Nothing about the Monaco Grand Prix is what you might term ‘normal’. Since the first running in 1929 - long before the inauguration of the Formula One World Championship in 1950 - there’s been a ‘magic’ attributed to this race that’s more broadly documented than almost any other event in world sport.
It’s not without good reason. The impossibly unattainable (to the mere mortals amongst us, anyway) marina lifestyle; the spectacular Riviera backdrop; the perils of threading a car between those imposing barriers... it’s a special event, in every way. Far from normal, certainly.
But then, in a world where boundaries are pushed every day, what is ‘normal’? Hurtling through narrow streets at 300 km/h? Completely normal. Subjecting the human body to multiple times its own weight in gravitational force? That’s normal too. Pulling all-nighters in a cramped engineering room, just to find one thousandth of a second on track the next morning? Totally the norm.
The F1 paddock is full of extraordinary people doing extraordinary things. Likewise the numerous team factory sites dotted across the UK, Italy, France, Switzerland, Japan, the USA and beyond. From drivers and engineers to mechanics and truckies, hospitality crews and event makers to journalists and broadcasters. None of these people arrived in the sport by accident. They’re all... well, abnormal. And we wager none of them would argue with that term.