With the F1 season shifting gears – and owners – between the last race in Italy and the next in Singapore, it will be interesting to see how, or even if, the sale to Liberty Media upsets the running order for the race. With Mercedes' two lead drivers charging ahead and only six races to go after Singapore, now is the time for the other teams to turn up the heat.
As it currently stands, Mercedes have 2016 in the bag and the champagne won’t be on ice much longer if Lewis Hamilton wins his seventh race. Bookmaker Coral has the Englishman odds-on favourite to breeze through the race and be back in the pit stop for a well-deserved Singapore Sling, offering 5/4.
Hamilton is also keen to reach his 50th career win, to match the record set by Juan Manuel Fangio; after his blunder in Italy, he will have his eyes firmly on the prize this time. Hamilton’s partner in crime, Nico Rosberg, might offer a more attractive bet to punters, garnishing odds of 3/1.
The German already has an extra win over Hamilton and managed to close the gap between himself and his teammate in Monza, after Hamilton’s disastrous start to the race. With only two points in it now, Rosberg must be hoping to take pole position and overtake Hamilton not just on the corners, but on the leader board as well.
Red Bull driver Daniel Ricciardo trails a very distant second to Rosberg in the Formula One standings, with just under 90 points between himself and the Mercedez duo. Coral is teasing that he might prove a worthy challenger, with just slightly higher odds than Rosberg at 10/3.
Ricciardo’s teammate, Max Verstappen, became the youngest ever winner in F1 history when he clinched the Spanish title following a collision between Hamilton and Rosberg. The 18-year-old is currently sixth in the standing, but for someone so young he has shown a mature driving skill; this is possibly why the odds of him winning for him have been slashed to 5/1 each way.
Sebastian Vettel has not been having a great Formula One season and is currently fourth, just ahead of teammate Kimi Raikkonen. Vettel should be looking forward to Singapore, as it was one of the three grand prix he managed to win last year, to take some of the shine off Team Mercedes. The German would be a solid each way bet, attracting odds of 8/1.
His Finnish partner is not faring so well at the bookmakers, however, with outside odds of just 18/1. The 36-year-old, dubbed “The Iceman”, has shown that he still has a lot of racing left in him, managing four podium finishes, including second place behind Verstappen during a nail-biting Spanish finale, and the Bahrain GP.
If one team has had a disappointing season, it’s McLaren. It started in the worst possible way, with Fernando Alonso involved in a near-fatal crash in the first race of the season: the Australian GP. A collapsed lung and rib fractures caused him to miss Bahrain completely. He returned for Shanghai, but only managed to finish twelfth.
Since then he has finished within the first ten a total of four times, but otherwise his appearance has been lacklustre, hampered by that terrifying start. Despite his difficulties, Alonso is sitting eleventh, while his teammate, Britain’s own Jenson Button, is even further down the ladder in fifteenth. After a disappointing display from both in Monza, where they came 14 and 12 respectively, and a handful of early retirements splashed between the pair, now feels like the right time for them to chase more points.
While they know they cannot catch Mercedes, they could still overtake Ferrari. Add to this a series of upgrades to the McLaren Honda cars and they may yet prove worthy of a small punt, especially as both drivers are attracting huge odds of 100/1 either way. If you think you know who is going to go full-throttle and work a successful wheel strategy, visit Coral Sports today! If you join now, the bookmaker is offering a £20 free bet!