Malaysian Grand Prix: Odds and Betting Preview
A serious error of judgement by Sebastian Vettel in Singapore last time out means that the German’s title challenge could effectively come to an end in Malaysia on Sunday. Lewis Hamilton went on to take the chequered flag and extend his lead at the top of the drivers’ championship which he will look to close out this weekend.
For many, the title race looks to be over but there’s certainly plenty of interest in the Malaysian Grand Prix as a standalone event and the betting markets are getting busy in the lead up to the start.
While he may not actually start on pole, Hamilton is certainly in the best place to win this Grand Prix as far as the odds setters are concerned. The Englishman starts as the odds on favourite with most bookmakers while Stan James have a top price of Even Money on Hamilton taking the chequered flag.
Next up is Sebastian Vettel who can be backed at best odds of 2/1 with bet365 and 10Bet and as far as the bookies are concerned, those are the only two to really follow. Behind Hamilton and Vettel, Valtteri Bottas is the third favourite at 13/2 with SkyBet while Daniel Ricciardo comes in as fourth favourite but is way back at 18/1 with Paddy Power.
So, if you agree with the theory that this is a two-man race, how do you make a decision?
One thing to keep in mind is the respective records of the two drivers at the Malaysian Grand Prix. This isn’t one of Hamilton’s better events and the Englishman has a sole victory back in 2014 but it’s fair to assume that Vettel looks forward to this and has it circled on his calendar.
The German has won on no fewer than four occasions – a record for this event that he shares with John MacDonald. Vettel’s last victory came in 2015 and with a more competitive machine, he clearly can’t be ruled out.
Form is hard to judge after Vettel’s mistake in Singapore but momentum is certainly with Hamilton as we come into this GP. With three wins in succession – the only driver to have achieved that feat this season – he is perhaps better placed to take out this race and Even Money may be the best option from Sunday.
Along with the outright winner betting for this GP, you can take advantage of all the usual side bets for Malaysia this weekend. Included among those are markets for the Fastest Lap, who will start on Pole and whether a driver can finish in the top three and claim a podium place.
Naturally Hamilton and Vettel are going to feature very highly in these markets too with the Englishman installed as favourite to record the fastest lap at a best price of 11/10 with MarathonBet.
However, these are the markets where you can find the better value: Bottas may not win the race but he has the potential for fastest lap and is a good option in this particular market at a top price of 15/2 with BetFred.
Further back in this market, Kimi Raikkonen is even better value at 18/1 with Paddy Power to record the fastest lap. Over a long course, the chances of the Finn winning are naturally going to be limited but Raikkonen only needs to open up his Ferrari to the max for one full circuit in Malaysia this weekend in order to return the fastest lap and deliver a seriously good profit for some lucky punters.
Raikkonen, who was the last Ferrari champion back in 2007, is an experienced campaigner at the highest level and could also be a strong shout for a top three podium finish at best odds of 24/13 with MarathonBet.
Other options for outside punts in the Top 3 market could include Max Verstappen at 7/4 with bet365 and SkyBet and maybe a nostalgic punt on Fernando Alonso who can be found at a top price of 100/1 with most bookmakers including Paddy Power and William Hill.
We’re close to qualifying now and naturally that will give us an even better indication as to who will take the race in Malaysia. Will Hamilton claim the champagne and move even closer to another Drivers’ Championship or can Vettel recover from that poor display in Singapore and keep the battle alive?
We know that Vettel has that far superior record in this race while curiously, the Malaysian GP is one of Hamilton’s weaker events so will that play a part in your thinking when staking in the outright markets?
The decision is yours but there are some good prices in the markets and some choice too if you don’t want to bet on the outright win.