McLaren preview the Monaco GP

Date published: May 23 2016

A favourite with the McLaren drivers, Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button are relishing the challenge of racing in Monte Carlo…

Fernando Alonso: “Monaco is such a special place. I don’t think there are many drivers in the world that can say they don’t like racing there. Because it’s so narrow, and overtaking is almost impossible, it can be incredibly frustrating, but the feeling when you put together the perfect lap, or manage an overtaking manoeuvre, is all the more satisfying.

“It’s a real challenge to get the set-up right for Monaco because of its unique characteristics, but often we see some unpredictable racing there because the nature of it tends to shuffle the pack up. I’m optimistic that we can dial-in our car to suit the track because we have a very well-balanced chassis, so it will be interesting to see how we measure up when the circuit’s characteristics are more likely to play to our strengths.”

Jenson Button: “I love this track – although we are now seeing more street circuits appearing on the Formula 1 calendar, Monaco is like no other in the world. It requires a completely unique set-up – more traction, high downforce, more steering angle, softer suspension – and the feeling you get driving around there is among the best you experience as a driver.

“It’s not a fast circuit, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t feel it. The barriers are so close you feel like you can reach out and touch them, and you need absolute 100% focus and concentration to get the most out of each lap, every lap – or pay serious consequences. One small mistake and you’ll definitely be punished, which is what makes it such a great driver’s track. It’s a real test, and one we look forward to taking every year we go back there."

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