It’s hard to beat the French Riviera in late May, but add in expensive cars whipping around the streets of Monaco and you’ve got an irreplaceable weekend. Grand Prix de Monaco is the premier Formula One race, luring famous faces (like George Clooney and Elizabeth Hurley) to one of the most glamorous destinations on the Mediterranean. As adrenaline pumping as you can imagine it is to race in Grand Prix de Monaco, it’s almost as exciting to watch.
It may be a short circuit — it covers just 160 miles rather than the usual 190 — but Monaco is arguably the most challenging race on the Formula One calendar. Hairpin turns, tunnels and quick corners separate the good from the best in a race that leaves no room for error.
Formula One includes the fastest circuit-racing cars in the world, whizzing by at speeds up to 220 mph, and those lucky enough to race in Monaco are no exception. As far as 2012 Monaco champ Mark Webber, F1 points leader Sebastian Vettel and the other drivers go, this is the one race where it’s important to position yourself close to the starting line, as it’s very difficult to overtake drivers along the course.
Unlike the other Formula One races, the first practice day in Monaco is on May 23, while May 24 is generally a resting day. For visitors, this works out in your favor — you don’t have to worry about missing any action while you explore all that this ritzy seaside city-state has to offer. On May 25, there’s the third and final practice round before the qualifying race that afternoon. The big event that everyone is revving to see takes place on May 26 at 2 p.m. local time.
Photos courtesy of Monaco Press Centre Photos