World Rally Championship 2018 Odds

While the formula one season has only just begun, the World Rally Championship has been in full swing since the middle of January. True lovers of motorsport will know that this is the real test of endurance – a gruelling campaign that runs right through to November and therefore takes up almost a whole year of competition.

With three months gone, the championship table for 2018 is really starting to take shape and there’s also a small, but busy set of betting markets to run alongside.

The Story so far

Sebastien Ogier

At the time of writing, four events have been completed in the 2018 World Rally Championships and we are now heading for the next race which takes place in Argentina over four days from the 26th of April.

After those four initial rallies, France’s Sebastien Ogier, in the M-Sport Ford, has won three events with the other race going to Belgium’s Thierry Neuville in the Hyundai. Needless to say, Ogier is currently clear at the top of the Drivers’ Championship with 84 points but his rival Neuville has finished inside the Top Ten in each of those four opening rallies and therefore remains relatively close behind on 67 points.

Behind the top two, Ott Tanak from Estonia and Norway’s Andreas Mikkelsen are just about in touch with the leaders but a gap is already opening up at this relatively early stage of the season and that’s reflected in the betting markets moving forward.

Outright Betting

Following on from those three early wins, Sebastien Ogier is the odds on favourite to win the World Rally Championship in 2018 and the Frenchman can be picked up at 8/15 with EnergyBet. It’s been an impressive opening to the campaign but few punters would have seen past Ogier even before the season started.

Not only is he the reigning World Rally champion, the 34 year old comes into this season with five straight titles from 2013 all the way through to 2017 so clearly he’s going to take some beating.

Behind Ogier in second place in the outright betting is Thierry Deauville who, after that win in Sweden, can now be backed at odds of 6/4 with Coral and Ladbrokes. The Belgian finished in the runners up spot in 2017 and has finished second in the World Rally standings on three occasions so, if there is to be a challenge to Ogier at the top, this seems to be the most likely source.

The bookmakers certainly seem to agree with that assessment as the market really starts to drift beyond this point. Ott Tanak is the third favourite in the outright betting and he is down at 14/1 with Ladbrokes and then we get to Jari-Matti Latvala, Andreas Mikkelsen and Kris Meeke who are all available at 25/1 with EnergyBet.

Of those four, Estonian Tanak has recorded two second place finishes in the opening four events so may be worth watching as the season unfolds. Great Britain’s Meeke has arguably been more consistent with three finishes in single figures but that record was spoiled by a retirement in Sweden.

From this point the prices continue to lengthen and Esapekka Lappi and Sebastien Loeb are both at 40/1 with EnergyBet. Loeb was the last person other than Sebastien Ogier to win a World Rally title but the 2012 Champion entered late this season and hasn’t made much impression since arriving at the third race in Mexico.

Beyond those two names, drivers reach the three figure point with Irish Driver Craig Breen at 150/1 with Ladbrokes and there seems little hope of an upset from those odds.

Other Betting Options

In terms of outright betting we just have the market for the winner of the Drivers Championship available right now. It is possible that we may see Betting without Sebastien Ogier as the competition progresses but this isn’t a sport that the bookmakers fully embrace so that’s doubtful.

At the time of writing, prices are not out for the next rally in Argentina at the end of April but that should hopefully change as the race approaches. Once again, not all bookies will get involved but Ladbrokes, Coral and EnergyBet who we have mentioned here, are likely options along with 10Bet and LVBet who tend to have a better range of motorsport betting.

Verdict

This is a sport where one driver has dominated for five long years and the early exchanges in 2018 suggest that nothing is set to change any time yet. Sebastien Ogier won’t win every race so the real value will come in result betting for individual rallies but his overall consistency makes him an obvious bet for the overall title.

The other drivers have been picking up points and will continue to claim the occasional win but over the course of the whole season, nothing short of a miracle is likely to take the title away from the reigning champion. It may not be the most adventurous tip that we’ve ever given you but it should, if form is maintained, be one of the more likely.

Of the chasing pack, Britain’s Kris Meeke is perhaps the most underrated and could be a decent option if you can get Each Way terms at that 25/1 price but Ogier is the pick for the outright title and his 8/15 odds will only get shorter if he wins in Argentina later this month.

Best Bet for 2018 World Rally Championships

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