Formula One Power Rankings 2023 - Monaco Grand Prix

The Jewel in the Crown for Formula One was defined by wild weather and another disappointing weekend for Ferrari with bad call after bad call changing the shape of the race.

If anyone thought the Monaco Grand Prix was boring they didn't tune in to the 2023 race weekend, which featured what was arguably one of the most exciting Qualifying sessions and races of the season to date.

Last week's rankings are in brackets.

1. Red Bull Racing (1)

In the lead-up to the weekend, there was much chatter about how if Red Bull were to not win a race this season, that race would most likely be Monaco. The lack of straights, opportunities to use the RB19's frankly outrageous DRS, and chances to overtake gave its rival teams a glimmer of hope.

With the amount that Max Verstappen was complaining about his car in Free Practice 1, one would be led to believe that he was doing worse than what his sixth-place finish suggests. However, order was resumed imminently as he topped the remaining Free Practice Sessions. His outstanding lap in Q3 in which he managed to eke out three-tenths of pace against Alonso for pole position, masterfully weaving through the turns of sector three, made his win look inevitable.

It was a less-than-ideal weekend for Sergio Perez, dubbed King of the Streets, who crashed on his second Qualifying lap of Q1. Starting at the back of the grid on Sunday, the Mexican driver was subsequently pitted five times and ended up being lapped twice by his teammate.

2. Mercedes (2)

Heading into the Monaco Grand Prix all eyes were on the Mercedes garage as the team brought in its first upgrades package for the season at what many would say is the worst track to do it. Naturally, there were a few teething issues with George Russell lacking confidence in the car on Friday and Lewis Hamilton crashing out of FP3 resulting in the car being hoisted into the skies but it was safe to say there was a fair bit of hope in the new package.

Hamilton struggled in the first two rounds of Qualifying, barely making it out of both sessions before putting together a brilliant lap to outqualify Russell and show there was some potential in the W14 despite the massive changes.

Come race day both drivers seemed settled into the car a little more, no longer complaining about how challenging it was to drive with Hamilton challenging the Ferraris in the early stages of the race. The strategy worked in the team's favour for the pair to finish in fourth and fifth despite a five-second penalty for Russell for rejoining the track in an unsafe manner. Eyes will be on Mercedes in Spain now which will be the real testing ground for the new upgrades package as to whether they can now challenge Aston Martin and Red Bull.

3. Aston Martin (3)

Aston Martin were geared up for a strong weekend, hungry for a win and ready to take advantage of any opportunity to garner a win in Monaco. Both Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll looked promising throughout the free practice sessions.

However, the fates of the teammates diverged drastically come Qualifying. Alonso remained up front and was only just edged out by Verstappen for pole position. Meanwhile, Stroll started the race in P14, and was forced to retire the car after colliding with Kevin Magnussen and sustaining damage to his right wing.

Alonso managed to remain in second place for the entirety of the race, unable to get close enough to Verstappen to challenge for first. A strange tyre strategy mishap, in which he was pitted for slicks despite oncoming rain, forced him to pit for intermediate tyres one lap later. The Spanish driver had enough of a gap to retain P2 after a subsequent pit for intermediate tyres, making the most out of the AMR23's impressive speed.

4. Alpine (5)

In a race weekend where everyone seemed to think they were a chance of sneaking onto the podium, it was Alpine and Esteban Ocon that managed to do it. Starting the weekend in solid form, both Ocon and Pierre Gasly looked confident coming out of the practice sessions building on each session with Gasly looking the better of the two.

But come Qualifying it was all about Ocon who adjusted better to the rapidly evolving track to qualify in P4 after briefly nabbing provisional pole and earning a P3 start following the handing down of a grid place penalty for Leclerc. Meanwhile Gasly earned himself a P7 start, adapting well throughout the sessions but not able to replicate the same pace his teammate had.

On race day both of the French drivers hardly put a foot wrong despite relentless pressure from both the Ferraris and the Mercedes'. Running in third for almost the entire race, the team's only major flaw for the weekend was a few ordinary pitstops including a seven-second stop for Gasly once the rain started to fall however he was not deterred, splitting the Ferraris and managing to match Leclerc's pace until the end of the race.

Ocon's third-place finish marks the first podium in Monaco for a French driver since Olivier Panis won in 1996 and Alpine's first podium since Alonso's in Qatar in 2021.

5. Ferrari (4)

All eyes were on Ferrari in Monaco, as everyone hoped that Charles Leclerc would experience better luck at his home race than he had previously. Unfortunately, it was not meant to be, as the team's weekend was plagued with errors.

The misfortunes began on Friday when Carlos Sainz crashed in the swimming pool section during Free Practice 2 during an otherwise solid session. On Saturday, the bad luck befell Leclerc, who was penalised three grid positions for impeding Lando Norris after his team failed to inform him of the McLaren driver's whereabouts. Leclerc would subsequently drop from P3 down to P6, further dimming the hopes for a home win.

On race day, Leclerc was unable to make up any positions, unable to catch up to the Mercedes which were ahead. Sainz, who started in P4, damaged his left front wing after coming into contact with Esteban Ocon. The team elected not to replace the front wing of Sainz's car, hoping that a strategic pit stop will suffice to squeeze into third place, having already coordinated numerous fake-outs in an attempt to pressure the Alpine driver to pit earlier. The strategy ultimately backfired, as Sainz ended up falling further back after their first pit stop, and then was forced to double stack behind Leclerc for intermediate tyres when the rain hit, ultimately finishing in P8.

6. Alfa Romeo (9)

A lot of positives can be taken away for Alfa Romeo following the Monaco Grand Prix despite both Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu finishing outside of the points. The Finnish driver proved to be consistent in practice finishing between eighth and 11th in all three sessions whilst Zhou struggled at his second appearance in Monaco.

This was even more obvious with Zhou qualifying in P19 despite the Chinese driver briefly setting the fastest time in the first Qualifying session, while Bottas was the victim of traffic in the second session unable to put together a competitive enough lap to get out of Q2.

On race day however, things worked in both drivers' favour, with Zhou managing to hang on to the back of Perez to slowly move up the grid and Bottas looking competitive against the Alpha Tauris, even strategy seemed to play into the teams' hand however the car still seems to be lacking some of the much-needed pace with both cars outdriving the car this weekend in the challenging conditions.

7. McLaren (10)

It was another solid race for McLaren who, while not delivering an outstanding performance, managed to keep their noses clean on the Circuit de Monaco.

For rookie Oscar Piastri's first time racing in Monaco, the main goal leading up to the race was to familiarise himself with the track as much as possible. Some struggle was to be expected during the free practice, but he managed to pull it together in time for Qualifying, only just missing out on Q3.

Meanwhile, teammate Lando Norris's Qualifying was less smooth sailing. Last-minute repairs after he made contact with the barriers in Q2, and being blocked by Leclerc during a flying lap prevented him from putting a good lap time in. Both Norris and Piastri benefited from Tsunoda's brake issues during the race, managing to gain a position to both end up in the points in P9 and P10 respectively.

8. Alpha Tauri (6)

Results aren't everything and for Alpha Tauri in Monaco, they won't be regarded too highly with the Red Bull sister team unable to have a weekend that plays to both of its driver's favour.

Saturday highlighted once again how consistent Yuki Tsunoda has been all season, second only to Verstappen in Q1 and reaching Q3 for the second time this season, while De Vries was finally able to take away some positives from Qualifying, putting the car into P12 ahead of Stroll and Perez.

Race day looked like everything was going to plan with Tsunoda running in P9 for a majority of the race despite being dramatically slower than the top eight but he quickly dropped out of the points due to issues with his brakes. Meanwhile, De Vries managed to look competitive with those around him, sandwiched between the two Alfa Romeos by the end of the race to finish in 12th for his best finish of the season.

9. Williams (8)

Williams entered the weekend with the knowledge that its car would not be well-suited for the twists and turns of the Monaco track. While both drivers managed to find pockets of potential throughout the weekend, it was ultimately a lacklustre performance for the team.

Alex Albon was going well until his crash that ended Free Practice 1 early. The team managed to have the car ready halfway into Free Practice 2 but lost out on even more time due to the red flag from Sainz's crash. A solid FP3 session set him up well for to qualify in P13 for the race, while teammate Logan Sargeant just missed the cut-off for Q2.

During the race, Sargeant had his tyre strategy thrown up in the air, as early degradation on his medium tyres and an early puncture in his hard tyres found him forced into a lesson at tyre management, driving on used softs for over 20 laps until the rain hit. The team will be seeking out better results in Barcelona, with hopes that the classic track format will be better suited to the quirks of the FW45.

10. Haas (7)

Monaco is never easy and things just didn't seem to go Haas' way all weekend with every risk the team took seemingly backfiring in its faces.

After mediocre performances in practice, the team waited until late in Q1 to send Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg out, and despite the track evolution over the course of the 18-minute session, the pair finished two-tenths off the pace to qualify in P17 and P18, respectively.

Come Sunday it was a tall order to ask for either car to break out of the bottom five and things looked dicey early with Hulkenberg making contact with Sargent on the opening lap, earning a five-second penalty and a subsequent 10-second penalty for failing to serve it properly. Magnussen didn't fare much better, with the team neglecting to pit him for intermediate tyres for several laps only for Magnussen to crash as he headed into the pits damaging his front wing with the mechanics waiting until he was in the pit box to get a new wing. However, things didn't get any better with Magnussen effectively serving as a guinea pig for the newly introduced full wet tyres, struggling to find any grip and ultimately retiring from the race with eight laps to go.