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Latest F1 Betting News

Two major car manufacturers are contemplating their future in F1.

Volkswagen are considering joining F1 in 2015 reports Total F1. They would form a partnership with Sauber. It is unclear if the Sauber name would remain, with the team possibly known as Volkswagen or Volkswagen Sauber. With a couple of podiums this year and clearly being a fast car, Sauber are team with good potential and would be a good investment. Volkswagen have denied the rumours reports One Stop Strategy but with the Sauber team boss recently meeting Volkswagen's chairmen it looks likely that the plan is being considered.

Mercedes are contemplating leaving F1 reports Planet F1. Brawn GP had just won the championship when Mercedes got involved so the car company expected the success to continue. With only a single race win since, the team has been less successful than desired and the car company may no longer wish to foot the bill. If the plan goes ahead the team would continue to be run by Ross Brawn and Mercedes will continue to supply engines to F1.

Image © taka_suzuki

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Hungary Post-Race Analysis

After a very long wait Hamilton takes another victory.

Race Results
1st
Hamilton
2nd
Raikkonen
3rd
Grosjean
4th
Vettel
5th
Alonso
6th
Button
7th
Senna
8th
Webber
9th
Massa
10th
Rosberg
11th
Hulkenberg
12th
di Resta
13th
Maldonado
14th
Perez
15th
Ricciardo
16th
Vergne
17th
Kovalainen
18th
Kobayashi
It certainly was not one of Hamilton's easier race wins, with the Lotuses looking like they had the pace to challenge for the win throughout the race. The narrow track of the Hungaroring certain helped keep the Lotus's at bay but Hamilton's mature drive may have equally ensured victory. Rather than his usual aggression, Hamilton drove carefully to make the tires last, so much so that he was putting in faster lap times than Raikkonen in the final few laps despite being on older tires. It bodes well for his championship chances if Hamilton can drive with this type of control for the rest of the season.

ButtonLotus had a tremendous race, showing incredible pace and good strategic decisions. They have been close to winning a couple of times this year and Hungary is their closest yet, so a victory this season looks likely. It's worth noting that the Lotus performs better in warm weather and Hungary was the warmest race this year. Success at other hight temperature track is likely but they will not have that pace at every future race. Hopefully from now on both Lotus drivers will join Vettel, Webber, Hamilton, Button and Alonso as the realistic contenders for victory. 2012 looks likely to continue to be the most diverse in F1 history.

Another race has gone and still no one is challenging Alonso's championship lead. Alonso's 5th position finally breaks his incredible run since Valencia of two wins and a 2nd place. However, his closest rivals, the two Red Bulls, finished in similar positions to Alonso. Instead of decreasing his lead, Hungary meant Hamilton and Raikkonen have now almost caught the Red Bull drivers. With four drivers now taking points from one another, the championship looks like Alonso's to lose. His competitor's only hope is that Ferrari is still lacking pace after the summer break.

Image © nic_r

Next race weekend 31st August to 2nd September. Click to see live odds for Belgium.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Bottas Looks For Place At Williams

Williams reserve driver Valtteri Bottas hopes for a long career with the team reports Sky Sports. Bottas is backed by the new executive director so a race position next year is likely. As their reserve driver he often takes part in free practise 1 and has beaten Maldonado's time in over half the practice sessions. His time at Hungary was only 1.3 seconds off Hamilton's reports ESPN.

It is unclear who Bottas would replace. Maldonado and Senna have had extremely different seasons but currently are fairly equal on points. Maldonado won Spain but has not scored a single point in the six races since. Maldonado needs to reassess his approach to F1 if he wants a team to adopt him long term but Maldonado thinks his mistakes are normal reports Planet F1. By contrast, Senna has scored points in four more races this season than Maldonado and Frank Williams feels Senna came of age after a good race in Hungary reports Planet F1.

The Williams car is quite capable this year but they have not delivered the results they deserve regularly so bringing in a new driver is a good move. Maldonado should get the second half of 2012 to prove he can race more carefully but otherwise Senna looks like a safer long term driver for the seat. Interestingly, Barrichello - who was dropped by Williams this season - feels that Williams would be better off with himself back in the team reports Motor Sports.

Image © nic_r

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

London GP Still Possible

Bernie Ecclestone has continued to promote his plans for a London GP, reports Sky Sports. The idea was first mooted a few weeks ago and generally met with scepticism.

There are currently two plans for a London GP. Eccelstone is promoting a night time street circuit, passing Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliment, Wellington Memorial and Embankement along the Thames ( see Daily Mail for a large map). An alternative independent bid hopes to race through and around the newly built Olympic stadium. Eccelstone has not endorsed the Olympic stadium bid and prefers his own central London plan, reports ESPN .

In principle the race would be great. Watch a simulated lap on Youtube and watch Hamilton and Button describe a lap on Youtube. Spectators would have an excellent view whilst the race would arguably be the most scenic race in F1 history.

There would be many problems. A section of central London would have to shut down for Friday, Saturday and Sunday plus days for setting up and taking down. The only other street circuit of comparable logistical difficulties is Singapore and London would have to emulate their super efficient ability to install and remove an F1 track quickly. The section of the track that goes under Admiralty Arch looks unrealistic. The historical building forms a highly dangerous single lane section and will cause many accidents around the protected building. It is questionable if another street circuit is desired, with four on the calendar and New Jersey scheduled for 2013 (although the London GP looks more interesting than Vettel driving the New Jersey circuit on Youtube). Finally, wet races in London would more common than in any of other current street circuits, making for interesting races but possibly ones with very few cars finishing.

Despite all these difficulties, it may go ahead because it is estimated to make a profit of between £300 million and £100 million whereas may race courses today have huge financial difficulties.

Image © jtstewart

Sunday, 5 August 2012

Hungary Pre-Race Analysis

Hamilton completely dominated qualifying at the Hungaroring.

Qualifying Results
Starting Position
1st
Hamilton
2nd
Grosjean
3rd
Vettel
4th
Button
5th
Raikkonen
6th
Alonso
6th
Massa
8th
Maldonado
9th
Senna
10th
Hulkenberg
11th
Webber
12th
di Resta
13th
Rosberg
14th
Perez
15th
Kobayashi
16th
Vergne
17th
Schumacher
18th
Ricciardo
Hamilton looks by far strongest for victory and the odds reflect this at 91/100 (1.91) from 888sport. He was quickest in each session of qualifying and twice in free practice. Only two things might unsettle Hamilton. Hungary is a difficult course to pass on and Grosjean is often quick on the start. Also, light rain is predicted, with Hamilton good but not strongest in the rain.

With the race victories at Hungary coming from anywhere in the top four, Button is a strong contender if the rain is heavy. 11/1 (12.00) from Bet 365 are good odds. Button looks good for an outside bet.

Vettel has unusually high odds at 9/2 (5.50) from 888sport. However, he looks to lack the pace of Hamilton, the track is difficult to pass on and Vettel is not especially strong in the rain. However, any driver with those odds are reasonable value for money from 3rd place and especially so for Vettel.

The big unknown is Grosjean. Generally, he finishes higher than he qualifies yet his best finishing position is only 3rd. However, he seems slow in the rain in his few wet races so far and the Lotus usually only becomes competitive in the second half of the race. Grosjean is currently 15/2 (8.50) from Bet 365 but is one for live betting.

Image © nic_r

Odds above accurate at Saturday 28th, 14.40 GMT. Click to see live odds.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Ferrari Seeks New Driver

Ferrari have strongly hinted that they intend to replace Massa for 2013 and many drivers are being considered for his seat. Massa has under-performed since his 2009 accident in Hungary. He is currently 14th in the championship, 139 points down on Alonso. Although Sky Sports report he is not thinking about contracts, Massa being replaced is both likely and sensible.

Ferrari are believed to give Alonso a veto over team mates, ruling out Vettel or Hamilton. Team Principle Stefano Domenicali has stated that Ferrari is only on the market for a number two driver, reports One Stop Strategy. Webber and Button were in talks with Ferrari whilst Raikkonen is rumored, so Ferrari have a loose definition of number two. More realistically, the likely contenders are Hulkenberg, di Resta, Kovalainen, Kobayashi and Perez, reports One Stop Strategy.

The president of Ferrari has stated Perez is too inexperienced, which would also rule out Hulkenberg and di Resta. Kovalainen seems the most likely option, having started F1 two years before Kobayashi. A one year contract would be likely, allowing Ferrari another year to assess Perez, Hulkenberg, di Resta or even a recovered Kubica for a long term contract.

Image © bennovakovic

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Double DRS Banned For 2013

Button The 'double DRS' will be banned next season, reports One Stop Strategy. Currently only on the Mercedes, the system takes air passing over the rear of the car and channels it to the front of the car. The air pushes the front wing down, increasing down force and boosting performance (see Fomula1.com for diagram).

I think the FIA are mistaken to ban this system. It currently gives Mercedes a much needed boost. Experimenting with systems like this can substantially increase the pace of a weaker team, making for more interesting races. The FIA banning innovative systems after one season discourages weaker teams from trying unknown techniques to gain an edge.

Despite this ban McLaren are considering bringing double DRS to their cars for the latter part of 2012, reports Sky Sports. Also, Lotus have been experimenting with the system and plan to introduce it at Belgium, reports Planet F1.

Image © flamesworddragon

McLaren likely to continue their usual dominance at Hungary.

Free Practice Results
        FP1
FP2
1st
Hamilton
Hamilton
2nd
Button
Raikkonen
3rd
Alonso
Senna
4th
Rosberg
Massa
5th
Grosjean
Alonso
6th
Schumacher
Button
6th
Raikkonen
di Resta
8th
Bottas
Vettel
9th
Perez
Grosjean
10th
Hulkenberg
Schumacher
11th
Maldonado
Rosberg
12th
Kobayashi
Maldonado
13th
Webber
Hulkenberg
14th
di Resta
Webber
15th
Vettel
Kobayashi
16th
Ricciardo
Vergne
17th
Vergne
Ricciardo
18th
Bianchi
Perez
19th
Petrov
Petrov
20th
Pic
Kovalainen
21nd
Kovalainen
Glock
22nd
Glock
de la Rossa
23rd
de la Rossa
Pic
24th
Clos
Karthikeyan
Hamilton was quickest in both Friday practice sessions and Button was second quickest in FP1. Hamilton has the lowest odds for both qualifying (2/1 (3.00) from 888sport) and the race (3/1 (4.00) from 888sport). Hamilton certainly does look strongest but Button is better value for money for the race victory at 9/1 (8.00) from Bet365. Rain has been predicted for the race and Button is renowned for his skill handling changing weather conditions, including winning here in 2006 starting 14th on the grid. Live betting is advised: the McLaren has struggled in both the last two wet qualifying sessions and it is currently unknown if they face similar difficulties in a wet race.

The biggest surprise from qualifying was the lack of pace from the Red Bulls, both struggling to set top ten times. The rain cancelled any plans for low fuel running from Red Bull so their exact pace is unknown. However, their times were unusually low and both drivers admitted they were off the pace. Despite this Vettel is still second favorite for qualifying (11/4 (3.75) from William Hill) and the race (10/3 (4.33) from Ladbrokes). He does not currently look like value for money although FP3 Saturday morning might give a true indication of potential. Webber has 14/1 (15.00) from Ladbrokes for race victory. Having won more races than everyone but Alonso this year, these seem incredibly good odds for a high profit bet.

The qualifying should be dry which probably rules out a pole position for Alonso. With rain predicted for the race he should prove strong and 9/2 (5.50) from 888sport are good odds. The major issue will be how well the McLaren handles the wet weather. If the McLaren proves weak and given Red Bull's problems, Alonso could be good for victory. If the McLaren can keep pace in the rain then they will probably win. Live betting is recommended.

Image © nic_r

Odds above accurate at Friday 27th, 17.40 GMT. Click to see live odds.

Friday, 27 July 2012

Hungary Pre-Weekend Analysis

The 11th Race of 2012, Hungarian Grand Prix at the Hungaroring

Previous Winners
2011
Button
2010
Webber
2009
Hamilton
2008
Kovalainen
2007
Hamilton
2006
Button
2005
Raikkonen
2004
Schumacher
2003
Alonso
2002
Barrichello

The Hungaroring is typically a McLaren hunting ground, with five victories in the last six races. Only Webber, in 2010, has broken their dominance. The race has been won from 4th position or better in all but one race for the last ten years. Strangely, the race has not been won from pole since 2004.

With pole position being no guarantee of success, drivers who are weaker at qualifying usually have good odds for victory. Button has near double Hamliton's odds at 9/1 (10.00) from Ladbrokes and he looked back on the pace at Hockenheim. Webber's odds are almost three times Vettel's at 12/1 (11.00) from StanJames, despite Webber's weakness of qualifying not mattering at the Hungaroring. Raikkonen showed excellent pace in Germany, going from 10th to 4th on the grid. 14/1 (15.00) from StanJames are good odds, though betting on a podium if he does not qualify top 4 may pay off. There might be rain on Sunday so considering waiting on the forecast and bet on Alonso, Button and Schumacher if a wet race is likely.

Vettle is the current favourite at 3/1 (4.00) from 888sport, on a track he has never won. Webber has odds three times as high at 12/1 (13.00) from StanJames despite winning here in 2010. The course suits the Red Bull and Webber has the best odds.

Alonso is second favourite for victory at 7/2 (4.50) from 888sport. With the Red Bull and the McLaren suiting the Hungaroring better than the Ferrari, Alonso's odds will only be good if he qualifies well.

Qualifying bets should depend upon the weather. Alonso took pole in the last two race but he admits the Ferrari is currently weaker than his competitors, suggesting Alonso success at qualifying depends on the rain. With the McLaren weak in the rain, Alonso for pole and Schumacher qualifying top 3 are good bets for wet weather qualifying. If, as currently forecast, qualifying is dry then Vettel and Hamilton are usually equally strongest for pole position. Vettel has 9/4 (3.25) from 888sport but Hamilton's odds are better at 47/2 (4.50) from Bet 365.

Image © Rodefeld

Odds above accurate at Friday 27th, 00.40 GMT. Click to see live odds.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Post Hockenheim Analysis

Alonso's dominance continues, increasing championship lead further

Race Results
1st
Alonso
2nd
Button
3rd
Raikkonen
4th
Kobayashi
5th
Vettel
6th
Perez
6th
Schumacher
8th
Webber
9th
Hulkenberg
10th
Rosberg
11th
di Resta
12th
Massa
13th
Ricciardo
14th
Vergne
15th
Maldonado
16th
Petrov
17th
Senna
18th
Grosjean
Yet another win for Alonso puts him 34 points clear in the championship. His win at Hockenheim, however, was not dominant: Vettel or Button were never further than a few seconds behind. Had Vettel, Hamilton or Webber been on pole it is difficult to imagine Alonso making a pass but Alonso probably only took pole due to the rain. Alonso looks good for the championship but not yet for regular race victories.

The two most interesting results were Button and Perez. After a run of six terrible races, Button came second after Vettel's penalty and at times looked a contender for victory. There no good reason to believe Button's performance is a one off, so he should be the fifth man in the field contending for victory once again. Perez came an impressive 6th, having started 17th after a five place penalty. Without that penalty he probably would have finished 4th, converting into a podium after Vettel's twenty second penalty and paying off at 32/1 (33.00) from Ladbrokes.

The race was disappointing for Rosberg and Webber but they could have been expected higher up the grid without their gear box penalties. The major disappointment was Grosjean finishing 18th, having never finished below 6th except due to retirement.

Belgium GP race weekend 31st August to 2nd September. Click to see live odds for next race.

Image © nic_r