• Daniel Ricciardo threw down gauntlet with stunning pole position lap
  • Red Bull driver starts in front of Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton
  • Round six of the Formula One world championship takes place at Monaco
  • Monte Carlo circuit hit with wet weather on morning of the grand prix 
  • Click here for all the latest F1 news, features and points tables 

Dan Ripley for MailOnline

On no other race track is pole position more sacred than Monte Carlo and it’s where Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo starts the Monaco Grand Prix after beating both Mercedes in qualifying.

The Australian took advantage of fuel pressure issues in the Silver Arrows, setting a blistering lap which puts him in prime position to win his first race in nearly two years.

Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg will be keen to hunt down the Red Bull star in the sixth round of the championship, where weather forecasts predict thunderstorms during the GP in what promises to be a thrilling race around the principality. Follow all the action with Sportsmail.

  • Dan Ripley

    Host commentator

Most would have loved for the sun to shine but credit to the likes of Louis Tomlinson, who admits not being a huge F1 fan, and Leicester boss Claudio Ranieri who have braved the weather to make the grid.

Louis Tomlinson of One Direction was on the grid prior to the grand prix

Leicester City manager Claudio Ranieri was also present on the Formula One grid

Most drivers have emerged from the pit-lane with the blue rimmed full wet tyre, Haas have gambled by trying the intermediate tyre.

If this race starts under the safety car, ALL drivers have to start on the full wet tyre – and it’s a call the race director Charlie Whiting hasn’t ruled out…

Team principal of the Ferrari Maurizio Arrivabene looks on in the pits at the Monaco street circuit

‘Hamilton – on the drivers’ parade shows no respect to the people who have paid a lot of money to see him race. This is why people have issues with him, he’s an a**, pure and simple.’ TheHardTruth622, Cambridgeshire

To be fair to Hamilton, although he does cut a rather miserable figure at times and was isolated from the other drivers on the parade, he does embrace his support.

Down at Loews hairpin, he did make a point of picking out a kid’s charity and waving to the children on it during his interview with Sky Sports. I would name the charity but I’ve sadly forgotten it.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain waits for the start of the drivers’ parade

Hamilton reacts as he stands on a truck waiting for the parade

It has been spitting but those drops on the track are getting slightly heavier, although not heavy enough for a safety car start I would imagine.

Either way no use for the slick tyres – at least from the start. They could prove a factor late on though…

Drivers wave to the crowd during the drivers’ track parade before the race

Then you’re out of luck. Mind you raining or not there are much worse places to be than Monaco as the Arsenal forward looks around the paddock on race day.

Arsenal forward Theo Walcott is shown around the pit lane in the Monte Carlo paddock

Red Bull will continue to use Renault engines for the 2017 and 2018 seasons.

Their relationship with the French manufacturer looked set to cease at the end of last year, but the former world champions will be backed by Renault – badged as TAG Heuer – for at least two more campaigns.

Red Bull’s junior team Toro Rosso, powered by Ferrari this season, will also revert to Renault until the end of 2018.

Click here for more

Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jr (left) shares a discussion with Red Bull Max Verstappen ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix

‘Raining here. Thunder and lightning earlier. Now just drops. Should enliven the race.

‘I’m at McLaren. Busier than yesterday but still not as rammed at previous editions of this grand prix – though they are a long way down the paddock now, the order being dictated by last season’s championship position.

‘‎Flavio Briatore’s face-lift is hiding under a grey beard.’

McLaren’s Fernando Alonso arrives for the track parade at a wet Monaco Grand Prix

Speaking of Verstappen, make sure you check out Sportsmail’s Jon McEvoy and his interview with the 18-year-old prior to the weekend.

It’s worth noting that Ricciardo is likely to be faster today, as he is racing the improved Renault power unit. One has been distributed to all Renault powered teams.

Click here for more

It’s been a horrible weekend already for young Verstappen who has been brought down to earth following his stunning win in Spain last time out.

A crash in quali means he starts from the back row and now he faces a rush to get to the grid after his front left wheel fused on.

Verstappen’s mechanics tried to hammer it off again but to no avail, and now a rather simple job is going to take about 45 minutes.

Max Verstappen crashes his Red Bull during qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix

Ok it’s not quite that wet but if we get another downpour before the race, a possibility, this race could start behind the safety car.

JONATHAN McEVOY: Lewis Hamilton chucked and charged his Mercedes between the barriers in one last desperate bid for pole. But it was not quite enough on the afternoon Daniel Ricciardo set the fastest time Monaco’s streets have ever staged.

At the end of the on-track drama, the expression on Ricciardo’s face — always inclined to a Colgate-advert smile — was in direct contrast to Hamilton’s miserable countenance.

The Brit, who was third quickest and a place behind his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg, does not wear adversity lightly and his mood could not be hidden by the sunglasses he resolutely kept on for the cameras.

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On the driver’s track parade, Lewis Hamilton took a solitary position at the front of the truck, but told Sky Sports’ Johnny Herbert he is just relaxing and looking forward to the race.

Hamilton said: ‘I’m in a great mood I’m in Monaco where I live, I’m just chilled. Don’t listen to the noise you hear elsewhere.’

I can’t say I’m convinced – he does cut a frustrated figure – but I’ll say this, my money is on the world champion to win this.

Lewis is brilliant in the wet and confidence will be key. He may not have won this year but he has been quick and I see no reason why he can’t at the very least be the fastest driver on the track.

This race has so much potential. The Mercedes have been muscled off pole by Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull – and that in itself sets up a spectacle as the Silver Arrows (Lewis Hamilton behind Nico Rosberg) attempt to chase down the Australian.

But then you factor in the weather, it’s raining in Monaco – and a track already notoriously difficult to navigate has thrown in another challenge…

Good morning all, welcome to Sportsmail’s coverage of the Monaco Grand Prix.

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton arrives in Monaco on race day prior to the grand prix

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