Heikki Kovalainen set a little bit of history at Monaco, becoming the first team-mate of Jarno Trulli to out-qualify the renowned qualifying specialist on the streets of Monaco.

Trulli’s previous unbroken record spanned Heikki Kovalainen spinssince his debut season in 1997, but the Finn pushed himself to the limit – and occasionally beyond – in his efforts to outmuscle his team-mate, in addition to giving Lotus its first realistic dry-weather opportunity to make it into the second stage of qualifying in its return season.

Heikki spun twice in Q1 en route to being placed as the fastest of the rookie teams’ drivers.

"Yes the second [spin] was a bit out of control, to be honest, but it was a strategic call and I decided to go for it," laughed Heikki after his 180-degree loops at Mirabeau (pictured) and Loews.

"I saw the gap to Kobayashi was 0.9s and knew that two- or three-tenths from track evolution would not be enough, so I decided to go for it and was just out of control – I was all over the place on the second run!

"I didn’t hit the wall, so it was fine. I felt very comfortable to push the car and we haven’t made many changes, so we’re going in the right direction…I thought, ‘I’m not going play safe now, I’m going to go for it!’ – it didn’t work out today but we’re in a good position."

Anyone care to bet on a possible points’ finish for Lotus if the race gets crazy enough?

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.