- May 21 down the years
Fangio dodges waves to win in MonacoWhat happened on this day in Formula One history?
The second Formula One world championship event took place in Monaco and was won by Juan Manuel Fangio. Windy conditions meant waves and spray from the harbour made the Tabac corner incredibly slippery and nine cars crashed out in a pileup on the first lap. Fangio avoided the carnage in his Alfa Romeo and won the 100 lap race by over a lap from Alberto Ascari's Ferrari. Meanwhile, Luigi Villoresi provided the excitement, stalling at the start and fighting his way back to second place before retiring with a mechanical problem.
Mario Andretti headed a dominant Lotus one-two victory at the Belgian Grand Prix, typical of the 1978 season. Andretti had led from the start with Gilles Villeneuve in second place, after a number of cars tangled with each other trying to avoid the slow-starting Carlos Reutemann. Villeneuve held the place ahead of the second Lotus of Ronnie Peterson until a front-left puncture forced him to pit and dropped him down the order. From that point onwards it was Lotus's day with the Ferraris of Reutemann and Villeneuve finishing third and fourth.
Ferrari's Michael Schumacher won a wet European Grand Prix ahead of Mika Hakkinen's McLaren, after a race-long scrap between the two title favourites. Off the line the pair banged wheels but it was Hakkinen who took the advantage into the first corner. Then came the rain and Hakkinen was soon struggling to control his car while Schumacher remained perfectly in control. Schumacher overtook entering the final chicane and, making better use of slick tyres on a slippery surface, pulled out a lead. It wasn't long before the whole field had to pit for wet tyres, but Schumacher held onto first place, and set about extending his gap over Hakkinen as he rejoined. From that point onwards the order didn't change, and despite Hakkinen getting within five seconds of him at one point, Schumacher went on to take his first Ferrari victory in Germany.
Jacques Villeneuve said Juan Pablo Montoya could have killed him after a three car pileup during Saturday's free practice session. Montoya brake tested Ralf Schumacher after he felt the Toyota driver had held him up on the previous lap, but the subsequent drop in speed going up the hill out of Saint Devote caused an unsighted Villeneuve to plough into the back of David Coulthard and Schumacher. Villeneuve said Montoya's behaviour was out of order: "How serious could it have been? It could have been me and a few people in the hotel dead. I'm just lucky I hit David's gearbox instead of hitting his rear wheel. If not I would have taken off like in Australia a few years ago [when an accident Villeneuve was involved in killed a marshal] ... it was extremely, extremely dangerous."