The betting options for the Canadian Grand Prix are a good example of how the odds can be slow to respond to changes in the established order.
The spectacle of Lewis Hamilton being regularly beaten by a team mate is not one we are used to seeing. And his team Nico Rosberg is not a familiar name at the front of the field.
So despite Rosberg winning the Monaco Grand Prix (as tipped here last week), taken pole position for the last three races in a row, leading more laps than anyone else this year and having a better average finishing position than his world championship-winning team mate, he offers better odds than Hamilton in several respects.
Good odds on Rosberg
For example you’ll get longer odds on Rosberg to win this weekend (5.5) than Sebastian Vettel (3.5), Fernando Alonso or Lewis Hamilton (both 4.5).
One of the Mercedes drivers has to be the top pick for pole position as they’ve had the four. Here too, Rosberg’s odds are longer than Hamilton’s at 3.0 versus 2.75.
But could Rosberg go all the way and emulate his 1982 championship-winning father Keke? The odds are strongly against him at the moment at 35.0. Whether he can, will depend on whether Mercedes can find a cure for the high tyre degradation which has plagued them at most races, and whether the FIA will punish them severely for breaking the F1 rules by conducting a three-day test before the Monaco Grand Prix.
More Canadian Grand Prix odds
The bookmakers have woken up to Mercedes being a competitive force in qualifying. The upshot of this is the rare situation where a bet on Vettel for pole position might bring a reasonable return.
The serial pole-setter already has 38 of them to his name so his odds on Saturday success are usually very short. But 3.75 for Vettel on pole this weekend is decent value considering how close he came to beating Rosberg’s time in Monaco.
Kimi Raikkonen is my pick for victory in the race. He triumphed here in 2005 and the track should suit the Lotus, which is superbly kind to its tyres. Raikkonen’s race odds are 6.0 at the moment.
It’s surprising to see how high Felipe Massa’s odds have risen for this race. Yes, he had a bruising weekend in Monaco, but he’s tended to be much closer to team mate Alonso this year and the Ferrari is a solid package. Odds of 30.0 are considerably higher than I’d expect them to be.
It’s worth bearing in mind the Canadian Grand Prix often throws up frantic, unpredictable races. It’s an unusual track which doesn’t offer much grip. The straights are long and there aren’t many high-speed corners, so the engineers trim the cars out for high speed which makes them nervous and twitchy.
Those factors combined with the limited run-off around the temporary circuit can lead to crashes, Safety Car periods and all manner of strategic complications. It can be a great race to see a long shot come in: A Ferrari hero who hasn’t won a race for almost five years, as in Massa’s case, could fit the bill.
And then there’s McLaren, who’ve had a desperate start to the season with their problematic MP4-28. They’ve won the last three races in Canada but the odds on them doing so again this year are very long. Jenson Button, the 2012 winner, offers returns of 65.0. Team mate Sergio Perez, who was on the podium here last year for Sauber, is at 75.0.
Bet now on the Canadian Grand Prix
Keith Collantine is the editor of Formula One Blog F1 Fanatic