Lewis Hamilton - 2009 Monaco Grand Prix - The Defending Champion
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - Last year in the 2008 Monaco Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton won the race after starting from 3rd on the grid in his Vodafone McLaren Mercedes F1 car. For this Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix (May 24, 2009), Hamilton arrives in Monte-Carlo with an all-time career record of 40 starts, 9 wins, and 13 poles and says he is determined to take the win in his Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. Leading the 2009 Formula 1 season is Jenson Button, who is driving the Brawn Mercedes, and he is way out in front of the field, having already won 4 out of the last 5 races (Australia, Malaysia, Bahrain, and Spain).
In the Formula 1 Driver's Championship, Jenson Button is in first place with a total of 41 championship points, and his teammate Rubbens Barrichello, is in second place with 27 points. Lewis Hamilton currently stands in 7th place in the driver's championship with 9 points. At this Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton is a strong contender, because the circuit favours skill first, and then the car package second - which is especially true if it rains. Jenson Button's driving skills are also exceptional, and the two are expected to be near the front of the grid along with the highly skilled F1 drivers Barrichello and Fernando Alonso.
One lap of the Monaco circuit is a total 3.340 km (2.075 miles) in distance, and the race is 78 laps for a total race distance of 260.52 km (161.887 miles). The Monaco Grand Prix is an historic race and has been run within the Principality since 1929 and on the 2009 circuit there are a total of nineteen corners to negotiate. Last year's fastest lap was taken by Kimi Raikkonen (2008: 1m21.670 sec), but Michael Schumacher holds the record for the fastest lap ever (2004: 1m14.439 sec), driving a Ferrari.
Lewis Hamilton was asked about his views for this weekend's Monaco race, and he said, "Monaco is my favourite circuit. The sensation you get from racing up the hill at 175 mph, trying to make as straight a line as possible through the barriers, while just shaving them with the walls of the tires is unbelievable - the best sensation you could ever have in a Formula 1 car ....There's an expectation that Monaco will be a good circuit for our car package because the combination of low-speed corners and absence of any real fast stuff should suit MP4-24. I really hope so because it would be fantastic to have a competitive car and to be fighting at the front again."