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PREVIEW: Red Bull switch attention to Constructors’ Championship as F1 heads stateside

Max Verstappen may have claimed the F1 Drivers’ Championship title last time out in Japan, but Red Bull still has business to attend to as they’re gunning for their first Constructors’ Championship in nine years.

Charles Leclerc of Ferrari - F1
Image Copyright - Steve Haag Sports

Max Verstappen may have claimed the F1 Drivers' Championship title last time out in Japan, but Red Bull still has business to attend to as they're gunning for their first Constructors' Championship in nine years.

Two women looking excitedly at cellphone

United States Grand Prix
Sunday 24 October
Circuit of the Americas

To Win Race Outright

Max Verstappen 9/20
Charles LeClerc 5/1
Lewis Hamilton 8/1
Sergio Perez 9/1
George Russell 14/1

Previous Race

Max Verstappen made it to back-to-back Drivers’ Championships and assured he would still remain a World Champion even if the FIA stripped him of last year’s title, by claiming first place in a rain-affected Japanese Grand Prix.

The Red Bull ace brought his car past the chequered flag ahead of teammate Sergio Perez, who claimed second, and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, who rounded out the podium.

With the proceedings called off after just 28 laps, a number of drivers would benefit from the race being shortened with Esteban Ocon sitting fourth, Lewis Hamilton fifth and Sebastian Vettel in sixth when the race was abandoned.

The remaining points-scoring positions went to veteran Fernando Alonso (seventh), George Russel – who had a torrid race weekend – took eighth, followed by Nicholas Latifi (ninth) and Lando Norris (tenth).

Track - Circuit of the Americas

Circuit of the Americas 2022

The Circuit of the Americas compound can hold just under 120 000 spectators and sells out year on year. It’s quite the sight and is the only circuit that provides that sort of crazy atmosphere.

Sunday’s race will see the field cover 308.405 kilometres over fifty-six laps which contain twenty corners. The first corner, which starts a hairpin turn, is the track’s most infamous bend. While the corner itself is tricky to negotiate, it is made harder by the 40-metre climb that leads into the turn.

Another set of corners that will provide a challenge is the sequence between turns three to six; they’re inspired by the Maggots and Becketts sequence at Silverstone, and like their colonial cousins, they’re more than capable of catching drivers out.

Last year’s race was won by Red Bull with Max Verstappen claiming the win and Sergio Perez finishing third. Sandwiched between the duo was the Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton.

In terms of the weather for this weekend, sunny skies are being forecast for the most part with only a small amount of rain set to fall late on Sunday evening which shouldn’t affect the race.

Best Bet

Lewis Hamilton – Podium – Yes – 1/1

The Brit has a sensational record at the track, winning six races here. He’s found success rather hard to come by here in recent years having last won at the Circuit of the Americas in 2017.

He has managed to claim a couple podiums here during that time without a win finishing third in 2018 and second in 2019 and last season. I’m on the Brit to finish in the top three once again.

To Win Race Outright

Sergio Perez 9/1

With Max Verstappen having sealed the Drivers’ Championship, Red Bull will shift their focus to ensuring Perez claims second place, with the Red Bull number two currently only a point clear of Ferrari’s Charles LeClerc.

I reckon Red Bull will get very tactical this weekend and they could well aim to bring Perez home first.

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