(CNN) — Famed for being the most glamorous race on the Formula One circuit, the Monaco Grand Prix has a treasured place in the hearts of many F1 drivers.
As the victorious Daniel Ricciardo swigged from a champagne bottle on the podium Sunday, the Australian’s joy at winning on the famed winding streets of the Mediterranean principality was clear for all to see.
But after this year’s race in Monte Carlo some drivers were left far from satisfied.
Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso described it as “probably the most boring race ever,” while reigning champion Lewis Hamilton said the 78-lap race was “intensely boring.”
‘This is very disappointing’
Drivers were racing relatively slowly in a bid to manage their “hyper-soft” and “ultra-soft” tyres, making sure that they only had to do one pit stop on a track where it is notoriously difficult to overtake.
Teams did not want to do multiple pit stops as it would have meant dropping behind other, slower cars, which they would not be able to pass no matter how much faster their car.
For the first time since 2009 the race had no need for a safety car, which leads the cars around at reduced speed while debris or other obstructions are removed. It has the effect of allowing the field to catch up with the leader, which leads to renewed racing when the safety car peels off.
“Extremely boring,” Alonso, who retired with a gearbox problem, told reporters.
“Without a safety car, without yellow flags, the sport needs to think a little bit about the show because this is very disappointing.
“Probably the most boring race ever in Formula One.
“We probably need to give something to the fans at the end of the race just to pay the ticket back a little.”
Hamilton, a four-time world champion and the current leader in the drivers’ standings, was equally scathing, saying “it wasn’t really racing.”
“We were just cruising around from lap six, literally cruising,” the Englishman, who finished third, told reporters. “If that was exciting for you to watch, no problem.”
Later speaking to the BBC, he described the GP as “intensely boring.”
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen said the outcome of the Monaco GP was dictated by qualifying.
“There needs to be quite a massive mistake to get past,” the Finn told reporters.
“We ended up driving 70-odd laps just around, finishing the race. Not the most exciting, that’s for sure.”
Organizers for the race have yet to resposnd to CNN’s request for comment.
Redemption for Ricciardo
Ricciardo, who qualified in pole position, beat Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel by just 7.3 seconds despite being restricted to using just six of his eight gears because of a mechanical problem.
It was the Red Bull driver’s first win in Monte Carlo and made up for his 2016 heartbreak when a late pit-stop error cost him certain victory.
“It was two years in the making and I really feel that redemption has arrived,” Ricciardo said after taking the checkered flag.
“After the loss of power I thought the race was done, but I got home using just six gears.”
The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2019 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.