Monaco Grand Prix: we spent the afternoon with those who try to see Formula 1 for free

Monaco Grand Prix: we spent the afternoon with those who try to see Formula 1 for free
Monaco Grand Prix: we spent the afternoon with those who try to see Formula 1 for free

Not everyone has the chance to have their place in the sun in the stands or in the shade, on the pontoon of a yacht, during this Grand Prix weekend in Monaco. Crossed at the beginning of the afternoon, this Saturday, May 25, near the princely palace, Arthur and Philibert are among them.

On the Rock, you have to pay

A few minutes before the start of the Formula 2 sprint race, the first, from Nice, hoped to repeat the feat of the Historic GP, a fortnight earlier. Either position yourself on the Rock, in the shade of the trees and enjoy a bird’s eye view over a large part of the circuit.

On the way up to the palace, metal panels have been installed, but not enough to cool some of them, who stay there for a few seconds before being dislodged. Photo Pierre Peyret.

Unfortunately for him and his friend, to whom he wanted to introduce the charms of Formula 1, they will have to go through the ticketing box: 70 euros. “I thought it was going to do it”, he breathes, a little disillusioned. At dessert time, it’s rather grimacing soup. Especially since the duo crossed a good part of the Principality, after a first failure on Boulevard de Suisse. “There is a spot on the stairs, but it was shielded”concludes Philibert.

The informal platform of the Gaumates staircase

Boulevard de Suisse, more precisely Escalier des Gaumates, indeed, it is armored. On a dozen steps, almostaround sixty people crowd together, forming an informal forum. The most confidential and cheapest in Monaco, certainly, but also the one offering the briefest visual experience. In this case, around a hundred meters of track along the swimming pool, swallowed up in a few tenths of a second by the cars at the time of the Formula 1 qualifying session.

If he has a place in the stands for Sunday, to take full advantage of the experience, Simon, 20 years old, did not hesitate to come and spot from Thursday the place and find these few steps.

It’s not easy, but yes, you can see the track from the Gaumettes staircase. Photo Pierre Peyret.

In the shade of these stairs, others preferred to stand in the sun exotic garden boulevard, a stone’s throw from Monaco train station. Whether after spotting the spot on TikTok or after following the advice of the receptionist at a hotel in Antibes, like this trio of friends from Reims on vacation on the Côte d’Azur.

The exotic garden boulevard, the most popular spot

“We didn’t plan to come but we did well”, enthuses Jean, 23 years old. For those who are crammed with dozens and dozens of people on a sidewalk a meter wide, with the road and cars brushing close to them, do not seem to cool them down. “On one side, we have the Formula 1 cars and on the other, pretty cars passing by.”

Below this free spot, the most popular in Monaco at Grand Prix time, there is a good part of the route going from the Sainte-Dévote bend to the Rascasse bend. Several hundred meters away all the same. Result, the most foresighted took out the binoculars of the grandfather.

The exotic garden boulevard offers the best view point on part of the circuit. Photo Pierre Peyret.

“Clearly, even if it only lasts a few seconds and we don’t see the details, it’s worth the move. It’s great, especially when it’s free.”, estimates José, a young Colombian student in Montpellier and expressly passing through the Côte d’Azur. Baptiste, present with a friend, appears less enthusiastic. Last year, he tasted the charms of the stands and the comparison is no match. “Next year, we will take places again.”



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