The 1979 Monaco Grand Prix, otherwise known as the XXXVI Grand Prix Automobile de Monaco, was the seventh race of the 1979 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged at the Circuit de Monaco on the 27 May 1979. The race would see Jody Scheckter claim his second win in a row, although it was the heroics of Clay Regazzoni that ultimately stole the show.
Scheckter would start the race in perfect form, defeating teammate Gilles Villeneuve in a duel for pole that saw the Ferraris lap two thirds of a second faster than anyone else. Patrick Depailler proved to be their closest challenger in the Ligier, while Regazzoni would start a lowly sixteenth for Williams.
The start also saw Scheckter assert his dominance, the South African managing to sprint clear as teammate Villeneuve squabbled, and lost out, to Niki Lauda. They were chased by Depailler into Sainte Devote and up the hill, with Jacques Laffite and Didier Pironi leading the charge from fifth and sixth.
The opening laps proved to be rather tame, although Regazzoni would quietly go about picking off the slower cars ahead of him to climb into the top ten. Out front, meanwhile, Scheckter was able to establish a small lead over teammate Villeneuve, whom squeezed ahead of Lauda on lap three before blasting clear of the Austrian.
Pironi hence became the centre of attention, although only for his antics in removing the two Ligiers from contention with two clumsy lunges. His first dive on lap sixteen force Laffite to head to the pits with damage, before he careened into the back of Depailler at Loews Hairpin and briefly flicked his compatriot onto two wheels.
Indeed, it took a third collision to remove Pironi from the race completely, the Frenchman ultimately taking Lauda out with him as he tried a lunge on lap 22. Those collisions hence put Alan Jones into third, with the Ferraris pacing themselves out front, while Regazzoni was promoted into the points.
More retirements would work to Regazzoni's benefit, with Jones, Jean-Pierre Jarier and Jochen Mass all hitting trouble to put the Swiss racer onto the podium. A transmission failure for Villeneuve then left Scheckter on his own out front, with the Swiss racer taking an all or nothing approach to catch the lone Ferrari.
The pair duly started the final lap nose-to-tail but, try as he might, Regazzoni could not squeeze his Williams ahead of the scarlet Ferrari before the chequered flag. Scheckter therefore claimed a second victory of the season ahead of the ex-Ferrari racer, while Carlos Reutemann secured third after an engine failure removed a recovering Depailler from the race with two laps to go. The Frenchman was subsequently classified in fifth behind John Watson, while Mass survived a gearbox issue to limp home in sixth, albeit seven laps off the lead.
With six races down and nine to go it was Jacques Laffite who led the Championship hunt, level on points with race winner Jody Scheckter, but ahead by virtue of having two wins to the South African's one. Gilles Villeneuve completed the top three, level with Patrick Depailler but ahead on countback, while Carlos Reutemann completed the top five. Indeed, just five points separated the top five after the opening six rounds, with defending Champion Mario Andretti next up but twelve points off the pace.
In the International Cup for Constructors it was Ferrari who led the charge at the end of the weekend, sneaking back ahead of Ligier-Ford Cosworth by a single point. Indeed, with almost two thirds of the season still to go it seemed as if those two would be in a private duel for the crown, although Lotus-Ford Cosworth remained in contention in third. Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth were next, with less than half the number of points than Lotus, while McLaren-Ford Cosworth were even further off the pace in fifth.
The full entry list for the 1979 Monaco Grand Prix is outlined below:
The full qualifying results for the 1979 Monaco Grand Prix are outlined below:
|3||25||Patrick Depailler||Ligier-Ford Cosworth||1:28.69||1:27.11||+0.66s|
|4||5||Niki Lauda||Brabham-Alfa Romeo||1:28.32||1:27.21||+0.76s|
|5||26||Jacques Laffite||Ligier-Ford Cosworth||1:29.83||1:27.26||+0.81s|
|6||4||Jean-Pierre Jarier||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||1:28.62||1:27.42||+0.97s|
|7||3||Didier Pironi||Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth||1:28.99||1:27.42||+0.97s|
|8||30||Jochen Mass||Arrows-Ford Cosworth||1:29.41||1:27.47||+1.02s|
|9||27||Alan Jones||Williams-Ford Cosworth||1:32.68||1:27.67||+1.22s|
|10||20||James Hunt||Wolf-Ford Cosworth||1:28.84||1:27.96||+1.51s|
|11||2||Carlos Reutemann||Lotus-Ford Cosworth||1:29.08||1:27.99||+1.54s|
|12||9||Hans-Joachim Stuck||ATS-Ford Cosworth||1:29.89||1:28.22||+1.77s|
|13||1||Mario Andretti||Lotus-Ford Cosworth||1:29.23||1:28.23||+1.78s|
|14||7||John Watson||McLaren-Ford Cosworth||1:28.89||1:28.23||+1.78s|
|15||29||Riccardo Patrese||Arrows-Ford Cosworth||1:29.56||1:28.30||+1.85s|
|16||28||Clay Regazzoni||Williams-Ford Cosworth||1:28.48||1:28.51||+2.03s|
|17||14||Emerson Fittipaldi||Fittipaldi-Ford Cosworth||1:28.49||1:28.97||+2.04s|
|18||6||Nelson Piquet||Brabham-Alfa Romeo||1:29.53||1:28.52||+2.07s|
|DNQ||18||Elio de Angelis||Shadow-Ford Cosworth||1:29.83||1:28.70||+2.25s|
|DNQ||8||Patrick Tambay||McLaren-Ford Cosworth||1:30.68||1:29.53||+3.08s|
|DNQ||17||Jan Lammers||Shadow-Ford Cosworth||1:32.02||1:29.99||+3.54s|
|DNQ||22||Derek Daly||Ensign-Ford Cosworth||1:36.89||1:30.18||+3.73s|
|DNPQ||24||Gianfranco Brancatelli||Merzario-Ford Cosworth||1:38.15|
|WD||31||Héctor Rebaque||Lotus-Ford Cosworth||Withdrawn|
The full results for the 1979 Monaco Grand Prix are outlined below:
- * Depailler and Piquet were both still classified despite retiring as they had completed 90% of the race distance.
- Lotus entered their 250th Grand Prix as a constructor.
- 92nd and final race for James Hunt.
- Jody Scheckter claimed his third and final pole position.
- Ninth career victory for Scheckter.
- This was also the 25th win for a car using #11 as its race number.
- Ferrari claimed their 77th win as both a constructor and engine supplier.
- Patrick Depailler claimed his fourth and final fastest lap.
With seven races down the first of the drop-scores were being applied to the Championship standings, with drivers dropping their three worst results from the first seven rounds, as per the FIA's rules. Regardless of this rule, however, it was Jody Scheckter who led the title hunt, six ahead of Jacques Laffite after the drop scores were applied. The biggest loser as a result of the scoring rule proved to be Carlos Reutemann, whose loss of five points dropped him from a potential second back to fifth behind Laffite, Gilles Villeneuve and Patrick Depailler.
In the International Cup for Constructors the scoring system was far less convoluted, largely due to the fact that both cars could score points for each team. That meant that Ferrari continued to lead the way with half the season gone, leaving Monte Carlo with an eight point advantage over Ligier-Ford Cosworth. Lotus-Ford Cosworth were next, nine further back, while Tyrrell-Ford Cosworth and Williams-Ford Cosworth completed the top five.
Only point scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
Images and Videos:
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 'Monaco GP, 1979', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2015), http://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr320.html, (Accessed 22/11/2018)
- ↑ 'Monaco 1979: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), http://www.statsf1.com/en/1979/monaco/engages.aspx, (Accessed 22/11/2018)
- ↑ Cite error: Invalid
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- ↑ 'Monaco 1979: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), http://www.statsf1.com/en/1979/monaco/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 22/11/2018)
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 'Monaco 1979: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), http://www.statsf1.com/en/1979/monaco/classement.aspx, (Accessed 22/11/2018)
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 7. Monaco 1979', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), http://www.statsf1.com/en/1979/monaco.aspx, (Accessed 22/11/2018)
- ↑ '1979 Monaco GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2015), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=1979&gp=Monaco%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 22/11/2018)
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