Formula One World Championship heads to Silverstone Circuit in England on Sunday for the 10th round of the 2021 season. Having won four of the last five races, Max Verstappen is well in the clear ahead of Lewis Hamilton, who will hope the support from the home fans can help him to his fourth victory on the season.
Perhaps, the change of how the qualifying works will help Hamilton. This weekend, we will see the first of three Sprint Races making its debut at the 2021 British Grand Prix.
Friday’s qualifying will use the standard Q1, Q2, Q3 format, the finishing position of which will then be used to distribute the drivers on the grid for a sprint race on Saturday. The sprint race will take place over 17 laps, with the finishing position of the drivers determining the starting grid for Sunday’s race.
The top three drivers of the sprint race will also receive Championship Points, with one point awarded to third- and two points to the second-placed driver, while the winner will pocket all three points. Will the changed format affect the outcome of the race, however, remains to be seen.
Hamilton Looking For His Fourth W
Hamilton’s run through the 2021 season has been disappointing. As the most dominant Formula One driver for a good portion of the last decade, the Brit has managed only three wins.
To make matters worse, Hamilton has not won a single race since the Spanish Grand Prix in May. He has since finished on the podium only twice, at the French Grand Prix (2nd) and the Styrian Grand Prix (2nd).
Despite his iffy showing, Hamilton should feel confident. He is the most successful driver at the Silverstone Circuit, having won here six times since 2014.
During that stretch, Hamilton’s worst placement was runner-up in 2018 and 2020, when he finished behind Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen, respectively.
Verstappen High On Confidence
Max Verstappen travels to England as the current Formula One frontrunner. He has accumulated 182 points, which puts him 32 points ahead of Hamilton on the Drivers’ Championship standings.
With five wins and eight podiums, the Dutch should feel confident in his chances to add his ninth win on Sunday. He was exceptional in Austria and has yet to show any signs of slowing down.
What an incredible win! 🔥 Simply an amazing job by @redbullracing and @HondaRacingF1 🙏🏻 Let’s keep this up! Insane to see the Orange Army out in full force, this one was for you 🧡 #AustrianGP 🇦🇹 pic.twitter.com/fYxAuNpBDp
— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) July 4, 2021
What’s more, Verstappen had already won here in 2020 when he spoiled Hamilton’s plans of winning the prestigious 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, and if his form on the season is any indication, the 23-year-old should be more than capable of emulating that success.
“It’s going to be a long season, and we cannot afford to make any big mistakes,” said Verstappen.
Knowing how far ahead of Hamilton he is, Verstappen’s success will rely solely on making as few errors as possible. That definitely hasn’t been his strong suit last term, but it is Mercedes that is making crucial mistakes in 2021, eventually leading to a significant gap in the overall standings.
While Verstappen and Hamilton battle for the gold medal, the third-place finish will be up for grabs as four drivers line up to join the two frontrunners on the podium.
While there are several drivers who are more than capable of securing a bronze medal for themselves, there are only two that caught our attention. Valtteri Bottas has been driving well of late, claiming back-to-back podiums in Austria.
He finished third in the Styrian Grand Prix and added a runner-up finish in the Austrian Grand Prix a week later. The Finn also drove well here last year but missed out on a podium due to a tire puncture.
Lando Norris is another underdog to keep an eye on. He showed excellent driving at Silverstone in 2020, finishing P5, and now travels to his home country following a fifth- and a third-place finish in Austria.
Expecting Norris to win his first race of the season on Sunday seems a bit too optimistic; however, he should definitely be considered as a solid online bet on the podium market at +275.
Pick: Lando Norris Podium Finish (+275)
However, when it comes to picking out a winner for the race, you can’t go wrong with Max Verstappen. He has been in exceptional form, and while beating Hamilton on his home track definitely won’t come easy, the Mad Max has done it before.