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Saturday, 26 October 2013

India Pre-Race Analysis

Tyre choice looking crucial

The soft tyre at India this years looks to far less durability than a typical race. There are some fears it will not even last a full lap before starting to lose speed. It is very likely that all those starting on the soft tire will have to pit within five to ten laps. This means Vettel, Rosberg, Hamilton, Massa, Raikkonen, and Hulkenburg will all pit early, probably putting them behind at least Webber, Alonso, Perez and Button.

Beyond mechanical problems only the Red Bull's are competitive for victory, being about 0.7 of a second quicker on either tyre. This puts Webber in a good position to win. After his first stop, Vettel will be slowed down as he then passes Alonso and the two McLarens. By contrast, Webber first pit stop will come much later when the field has spread out, meaning he will probably come out in clear air. Every lap Vettel spends getting past another car will cost him around 0.7 second, so unless he clears them quickly Webber should be able to put a considerable lead on him. It should still be a close fight but Webber's odds of 389/100 (4.89) from Betfair are very good value compared to Vettel's odds of 9/25 (1.36) from Paddy Power.

Under the same logic, Alonso is well placed for a podium, especially since he was quickest behind the Red Bull's in third practise. However, his odds are not brilliant at 5/4 (2.25) from SkyBet. They are better than his competitors but ultimately there is still great uncertainty over how long the tyres will last. Meanwhile, if those starting on the soft tyre are turn out not to be at a huge disadvantage, then many cars are looking competitive for that third podium position, so betting else where is recommended.

Without being able to estimate how long the soft tyre will last, there is much uncertainty over this race. Whilst Alonso has the edge over his rivals for a podium, his odds are not great enough to be worth a gamble. By contrast, Webber and Vettel are both equally well placed or perhaps Webber has the advantage and in this case Webber has far higher odds than Vettel. However, caution must be recommended given the uncertainty over the tyres.

Odds above accurate at Saturday 26th, 22.46 GMT. Click to see live odds.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Japan Pre-Race Analysis

Vettel strongest even from 2nd position

Despite being out qualified by Webber for the first time this season, Vettel is still the favourite at Suzuka this year. Given that Vettel has won the Japanese GP three times before, having been quicker consistently than Webber all year and with Webber relatively weak at race starts, Vettel clearly has the advantage. Perhaps the main danger Vettel faces is a recurrence of the Kers failure during the race. On this basis, his odds of 61/100 (1.61) from SkyBet are too low to be good value. Webber's odds of 9/4 (3.25) from Paddy Power are better but are still not great value for money. Ultimately, there is too much uncertainty over how bad Webber's start will be and how well Vettel's Kers unit will cope so betting elsewhere is advised.

SkyBet and Grosjean's odds of 3/2 (2.50) from Bet 365 for podium finishes are both good value. Starting in 3rd and 4th respectively, they are immediately followed by Massa, Rosberg and Hulkenberg, all of whom are unlikely to pass them. You are therefore gambling against Alonso or Raikkonen being able make up so many places. Whilst both Alonso and Raikkonen are very skilled at making good use of the circumstances, their recent success at ending up on the podium despite starting quite low is partially dependent upon luck – such as the safety car at Korea assisting Raikkonen greatly. The fight between Hamilton and Grosjean will be very interesting but after the Mercedes has failed to take a podium in the last three races whilst have taken three podiums between their drivers in the last three races, Grosjean should have the advantage.

Odds above accurate at Sunday 13th, 01.10 GMT. Click to see live odds.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Korea Pre-Race Analysis

Rain could result in a chaotic race

As usual Vettel is favoured for victory but he faces a greater challenge than usual. His pole time was only two tenths quicker than Hamilton whilst both Vettel and Hamilton looked about equal in free practise. Whilst Vettel should be favourite in a straight race, his odds of 11/25 (1.44) from SkyBet are far too low. Crucially, rain is currently predicted. Whilst typhoon conditions are now unlikely, some rain should still occur during the race. Given the unpredictability this will bring Vettel should definitely be avoided. Hamilton's odds of 4/1 (5.00) from Bet 365 are much better. He has a chance in a dry race but largely you are hoping Hamilton can take advantage of the changing conditions. The odds are good even though you are gambling upon the random factor of weather though live betting is an alternative if you get up early enough. Greater winnings could be had by counting on a chaotic race and going for Alonso, Rosberg or Grosjean for victory though all three would be true gamble. Of those three, Grosjean has the highest odds at 31/1 (32.00) from Betfair whilst he starts in 3rd and the Lotus usually does well at warmer circuits – he might be worth putting a couple of pounds on.

Grosjean's odds for a top six finish of 1/2 (1.50) from Bet 365 are reasonable. Starting 3rd, the only drivers likely to have any chance of passing him are Rosberg, Alonso, Raikkonen and Webber. Grosjean would have to have a very weak race to be passed by Webber who starts in 13th so a top 6 finish is likely.

Odds above accurate at Sunday 6th, 00.11 GMT. Click to see live odds.