• Monaco Grand Prix 1958

Trintignant wins on home soil

Martin Williamson May 18, 1958
Roy Salvadori leads the pack in his Cooper-Climax 12, followed by Jean Behra © Getty Images

The absentee British teams - BRM and Vanwall - returned for the Monaco Grand Prix but veteran Frenchman Maurice Trintignant delighted the home crowd with his second win in four years. Ironically, while Stirling Moss was back in a Vanwall, Trintignant drove a Rob Walker-entered Cooper-Climax, the kind Moss had driven to victory in Argentina.

Thirty-one cars entered the race but only 16 qualified - among those who did not was a youthful Bernie Ecclestone in a private and very old Connaught.

Another local, Jean Behra in a BRM, made the early pace but encountered brake problems allowing Mike Hawthorn and Moss to go head-to-head. Hawthorn's fuel pump gave up in the tunnel shortly after Moss encountered problems in the valve gear of the Vanwall's Norton motorcycle-derived engine.

Trintignant found himself in a commanding lead in a little Cooper well suited to the twisty circuit. The fact it had a 2-litre engine against rivals who almost all had 2.5-litre versions was no disadvantage. The pack of Ferraris chased hard once Hawthorn retired but had left far too much of a gap.

It proved a wretched day for British manufacturers Vanwall and BRM. Only one of their six entries even made it past the halfway point, and even then Harry Schell was nine laps behind Trintignant at the finish.