With just 5 races to go in the Formula 1 season, it is beginning to look as though we may already have a winner. Yes, Lewis Hamilton still has some work to do before he can once again be crowned champion, but with a 50 point lead over Sebastian Vettel at this stage of the season, it looks as though it’s only a matter of time before Hamilton repeats as champion and locks up his 4th title in 5 years, just as the F1 odds indicated at the beginning of the season. He will get a chance to add to his point total this weekend when the F1 drivers head to the Suzuka International Racing Course for the 2018 Japanese Grand Prix.
As always, it will probably be either Hamilton or Vettel that wins, but let’s take a look at a couple of other drivers here besides those two.
2018 Japanese Grand Prix Odds & Expert Prediction
5.0 G ➡️5.1 G ⬅️4.5 G ➡️After so many years and thousands of laps, Suzuka still casts a spell 💫“This circuit always feels amazing in these cars” – @alo_oficial 👌“Best roller coaster ride I’ve felt in an F1 car” – @LewisHamilton 🎢#JapaneseGP #F1 @awscloud pic.twitter.com/9k7pp8vZIf— Formula 1 (@F1) 5 de octubre de 2018
- Number of times held: 43
- First held: 1963
- Most wins (drivers): Michael Schumacher (6)
- Most wins (constructors): McLaren (9)
- Circuit length: 5.807 km
- Race length: 307.573 km
- Laps: 53
- 2018 Japanese Grand Prix Odds: -175
A brilliant practice run on Friday has put Hamilton on the brink of capturing the pole position for the big race on Sunday. It would only be the second time that he has earned that spot at this track and doing so would certainly put him in a spot where his task of winning becomes a little easier.
Not that winning has been a problem for the Englishman this season. Hamilton has taken the checkered flag 8 times this season, including coming out on top in 5 of the last 6 Grand Prix races. He has taken a staggering 161 points out of a possible 175 of late, which has seen him surge to an almost unassailable lead atop the driver standings. I think he will do it again this weekend.
- 2018 Japanese Grand Prix Odds: +320
The 2018 season for Vettel is turning out to be a lot like what happened to his last season. Vettel came storming out of the gate, winning the opening 2 races of the season, but since then he has only managed to take the checkered flag 3 more times, with the latest win coming in Belgium back in August.>
Vettel is not yet mathematically eliminated from winning the driver’s championship, but he would probably need to win out and hope that Lewis had a few off days, which is not a scenario that is likely to happen.
- 2018 Japanese Grand Prix Odds: +1200
Outside of Hamilton and Vettel, only two other drivers have picked up a win in Formula 1 this season, with Verstappen being one of them.
His lone win of the year came back in July at the Austrian Grand Prix, the lone high point of the season for the Dutch driver. He currently sits in 5th with 158 points in the standings and is obviously well out of the race to become champion this season.
- 2018 Japanese Grand Prix Odds: +2000
If there is one driver who could potentially spring the upset this weekend, it may well be the Australian. He has 2 wins this season, taking the checkered flag in China and Monaco.
Both of those wins came in the early part of the season and it has been slim pickings since then. Even though he has more wins than Verstappen, he still finds himself sitting behind the Dutchman in 6th. He certainly has a shot here but is more likely to be looking at a top 5 finish.
Last 10 Winners
- 2017: Lewis Hamilton
- 2016: Nico Rosberg
- 2015: Lewis Hamilton
- 2014: Lewis Hamilton
- 2013: Sebastian Vettel
- 2012: Sebastian Vettel
- 2011: Jenson Button
- 2010: Sebastian Vettel
- 2009: Sebastian Vettel
- 2008: Fernando Alonso