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F1 / Review / Grand Prix 6 10 2009

2009 Season - Races 9-17

Another highly successful season for Bettorlogic, our fourth in a row, which yeilded a profitable return of 69% and 29 points on the spreads.

2009 Formula 1 champion Jenson Button


We made 41 recommendations across 17 races which included Barrcihello's win in Valencia at 10.0 and Lewis Hamilton's in Hungary at 6.5. In 2006, we made a 44% profitable return and 79 points on the spreads; 2007 51% profitable return, +43.5 spreads and last year 87% profitable return and +10 on the spreads.


Race 17 Abu Dhabi

"Lewis Hamilton should fly round this track and, despite having slightly less fuel than the rest, there is nothing to suggest he won’t win but at a best price of 1.52 there’s not much value to be had. Vettel’s record from second and that of all drivers from that position this season, suggests he should be laid for a podium finish.

The record of champions in the final race of the season and Button’s this season should see him move up the order. Furthermore, the Brawn tyre should be more suited to the track than that of the Red Bull and as Barrichello has struggled to stay ahead of Button when starting just ahead, there is a more than reasonable chance of Button finishing on the podium and we wouldn't discount a Hamilton/Button dual forecast (6.0).

Our perennial favourite, Jarno Trulli, has a poor points scoring record from sixth and our only reservation about laying him is the record of the sixth fastest this season. Don’t be surprised if he fails to make it to the finish. Another who may struggle is Sutil with his 43% retirement record at tracks where he hasn’t previously raced and a 56% record when starting for Force India from a Q3 position. Nico Rosberg has been making a habit recently of finishing higher than he starts and until he retired in Brazil was on track to be the only driver this season to complete in all races."

Result: 1st S Vettel, 2nd M Webber, 3rd J Button, 9th N Rosberg, 18th A Sutil


Race 16 Brazil

"Barrichello needs five more points than Button to take the drivers title to the final race and a win should guarantee him that. However, it is five years since he last fronted the grid; he hasn’t a great record at Interlagos, and is scheduled to stop a couple of laps before those closest to him on the grid.

Mark Webber’s Red Bull is probably the fastest car on the circuit and whilst he has pledged to do all he can to assist his team-mate’s slim championship hopes, the fact that Vettel is no where close to him on the grid means he can concentrate solely on his own race. Barrichello is best priced at 2.74, Mark Webber 3.05. Interestingly, in the past ten years, 55% of drivers who won mid season as Webber did, won another race that year.

Raikkonen at 13.5 might have been an each way choice considering how he likes this track and it’s where his team have triumphed for the past three years, but Ferrari are concentrating on next year and are not as competitive as they were when the Finn won from sixth at another favoured track – Spa – four races ago.

With Button, Vettel and Hamilton all starting down the grid, the top-10 line up has an unfamiliar look about it. Trulli is fourth favourite to make podium, just ahead of Sutil, but the Frenchman is too inconsistent and the German, whilst on the cusp of claiming a first ever podium, just lacks experience from the front of the grid to satisfy us. Furthermore, Sutil may get jumped by the KERS of Raikkonen at the start.

Button has real problems with three inexperienced drivers ahead of him and a couple of KERS just behind. The funnel effect of the first two corners will certainly give him plenty to think about and it’s surprising that he’s longer priced (5.0) not to finish than many of those at the front of the grid.

The weather is the big imponderable for this race. There should be rain but when and of what intensity is difficult to predict. If it’s heavy at the start that should favour Barrichello as he would benefit from clearer visibility and should build a lead to protect his earlier pitstop; dry or light rain and we would support Mark Webber and, if dry, expect Vettel to make significant progress from the rear. Our advice is to wait and see what the track conditions are like just before the start."

The race was run under dry conditions.

Result: M Webber 1st, 2nd R Kubica, 3rd L Hamilton, 4th Vettel, 5th J Button

Race 15 Japan

" We had expected Sebastian Vettel to be shorter than the 1.88 offered by Betfair and the only negative about his chances is that no debutant at Suzuka has won in the past 20 years, although only Jacques Villeneuve was as well placed as the German to do so. Vettel needs the win to keep his title hopes alive.

The history of this track being dominated by the front row might have interested us in the dual forecast but Jarno Trulli has too poor a record from such a starting position to interest us. Second favourite Lewis Hamilton (3.8) should get past Trulli but 1.62 on a dual forecast with Vettel is too short, especially as both race here for the first time.

Our analysis has highlighted that Suzuka debutants starting outside the top-10 have a 45% retirement rate and that brings in several drivers, the most interesting at the prices are Kovalainen, Buemi and Sutil from the top-10. Kovalainen is 4.8 not to be classified, Sutil 4 and Buemi 2.95. A driver is classified if still racing with 10% of the race remaining; alternatively they can be laid at a range of 1.3 to 1.7. Buemi and his team-mate Alguersuari are better priced at 2.5 not to finish.

Mark Webber let us down last weekend when he lost position because of a penalty and eventually retired. The record of points scoring drivers when starting from the pit lane might have been enough to warrant a small interest but at 4-6 on the spread race index, he’d have to finish seventh to return a profit and that’s just a little high for us."

Result: 1st S Vettel, 2nd J Trulli, 3rd L Hamilton, 11th H Kovalainen, 13th A Sutil.

Race 14 Singapore

"Normally we rely on past results from a track to yield some interesting propositions but there’s virtually no previous evidence from Singapore because of the two safety cars last year. The McLaren with its upgrades has put a big smile on Lewis Hamilton’s face and although his performance from pole has tailed off in recent efforts, as it has for other such starters of late, he is very difficult to oppose.

At Monza we had Hamilton as the winner as his team-mate Heikki Kovalainen was set to perform a key role by acting as a sufficient block to the dangerous Brawns. He failed to do that in any shape or form but Hamilton needs no such protection this weekend. What may make proceedings more interesting is rain and if forecasts are to be believed that may well happen. Even so, we think there is some value in the Hamilton price of 1.92.

Mark Webber has managed to equal or improve on this starting position in all five races this season when starting from the first two rows and has a good record for finishing ahead of his team-mate with an inferior starting position. He or Vettel are the most likely challengers to Hamilton and 38% of drivers that have won a race by the 10th race of the season have won at least one of the remaining races.

We would expect one of the Q2 starters to score points as has happened in 11 of the 13 grand prix this season. Raikkonen would be one such candidate but Ferrari have little confidence going into this race because whilst others have upgraded their cars, they are focused solely on next year. Button was out of sorts throughout qualifying but will have a fuel strategy to make progress. His price to score points is too short for us."

Result : 1st L Hamilton, 2nd T Glock, 3rd F Alonso, M Webber ret.


Race 13 Italy

"There are several interesting scenarios for this race not least how advantageous it may be for those on a one stop strategy. Ross Brawn declared himself delighted with the starting position for his two drivers and he is a master of strategy.

History tells us that the winner’s rostrum is dominated by those starting on the front row and although Hamilton has a light load, we still think it is his race to lose. He’s a warm favourite at 2.36 with Raikkonen next best at 5.5 followed by Button (8.0) and Barrichello (9.0). Whilst it is their local track, we believe the circuit will suit the McLaren more than Ferrari and the success of those from pole and the relatively poor recent record for first time winners in the second half of the season (Raikkonen) makes Hamilton a worthy favourite in our book. If the race starts under a safety car, because of rain, that may not help his cause as he needs to build up a lead. Conversley, if the race starts wet but with no safety car, he'll be in a strong position.

Fisichella came desperately close to winning at Spa and Sutil should score points but may be denied a podium simply because he is surrounded by those with KERS assistance. The biggest danger to Hamilton may well come from Brawn although they could be held up by Kovalainen if he is on a similar strategy. If it is a Brawn then which one will it be? Button is favoured in the market but only rarely have Brawns reversed positions in the race. Team-mates on the same third or fourth row but starting in arrears have finished ahead on 44% of the applicable occasions. It’s also debatable how hard Button will push his team-mate in his quest for the title if clear of the Red Bulls. Interestingly, these paired drivers have won only 4% of the 85 races over the past 20 years.

Heikki Kovalainen, on a one stop strategy, is certainly a prospect for podium and KERS cars starting 4th-6th in recent races have finished on the podium in three of four races with two wins. Should Hamilton fail for any reason, Kovalainen is well placed to win his second grand prix and the first at the Hungaroring was given to him by a late Massa retirement.

Of those starting outside the top-10, the most likely points scorer is Trulli (2.88) but it is a modest recommendation."

Result: 1st  R Barrichello, 2nd J Button, 3rd K Raikkonen. 

Race 12 Belgium

"The top four in the market for this race are priced between 4.5 and 8.0 and they don’t include either the fastest or third fastest qualifier. In fact, the favourite, Kimi Raikkonen (4.5) starts in sixth and that shows how unexpected this grid was. The only way to explain how someone can be on pole who has never previously qualified top-10 for his team and that those closest to him are drivers more used to racing down the grid in recent races, is some strange tyre anomalies. All three teams at the head of this weekend’s grid have doubts surrounding their future, have they been given a helping hand - possibly.

That makes it hard to find the race winner. If Fisichella were to win that would be extraordinary and he’s running light compared to Trulli and Heidfeld. There’s no doubt that Trulli is in a strong position because he should assume the leadership after the first round of stops but his final placement relative to his start position is a concern. Drivers who, like Barrichello, win for the first time in the second half of the season have a poor record in the very next race and the Brazilian is scheduled to be one of the first to pit.
Prior to seeing the market, we would have promoted Kimi Raikkonen as an each way prospect but in the expectation that we would be a few points longer than 4.5.

Raikkonen does have a great record at this track but like his win from 10th in 2004 probably needs a well timed safety car to elevate him from a near guaranteed podium finish onto a winning one. Barrichello will have taken considerable confidence from last weekend but we don’t think this is a track for Brawn although 3.0 for a podium interested us until we saw the weights and realised how light he was running in final qualifying.

The markets are strong on Vettel but he’s just too far back for us and so, almost by default, we come back to Trulli in the expectation that the team will have learnt from when they had both drivers on the front row in Bahrain but on a light load. Interestingly, if we treat Trulli as the pole starter (based on fuel loads), then those who have had a prior pole in the second half of the season but no wins have won four of seven with three failures to complete. A win for Toyota would be a much needed shot in the arm at a time when they are deciding whether to continue in the sport.

Timo Glock’s top-10 starting record makes his points scoring price of 1.81 too short and we’d lay him at around 2.2 ."

Result: 1st  K Raikkonen, 2nd G Fisichella, 3rd S Vettel. T Glock finished 10th, J Trulli failed to complete

Race 11 Valencia

"This is the fifth time Lewis Hamilton has started on pole having won the previous race and although he’s only converted two of those into wins, he did fail to complete on two other occasions. Rubens Barrichello has four to five more laps of fuel than either McLaren but how much ground will he have to make up by the time they pit most probably around lap 20? The only other factor that may play into the hands of the Brazilian are tyres as the Brawn tends to be more sympathetic to rear tyres than the McLaren and that could be a factor on a hot surface.

Whilst it’s hard to look beyond Hamilton for the race win, we do think he is very short at a best priced 1.62. Another more general stat in Barrichello’s favour is that in a season when a team-mate is a multiple winner as Button is, the other team driver has won at least one race, just as Barrichello did in three of four such seasons when racing alongside Michael Schumacher. Button may well be compromised by Kimi Raikkonen getting ahead of him and Vettel with his KERS assistance and that would remove an obligation on Barrichello’s part to assist his team-mate

There’s not a great deal else that interests us as the evidence, albeit it slim, is that Valencia is a track unsuited to overtaking and therefore excessive gains are unlikely. Our strategy for the race would be to back Barrichello at 10.0 and to cover the main danger by taking Hamilton and Barrichello on the dual forecast at 3.75."

Result: 1st R Barrichello, 2nd L Hamilton, 3rd  K Raikkonen

Race 10 Hungary

"What looked like it might be a fairly uneventful race has been turned on its head by the final qualifying session.  Alonso is on a light fuel load with not much to chose between Vettel, Webber and Hamilton. Button is running heavy and that may take him up to fourth as the race progresses but not enough for podium.  Currently Alonso’s third favourite at 5.7 with Vettel as short as 2.38 with some books.

We’d be keen on Webber’s chances (5.0) based on his recent performances against his team-mate and the head-to-head record of the third v second fastest at the Hungaroring. What puts us off the Australian is that Hamilton may well jump him at the start, and quite possibly Vettel, which could compromise his race. Another factor against Webber is that only three 26 first time winners followed up with a win in their next race.

Our concern with Vettel is the poor record for second fastest qualifiers since the start of last season when a non team-mate is on pole and that he might get stuck behind Hamilton early in the race. Best priced at 2.6 to win, he may well do so but it’s too short for us.

Our strategy would be to back Hamilton ew at 6.5 with Bet 365 but not for maximum stakes and have a smaller stake on the forecast with Vettel at 4.5.

Our other considerations would be to lay Raikkonen for a points finish at 1.75. and likewise for Jamie Alguersuari to be classified at 1.78 or not to finish at 2.25 with Paddy Power . However Ferrari may fare it will be overshadowed by the freak accident that Massa suffered."

Result: 1st L Hamilton, 2nd K Raikkonen, 3rd  M Webber, J Alguersuari finished 15th.






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