Thursday weather update - little chance of rain 20 May 2004
There hasnt been a wet Monaco Grand Prix since 1996, but though the chances of one this weekend are also slim there could be some rain at times.
The weather yesterday was partly cloudy, and that will be the general theme again today and for the rest of the weekend. However, todays high of 23 degrees Celsius will fall to between 20 and 21 for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and on Friday and Saturday the chance of showers is 40 and 60 percent respectively at this stage.
Though the main circuit remains the same for this years race, there has been some widening of the run-off area at the chicane following Jenson Buttons accident there last year.
The other major change is a new pit lane. For years Monacos has been worryingly narrow. Now it has been totally revamped. Each team will now have a large garage that will enable them to keep their cars there for the duration of the meeting, rather than having to take them back and forth to the paddock (or even the covered multi-storey car park even further away) after each session, and office accommodation for their engineers overhead.
The work has been going on for the past 18 months, together with reprofiling of the Swimming Pool and Rascasse area. Now the pits face the harbour rather than the flats on the main straight, but the timing area and grid remain on the latter. To complement the new work there is a grandstand with the capacity for 6000 spectators opposite the pits.