Wednesday, 27 June 2018

Austrian GP Betting Preview - Ring of fire

F1 betting really is a perilous challenge right now, and heading into this weekend's Austrian Grand Prix is doesn't get easier.

Be prepared for another close fight between the
 'big three' teams at the Red Bull Ring
Photo: Octane Photography
The previous two F1 rounds haven't been too far removed from each other in terms of track demands - indeed neither are too far removed from the Red Bull Ring hosting us this weekend, long straights separated mainly by technical turns.

And yet - two rounds ago Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari trounced the pack and Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes was nowhere. Last time out they almost exactly swapped places.

It seems F1's way right now, that an accumulation of small and peculiar circumstances to that weekend - track layout, surface, tyre compounds, temperatures, and a myriad of team decisions made throughout - is enough to tilt the close fight at the front one way or another.

Therefore our assessment of betting value may be based purely on the odds. And this again nudges us towards Sebastian Vettel, as the bookies are continuing their own persistent erring towards Lewis Hamilton. Vettel's 3/1 to get pole and 5/2 to win look better value than Hamilton's 4/5 and 11/10 respectively.

And in another bookie perennial they don't appear to have much faith in Hamilton's team-mate Valtteri Bottas. Granted he is yet to get a pole or win this year but the latter owes something to poor fortune, and the Finn took pole and win at this track last year. He can be backed at 13/2 to get pole again and a whole 9/1 to win. At the very least the 8/13 available for him to get on the podium looks good.

Red Bull may be worth backing at
the track that bears its name
Photo: Octane Photography
Red Bull has a pretty good previous at the track that bears its name - Daniel Ricciardo had possibly his most competitive race of the year in pure pace terms here last season and only finished six seconds shy of the winner; Max Verstappen had a similar gap to first when finishing second here the year before.

Therefore it may entice that you can back either to get on the podium at odds against - Ricciardo at 7/4 and Verstappen at 6/4.

As ever those outside the 'big three' teams will be in a separate category in effect, and of them Carlos Sainz may be worth backing. He was well on the way to being 'best of the rest' in France before late technical problems while his qualifying lap in Austria last year was a thing of wonder. The 3/1 for him to finish in the top six and 4/11 to score look tempting.

As ever keep your money away from Fernando Alonso and McLaren, whom the bookies currently have touching yet likely misplaced faith in.

Austria's quite big on unusual results - related to a short lap and first two turns that encourage carnage - so you might be tempted by a longer odds punt; 11/5 for Pierre Gasly to score looks decent.

With the short lap - and that as outlined at the outset the battle at the front is tight right now - the 9/5 available for a pole winning margin of under a tenth looks generous too.

All odds quoted in this article were accurate on the Oddschecker website at 1915 BST on Wednesday 27 June 2018.

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