Pole-sitter Charles Leclerc was a shock last-minute withdrawal from the Monaco Grand Prix as Ferrari announced a problem with his car. With Leclerc, who had damaged his car in a crash at the end of Saturday qualifying, out and his front-row spot vacant, Max Verstappen for Red Bull was left leading the grid for this fifth leg of the Formula One season. For Leclerc it was a cruel end to his dream of winning his home grand prix.
News that his car would not be leaving the pits came as the 1300GMT start time approached.
It was all the more unexpected as an hour earlier Ferrari had announced repairs had been carried out without a change of gearbox which would have incurred a five-grid penalty.
“Charles will not start the race due to an issue with the left driveshaft which is impossible to fix in time for the start of the race," Ferrari explained.