Formula 1 is back from its four-week holiday to finish the second half of the racing season. This point of the year is an opportune time for bettors to make and/or update their 2021 F1 Drivers Championship prediction.
If you’re stuck between betting Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen, then you’re in good company. That’s a question every bettor and even bookie is grappling with. Currently, the F1 betting odds to win the title are favoring Hamilton ever slightly, per the top online sportsbooks.
After the most recent rain-shortened Belgian Grand Prix — which Verstappen technically “won” after two measly laps — Hamilton clings to a three-point lead in the driver standings. This scenario sets up a dash to the finish to close out the season for drivers and bettors alike.
F1 Betting Recap
In case you haven’t kept up with Formula 1 this season, here’s an eight-word recap: it’s been pure domination by Hamilton and Verstappen. Ten of 12 races have been won by one or the other driver (four wins by Hamilton, six by Verstappen). The two races that neither were victorious was only because Verstappen crashed late (while in the lead) and in the other, Hamilton made an end-of-race mistake that placed him second instead of first.
The Hamilton-Verstappen rivalry reached a fever pitch at July’s British Grand Prix. In that race, Hamilton crashed into Verstappen, sending him into the grass (and eventually, the hospital). Hamilton overcame a 10-second penalty to win that event, while Verstappen got a DNF. The result sliced Verstappen’s 33-point lead in the standings to just eight.
Red Bull accused Hamilton and Mercedes of purposefully orchestrating the stunt. An accusation that gained credibility the next race when Valterri Bottas also collided with Verstappen. We’re not here to pick sides, only to notify you of the “bad blood” between both teams, which will surely carry into the remainder of the racing season.
F1 Drivers Championship Betting Pick
Call us crazy, but we don’t think Verstappen and Hamilton are as evenly matched as the betting odds and point tally indicates — not this year, at least. One has been better from start-to-finish and that’s Verstappen.
Why? Well, Red Bull has the best car in the circuit for one. That’s less of an opinion and more of fact, one opined by Hamilton himself on multiple occasions. That hasn’t changed and we think it’s the ultimate difference-maker between the two rivals. So yes, we’re betting Verstappen to win his first-ever driver’s title.
Look, the biggest threat to Verstappen this year has been crashes, not Hamilton. Three different ones — whether purposeful or just plain unlucky — have robbed him of crucial points in the leaderboard. We have a tough time believing that string of bad luck will continue for Verstappen. Without any of the bad breaks (literally), Verstappen and his superior car will outpace Hamilton on the leaderboard.
How To Watch Remaining F1 Season
In the United States, ESPN is the sole broadcaster of any and every Formula 1 event, which includes practices, qualifying stages, and the actual Grand Prix themselves. The network airs those events across its family of networks like ESPN2, ESPNU, and for the very top races, the regular ESPN channel.
Start times differ based on where the race takes place. If it’s in Europe or Asia, start times are bright and early in America. However, in the latter part of the 2021 season, Formula 1 will trek to the Western world and host events in Austin, Brazil, and Mexico — all of which will be in reasonable start times for those in America.
Formula 1 races are always on Sunday and nine remain on the calendar (for now; cancellations due to the pandemic could always arise). Here are a few to circle on your calendar:
- September 5 — Dutch Grand Prix
- October 24 — United States Grand Prix
- November 7 — Mexican Grand Prix
- December 12 — Abu Dhabi Grand Prix (final event of the year; possibly with the championship on the line)
How To Bet Formula 1 Online
When it comes to the best online sportsbooks for betting on Formula 1, it’s hard to argue with the list below. These bookmakers have every F1 bet you need — futures, weekly race winners, props, and everything in between. Better yet, the bets are offered at among the best prices around.
That also means these betting sites could effectively be a one-stop-shop for F1 wagering. No need to jump from bookie to bookie to find better gambling lines or specific bets. It’s all under one roof, which is always a time-saver for a bettor — time, we might add, you could better use researching your betting picks anyway.
If that doesn’t sound good enough, how about one more perk. The betting sites underneath also have promotional bonuses available to new and repeat players. These bonuses can net players hundreds to thousands of dollars in free play, no strings attached!
The table below features sign-up bonuses currently on the table. These are the most lucrative offers and are available to first-time players of a site. To claim your big-money bonus, just hit one of the “play now” buttons below. This will lead you to the betting site, where you can complete the sign-up process and earn a hefty payout in a few short minutes!