F1: Taking it east

Lewis hamilton will go gunning for glory in today's Monaco Grand Prix if given the chance - but he will not take risks.

Lewis hamilton will go gunning for glory in today's Monaco Grand Prix if given the chance - but he will not take risks.

Hamilton will start second on the Monte Carlo grid behind McLaren team-mate Fernando Alonso, with the Woking marque locking out the front row for the first time since the Belgian Grand Prix in 2005.

The reigning world champion snatched pole from the current leader of the drivers' standings in the dying seconds, with the latter's own final flying lap ruined by Mark Webber.

As for title rivals Ferrari, Felipe Massa, who has started on pole in the last three races and won the last two, is third, with Kimi Raikkonen down in 15th.

The Finn clipped a barrier in Q2 as he exited the swimming pool complex, damaging the front-right wishbone of his car, leaving his mechanics with virtually no time to execute repairs.

The fact Ferrari have not won at this track since 2001 is unlikely to alter today if McLaren continue to enjoy the perfect weekend.

Much though, will depend on Hamilton and Alonso, and the run down to the first corner of Sainte Devote once the race starts.

Team principal Ron Dennis maintains he "will not have to tell them anything," as he feels he should "not to have to instruct them how to perform the first lap of a grand prix."

He added: "They are very switched-on, focused individuals and they know what to do."

If that is the case, it will then come down to who makes the best start, and Hamilton has so far proven himself to be aggressive off the grid.

The 22-year-old said: "If I get a good start and it looks like I can pass, then I will."

But he knows he cannot be as attack-minded as he has previously, adding: "I won't do anything silly to risk pushing both of us out of the race.

"It's a long race, and I feel we can come away with a one-two, so it's important we go into it (the first corner) and be sensible.

"We're both professional, we respect each other, we're team-mates and we want to do a good job for the team.

"We also want to win, but we'll go into that first corner probably not as aggressively as we would if we were going into it with a Ferrari."

Behind Massa is Giancarlo Fisichella for Renault in fourth, with the Williams of Nico Rosberg fifth and Mark Webber's Red Bull sixth, followed by the Saubers of Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica.

Rubens Barrichello and Jenson Button are a season-high ninth and 10th for Honda, while David Coulthard's in 13th

Journalists

David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer