Following victory on home soil at the British Grand Prix two weeks ago, Lewis Hamilton again looks well-placed to top the podium at this weekend’s German Grand Prix 2019 (Race: 9.10am ET Sunday).
Any hopes that Mercedes’ difficult weekend in Austria would herald a more competitive championship were dashed at Silverstone. Their drivers qualified first and second on Saturday and then comfortably finished first and second in Sunday’s race.
Valtteri Bottas had pipped Hamilton to pole position in qualifying, but it was Hamilton who emerged victorious on race day. A longer first stint allowed him to move onto a one-stop strategy aided by a safety car period that provided him with what was almost a free stop. From there, it was a relatively straightforward victory, his seventh of the season.
Mercedes have won nine of the 10 races so far this year. They are clearly the favorites with the offshore betting sites for USA players to do so again at their home race this weekend, having won each of the last three German Grand Prix (in 2018, 2016 and 2014). Hamilton has four triumphs in the event to his credit (three at this weekend’s venue, the Hockenheimring), including victory from 14th on the grid last year. He has finished ahead of teammate Bottas in five of the last six races.
There is, though, little value to be found in backing Hamilton to take another win this weekend. You’ll struggle to get better than -150 (4/6) with the bookmakers. Indeed, there could be some value to be found in backing his teammate Bottas to beat him to pole position.
Hamilton has out-qualified Bottas six to four so far this year, but the average gap between them has been just 0.076 seconds. Only three sets of teammates have been more closely matched. Bottas also has the stronger record in qualifying at the Hockenheimring. He has qualified ahead of his teammate of the time in all three of his previous races there. Hamilton has been out-qualified by his teammate of the time in five of his six appearances. Bottas therefore looks to have a decent chance of again edging Hamilton to pole position.
Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc filled the final podium place at Silverstone. He received recompense for losing out during the safety car pitstop period by reclaiming the position he had held through the first stint when his teammate Sebastian Vettel ran into the back of the Red Bull of Max Verstappen, dropping Vettel down the field and leaving Verstappen to limp home fifth.
It was a fourth consecutive top-three finish for Leclerc, but his run may well come to an end in Germany. Mercedes can be expected to fill the top two steps of the podium and there will, therefore, only be one more place up for grabs. On current form, Verstappen is the most likely driver to fill it.
Red Bull have shown much improved pace since they introduced their new front wing in Austria. Verstappen won that race and also had sufficient speed to claim a podium at Silverstone had Vettel not crashed into him. Even Pierre Gasly was able to produce a solid performance in Great Britain, coming home fourth for his best finish of the year.
The team are confident that they will be very competitive this weekend. Verstappen has also shown himself to be a dab hand in wet conditions and rain is currently forecast for Sunday’s race. He has finished fourth and third respectively at the last two German Grand Prix and he can be fancied to find his way onto the podium on Sunday.
Sergio Perez has hung around the edges of the top 10 for Racing Point in each of the last five races without once being able to force his way into the points. His final finishing position of 17th in Great Britain didn’t tell the whole story. He had been running well, again on the precipice of the top 10, until a slightly clumsy clash with Hulkenberg following the safety car restart saw him lose his front wing, pit and drop back.
The team will introduce a significant upgrade package this weekend that they hope will allow them to challenge for points more regularly. Even if it just inches them a little closer to the pace of those ahead, Perez should be able to make the difference at a circuit in which he has always run well. He has finished in the points in each and every one of his four previous races at the Hockenheimring, including a seventh-place finish last year. Perez has a solid chance of finishing in the top 10 on Sunday.
Our Betting Preview’s F1 German GP Predictions & Picks Verdict
- Back Valtteri Bottas to take pole position (also known as ‘to win qualifying’ or ‘fastest qualifier’) @ best odds of +265 with Bookmaker.
- Bet on Max Verstappen to finish on the podium (top 3 finish) @ -120 with Bovada.
- Wager on Sergio Perez to finish in the points (top 10 finish) @ +200 (2/1) with Bovada or Intertops.