Formula One fever

The pinnacle event of the Formula One season will kick off today with practice one at the Monaco Grand Prix circuit.

Perth driver Daniel Ricciardo, from Red Bull Racing, sits fifth in the F1 Championship but is expected to show fast pace in practice.

Producer and co-host of motorsport show Flat Chat Podcast, Jaycie Richards, said the Monaco GP was the race that every driver wanted to win.

It was the most difficult track to navigate and Ricciardo and team-mate Max Verstappen would likely perform well, Richards said.

“Monaco is certainly the crown jewel race in the Formula One calendar [and] many of the [F1] drivers reside in Monaco, so for them it’s a home race,” Richards said.

“Red Bull has the best car set up on the grid, and Monaco is the track where the Red Bull cars’ advantages are most noticeable.

“Ricciardo’s Red Bull car is looking much more competitive this season compared to last, so I expect a great result from him on Sunday.”

Ricciardo achieved his first career pole position at the Monaco circuit in 2016, finishing second for the weekend despite leading the race for the first 33 laps.

“We, and most of Australia, were so disappointed in 2016 when Dan had a massive pit-stop blunder which cost him the race,” Richards said.

“He came into the pits and the team wasn’t ready for him.”

The Monaco GP circuit

Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, who won the race last year, will go into the event as favourite, ahead of current championship leader and Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton.

The race comprises 78 laps of the Monaco street circuit with a race distance of 261km.

TV coverage of the event starts on Sunday at 4.45pm on Foxtel, while practice one will begin at 5pm AWST.