Ricciardo looks a good start away from winning Monaco Grand Prix
Qualifying could not have gone any better for Red Bull and in particular Daniel Ricciardo at the Monaco Grand Prix.
The Australian secured his first ever pole after completing his quick lap faster than Mercedes duo Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton, while Red Bull have been rewarded for a bold tyre choice.
Ricciardo used the super-soft tyres during qualifying and was the only one of the top 10 do so, with others on the less durable ultra-soft tyres.
This is likely to be significant because of the wider range of options that the team now has to cover all eventualities during the race.
The big question mark hanging over Monaco is if or when the anticipated rain will fall. Both sets of tyres are at their peak in dry conditions, with drivers transferring to the greater tread of the intermediate or wet tyres once rain starts to fall.
Where Ricciardo has an advantage is that his super-soft tyres are more long lasting, meaning he can profit from longer out on track to consider weather conditions before needing to pit.
This extra ability to wait and see could also prove valuable should a safety car be called into action in Monaco.
The circuit is well known for its twisty nature and lack of straights, which generally makes overtaking more difficult. This could result in some drivers taking extra liberties in the hope of gaining a few places.
But much will ultimately hinge on whether Ricciardo can hold the Mercedes’ at bay in the short run from the start line to the first corner.
If Rosberg can steal the lead, he can use the clean air to potentially move into a lead of a couple of seconds, which in turn may be significant in ensuring he gains good track position following a first pit stop. Track position is arguably the most critical factor in Monaco.
Ricciardo is the 8/11 favourite to secure a fourth career F1 victory by winning the Monaco Grand Prix and it is the luxury of being in a more versatile position which makes this a solid price, given the unknowns heading into race day.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.