.

Neither car was damaged and Hamilton prevailed to win for the fourth time in 2019 and opened up a 17-point lead over Bottas in the standings.

Updated: May 27, 2019 03:52 PM

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