The Austrian Grand Prix takes place at the picturesque Red Bull Ring this weekend, with practice and qualifying scheduled for Friday and Saturday, with the race on Sunday 10 July.
Once again, reigning champion and current leader of the Drivers’ Championship, Max Verstappen, is the favourite with the major online bookmakers, such as bet365, William Hill and BetFred, to take the chequered flag.
The Red Bull Ring circuit isn’t the biggest, but the series of quick corners (including the famous Rindt right-hander) after the drivers come downhill after three straights separated by a couple of uphill right-handers, will certainly provide a stern test.
Verstappen, who has won the Austrian GP on three occasions (2018, 2019 and 2021), can be backed at odds of 10/11 with William Hill to do so again. The Dutch Red Bull driver put in a dominant performance to win here a year ago, finishing 17.973 seconds ahead of Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes).
Max Verstappen for Fastest Lap at 11/8 with Coral
Verstappen has won six of 10 races this year to date, and his seventh-place finish at the British Grand Prix last weekend can largely be put down to his car striking debris from a collision between Yuki Tsunoda and Pierre Gasly.
It’s difficult to argue against Verstappen’s favouritism for the race, but there might be slightly better value in taking the odds for him to have the Fastest Lap, at best odds of 11/8 with Coral.
This is clearly a circuit at which Verstappen thrives and last year he clocked the fastest lap at 1:06.200 - by some distance the quickest.
Leclerc Out of Form
Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc is second favourite to win the race at 13/5 with BoyleSports, but the 24-year-old Monaco-born driver hasn’t had a top-three finish in the last five races.
As things stand, Verstappen’s Red Bull team-mate Sergio Perez is second in the drivers’ standings, 34-points adrift of Verstappen (and nine ahead of Leclerc). Perez is a 10/1 chance with bet365 to win the race.
Last week at Silverstone saw Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz win his first Formula 1 race in an exhilarating contest, with Sergio Perez second and Lewis Hamilton third.
Sainz For a Podium Finish
Sainz is available at odds of 10/1 with Unibet to claim back-to-back victories, but it might be more prudent to look elsewhere for those looking to back the Spaniard.
Sainz has been forced to retire in three of the 10 races this season, but has secured a podium finish in six of the other seven. That form suggests that he could be a decent punt at 1/1 (Evens) with Coral for another Podium Finish in Spielberg.
* F1 betting odds correct at the time of writing. Subject to changes.