After abandoning plans to utilise a new performance-enhancing, exhaust-driven diffuser at Silverstone, McLaren were hoping to bring their new toy online for this week’s German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.
But testing is again behind schedule after Lewis Hamilton slid out of first practice on a rain-soaked circuit. The chances are, therefore, that Hamilton (22/1 with Sporting Bet) and Jenson Button (25/1 with Betfred) will struggle from a positions behind Ferrari and the Red Bulls of Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel this week.
Webber, victorious at Silverstone and 15/1 with Sporting Bet to post a second successive maximum, clearly still has issues with Vettel’s perceived position as his team’s number one driver, despite the conciliatory noises emanating from the Red Bull garage this week, and could be in the mood to spoil the party again in the German’s backyard.
Vettel is a general 10/11 favourite to win the German Grand Prix after taking pole but, apart from Michael Schumacher and brother Ralf, German drivers have an appalling record on home soil so the value may lie with the Australian or Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.
Alonso, who has had absolutely no luck in his last two outings, can be backed at 23/10 with Boylesports after a flying qualifying lap for second on the grid. Hockenheim doesn’t lend itself to overtaking so the race to the first bend is all important.