The first week of our triple-header of F1 action didn’t go to plan, with constant heavy rain in Belgium resulting in a wild qualifying session and the race fizzling out into 2 laps run behind the safety car for half points. That means very little movement in the championship before packing up and moving onto this weeks race in the Netherlands. I’m reliably informed (google) that the weather is much better this week, but we could see some rain on race day.
Formula 1 held races at the Zandvoort Circuit from 1948 until 1985, but are only making their return to Holland this year! It looks to be a fairly short and flowing track, with only a couple of tight sections. Obviously no one in the field has ever raced here, so not much history to look at.
With no relevant track form to go off, I’m turning to the weather forecast for my main angle on this event. We saw Max Verstappen put together a stunning lap in the rain for pole position last week, and got a good reminder that rain is a great equaliser in motorsports. George Russell, Dan Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel all putting their inferior cars into the top 5 on the grid.
Of course Lewis Hamilton is a tremendous talent himself, so it’s hard to choose one of he and Verstappen in the wet over a full race distance. Both are paying $2.10, and I’m going to lean towards Hamilton as I prefer him if the rain is not a factor, and can’t really split them if it is.
If it’s wet we’ll want to be on some long shots as well. Despite his crash in qualifying last week, I believe in the talent of Lando Norris and love his chances for a podium at $5. His comments before the race were still full of confidence, and I was certainly disappointed to miss a chance to see him flying through the pack in the miserable conditions.
Given qualifying looks dry I’m less interested in some of last weeks qualifying heroes who’ll find it hard to get to the pointy end of the race if starting much further back on the grid. Sebastian Vettel is one who could manage to strike the wet/dry balance nicely, so I’ll take him for a top 6 finish at $3.50, along with Pierre Gasly at the same price who has been solid all year and has just enough talent and car speed to take advantage of any chaos that unfolds ahead of him.
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Round 23 was an absolute classic round with several dramatic matches and some amazing results. The main Brownlow focus was Friday night's game where the two Brownlow favourites in Ollie Wines and Marcus Bontempelli went head to head! Check out our Round 23 Brownlow vote predictions here! read more
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