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Piastri’s second a belated reward for prolific pace

Matt Clayton
Monday, 27 May 2024

Oscar Piastri has had podium pace – with zero luck – for the past two Grands Prix; at the most famous race of all, he had fortune and track position in his favour, and a third Grand Prix podium was the result.

Oscar Piastri finally got the reward his recent pace suggested was imminent, the McLaren driver equalling his best Grand Prix result with a second-place finish from second on the grid in Monaco on Sunday.

Piastri had been rapid but raced without luck in Miami, where a strong podium chance was thwarted after contact with Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, and again at Imola, where a post-qualifying penalty punted him off the front row.


After finishing fourth three times this season, Piastri was happy to finally earn a third career podium he felt had been a long time coming.

“Obviously very happy with the podium, it’s been a great weekend from start to finish and nice to finally get a result on the board,” he said after matching his best race result from Qatar last year.

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“I felt like the last few weeks we’ve been very, very strong with no results to show. Today, to finish second, is a great result for everybody involved.”

In a typically processional Monaco race – the top 10 drivers in qualifying held those positions for 78 laps – Piastri had a scare at the start when he clashed with Sainz into the first corner, Sainz coming off second-best and stopping with a puncture just before the race was red-flagged for a massive accident involving Haas driver Kevin Magnussen and Red Bull’s Sergio Perez, which also eliminated Magnussen’s teammate Nico Hulkenberg.

Piastri battled with a damaged floor thereafter, and while he harried pole-sitter and eventual race-winner Charles Leclerc in the early stages, the Monegasque driver broke away late, leaving Piastri to have to hold on against Sainz and McLaren teammate Lando Norris in the closing stages.

“I tried my best to try and sneak past [Leclerc], but it was just too difficult,” he said.

“I had one little half-look [at passing Leclerc] before the tunnel, but I didn’t have a small enough car to fit into a gap. Charles has been mega all weekend and I think it would have taken something pretty special in qualy to out-do them. The opportunity was there, but it probably would have taken the best lap of my life.”

Piastri finished 7.152secs behind Leclerc at the end, with just 1.5secs separating the Australian, Sainz and Norris at the flag.

“When I saw the floor after the red flag I thought it was going to be a very long race, but the pace at the beginning was so slow it was helping me out a little bit,” Piastri said.

“The last 15-20 laps when we started to go, I didn’t have an answer. Clearly Carlos and Lando were quicker behind, but I was pretty happy we were at Monaco at that point!

“With the damage and everything considered, happy with P2.”

Oscar Piastri at the Monaco Grand Prix

Oscar’s Monaco Grand Prix by the numbers

  • Qualified: 2nd
  • Race: 2nd
  • Fastest lap: 1min 16.281secs (11th), lap 73
  • Points this event: 18
  • Points this season: 71 (6th in world championship)