How the Betting Shapes Up on the Eve of Historic 2021 F1 Season
It’s now just two weeks until the 2021 F1 season gets underway, with teams now en route to Bahrain to prepare for the first Grand Prix of the year on 28th March. It will be a historic season for many reasons. First of all, there will be an unprecedented 23 Grand Prix races this year. And, F1 will also return to the Circuit Zandvoort for a first Dutch Grand Prix since 1985.
But, as you might expect, a lot of the ‘history’ this season will once again be in the hands of Lewis Hamilton. The seven-time F1 World Champion has the chance to move one ahead of Michael Schumacher in the all-time standings. Should he win the Spanish Grand Prix on 9th May, Hamilton will equal Ayrton Senna’s record of winning five consecutive Grand Prix at the same circuit. The Brazilian legend won five in a row at Monaco from 1989-1993.
Another goal for Hamilton is that he could equal Schumacher’s record of 179 starts with the same constructor. That will come for Hamilton (156 starts for Mercedes) in the last race of the season in Abu Dhabi, providing he starts every race. There are other records for Hamilton to pursue, but he won’t be the only history maker. Kimi Raikkonen, for instance, will extend his record of 329 Grand Prix starts.
Hamilton is again the clear favourite
But what about the betting before the season starts? As you might expect, Hamilton is the odds-on favourite to retain the World Championship. Those placing online bets with 888sport can get odds of 4/11 on the Brit. His main rivals, at least according to the bookmakers, are Max Verstappen (5/1) and Valtteri Bottas (11/2).
Perhaps surprisingly, George Russell comes in at fourth-favourite for the Drivers’ Championship. At 16/1, it’s still something of a longshot, but it shows the increasingly high regard the young Brit is being held in.
The 2021 Ferrari drivers are both longshots in the betting, with 25/1 quoted for Charles Leclerc and 66/1 for Carlos Sainz Jnr. The historic betting stats are sometimes unclear and unreliable, but this looks like the highest odds for any Ferrari driver for a generation.
Mercedes odds-on for Constructors’ Championship
As for the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes looks nailed on at 1/5. Red Bull comes next at 10/3. Ferrari, meanwhile, is out at 14/1, unsurprising given that the 2020 season was probably its worst season since 1980, a time when Jody Scheckter and Gilles Villeneuve could only amass eight points.
Aston Martin is quoted at 66/1, with all other constructors quoted at that price are above. If you believe in miracles, the odds for unfancied Williams are 1000/1.
Overall, the odds for the 2021 season have taken on a familiar pattern, looking similar to the last few years. If anything, Hamilton and Mercedes’ grip on the sport seems to have tightened. But things can change fast in the sport, so don’t be surprised if someone upsets the odds.