Marcus Armstrong says he spent 29 of the 30 laps in yesterday’s Formula 2 race in Monaco eyeing up his sensational last lap overtake on Jehan Daruvala.
The Kiwi squeezed himself into a closing gap at La Rascasse, muscling his way ahead of Daruvala to steal tenth place.
By securing tenth, Armstrong now starts on pole position for the second race of the weekend later today.
Doing so gives Armstrong the best opportunity to snare a victory and rejuvenate his championship ambitions.
He will start alongside Liam Lawson in an all-New Zealand front row; at Monaco no less.
“You could argue that you can still win the race from P11 in most places, but in Monaco that’s simply impossible,” said Armstrong.
“I think that it was a really important move and I needed to do it because it changes our weekend.
“I was lining that up for the entire race, exactly 29 laps, and then the opportunity presented itself on the final lap.”
The Monaco street circuit is notoriously difficult to overtake around.
It is also a circuit Armstrong had never raced on before, meaning he came into the weekend blind.
However, he says he calculated the risk involved with the last-gasp overtake.
“There is always a risk involved,” he said.
“But I know that Jehan is a smart driver, and he’s not going to destroy both of our races.
“I went for the gap, even though it was very small, and it paid off.”
Looking ahead to today’s sprint race, Armstrong believes keeping his tyres in check will give him the best opportunity to win the race.
“If we have a good start, then it is all about finding a rhythm.
“It will be very difficult because you have to stay extremely focused throughout the entire race, especially with the Pirellis.
“When they start to degrade slightly and overheat, it starts to feel like wrestling an alligator around the streets of Monaco, so I have to stay very focused.”