How the Bookies See It
|Mexico GP Winner||
- Lewis Hamilton won his ninth Formula 1 race of the season in the USA last weekend, and by a margin of more than ten seconds. He started the US Grand Prix in pole position – the 11th of the year and the 72nd of his career thus far – but quickly lost position to Sebastian Vettel, who was clearly intending to take an aggressive approach to the race. Vettel remained in front for a short while, but Hamilton managed to re-establish his dominance after half a dozen laps, and he maintained that position, eventually extending his lead and winning by 10.14 seconds. The Brit added another 25 points to his tally for the season and is so close to winning his fourth championship that he can probably taste it.
- Sebastian Vettel has had a tough time of things in recent weeks, with a variety of problems causing him to lose his previous position at the top of the Drivers’ Championship table and allow Hamilton to replace him as the hot favourite to win the 2017 title. Fortunately for the German, his previous mechanical problems were absent in the USA, and he secured second place on the grid for the race in Austin, Texas. Vettel got off to a flying start, but he couldn’t maintain first position for long, and for the most part was focused on making sure that the Brit did as little damage to his championship chances as possible. Vettel eventually finished in second place to grab 18 points, which puts him on 265 points for the season.
- Max Verstappen started the US Grand Prix in 16th place on the grid even though he was the 6th fastest driver during qualifying, thanks to a penalty incurred for a change of engine. The Dutchman didn’t let that deter him, however, and he succeeded in steadily fighting up through the ranks to eventually finish in third place. Unfortunately, the driver was then given a five second penalty for cutting Turn 17 on the last lap as he overtook Kimi Raikkonen, and that controversial decision put him in fourth place, giving him 12 points for the race. Verstappen is now on 123 points for the season, which puts him in sixth place in the Drivers’ Championship table.
The race for the 2017 Drivers’ Championship looks to be all over bar the shouting, and a win in Mexico this Sunday would seal the deal for Lewis Hamilton. Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel won’t want to make things easy for his Mercedes rival, and he will no doubt be hoping for some kind of miracle to help him close the points gap, but there is no rational reason to expect such an outcome, and the form book, like the odds offered by the bookies, points to Hamilton being the most likely winner.
The Mexican Grand Prix only returned to the Formula 1 racing calendar in 2015, when Nico Rosberg won for Mercedes, with Lewis Hamilton in second place. Hamilton gave the team their second success in a row by winning the race in 2016, and we will side with the likely Champion – who is already the favourite to win the title in 2018 – to repeat that winning performance this Sunday.
Sports.net’s Top Tip
*Please note, odds may change as the race approaches.