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Nic Ladds 23rd May 2009 - 18:39

Brawn sandwich?

That's exactly how Ferrari's Kimi Räikkönen will be feeling after his P2 qualification in Monaco lands the Finn directly between favourite Jenson Button in Pole Position and third placed birthday boy Rubens Barrichello.

As the Championship leader -who was the 3/1 favourite to clock the best time - saved his best until last and dramatically steamed over the line in the final qualifying session to steal the number 1 spot, Kimi Raikkonen was relegated to P2.

Birthday boy and Monaco resident Rubens Barrichello, 37 years young on Saturday - claimed the third spot on the grid.

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel thrilled his 5/1 qualification backers as he was still out and flying as Button celebrated his last-gasp Pole, the danger of being pushed back still present for the Brit, but Vettel's time wasn't good enough and the German had to be content with fourth.View image detail

Vettel can be backed at 11/1 for the Monaco victory.

The Monaco Saturday session was always going to be an important one, as only once in the last 23 years has a driver not starting in the top three on the grid, gone on to win on race day.

And this must have been on the minds of all involved as the usual out-lap, flying-lap, in-lap qualifying strategy was altered in favour of the drivers staying out for as many as three flying laps in succession, believing that the super-soft's were starting to come to life after some usage.

The betting for the Monaco Grand Prix resembles the grid and rightly so.

Jenson Button is the odds-on favourite at 4/7 in the betting to take the win in Monaco - BrawnGP priced at 4/9 to be the winning constructor, ahead of Kimi Raikkonen who could be real value at a 7/2 punt.

Rubens Barrichello who starts from third on the grid is priced at 9/1.

It looks like nothing else but another Jensen Button win this weekend in Monaco, provided the carnage which usually happens at Monaco doesn't affect Brawn's main man.

The second of the Ferrari's, belonging to Felipe Massa managed a third session time of 1m15.340 which was quick enough to gain P5 giving the future budget-capped red cars hope of more points towards their comparatively struggling season campaign.

So far, it's a positive weekend for the Ferrari boys despite Massa randomly sliding into the Armco in the first qualifying session.

The Ferrari team managed to calm Massa down and both drivers are now capable, and appear to have the cars to do the job.

Both Ferrari's qualified in the top five (and can be backed at a healthy 9/4 to be the winning constructor) and although Massa may be out of touching distance of a race win, his price of 6/5 in William Hill's 'Dark Horses' market looks the bet to provide returns, provided Monaco specialist Mark Webber who qualified in eighth keeps remains out of the picture.

The Aussie may not and at 4/1 to win this group, this Red Bull could rampage to the top of this list.View image detail

The 'middle of the road' group has Kazuki Nakajima as the favourite at 2/1, 6/4 to grab a points finish.

As long as the Japanese driver can make it through the race, this should be backed as he was showing fantastic pace through the qualification stages.  

McLaren and Lewis Hamilton fans saw an increasingly unhappy figure walking back to the pits in the first session after slamming the rear end of his McLaren into the barriers, severely damaging his suspension.

At this point, with eight minutes remaining of the first qualification session, the stewards brought out the red flags whilst pieces of the McLaren's carbon fibre body were collected from the city street course.

Any hopes Lewis had of a famous Monaco victory can now be well and truly put to bed for the season, as Hamilton will start from the 16th spot on the grid of a course where overtaking is limited, if not impossible.

Fancy Hamilton to grab some points this weekend? 11/10 isn't all that bad considering he was - before his crash - on good form and feeling confident.

All Hamilton could muster was an apology and best wishes to team-mate Heikki Kovalainen for a good weekend.Hamilton walks back to the pits in Monaco

"I just don't know what I was thinking," said Hamilton: "I made a mistake. It's a mistake and I made it. It's a shame because the weekend had been going so well - I just want to apologise to the team for wasting their time."

McLaren-Mercedes team-mate Heikki Kovalainen's time of 1:15.516 places the Finn in seventh for the start of tomorrow's Monaco Grand Prix, one grid position behind Williams-Toyota's Nico Rosberg.

It was all smiles over in the Force India garage as the team who usually prop up the grid had both cars through to the second Saturday session for the first time this season.

Giancarlo Fisichella will start the Monaco race in P13, with team-mate Adrian Sutil right up Fisi's gearbox in 15th position.

To highlight just how slight the margin between the drivers is on the grid, and what makes for a good lap, the quickest eight drivers across the line in Saturday's action had a gap of less than one second between them.

  • Race Winner
  • Podium Finish
  • Points Finish
  • Fastest lap of the race
  • First Retirement Of Race
  • Winning Constructor
  • Group Betting - Race
  • Race Specials
  • As always, William Hill will be providing customers with our betlive service for the Monaco Grand Prix, where prices will be updated as the action happens, so sit back and enjoy what is, the Jewel in the Formula 1 crown with all the latest betting odds provided by William Hill Online.


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