The F1 action is coming thick and fast at the moment with back-to-back race weekends as the teams head from Belgium to the Netherlands for the Ducth Grand Prix. Can anyone put the brakes on the Dutchman’s title charge? Darry Worthington previews.
Dutch Grand Prix
Sunday 4 September
CM.com Circuit Zandvoort
To Win Race Outright
Max Verstappen 5/10
Charles LeClerc 4/1
Carlos Sainz 10/1
Sergio Perez 12/1
Lewis Hamilton 14/1
George Russell 16/1
Class! That’s the only way to describe Max Verstappen’s victory at Spa. Yes, the Red Bull ace did benefit from the early retirement of Lewis Hamilton, who collided with Ferando Alosnso, but to take a car from 14th on the Grid and bring it across the line ahead of everyone takes something special.
Things got even better for Red Bull this past weekend as Sergio Perez managed to claim second and ensure a Red Bull one-two. The Red Bulls were joined on the podium by the Ferrari of Carlos Sainz, who managed to negotiate an incident-filled race to claim vital points for his team.
George Russel ensured Mercedes would be in the points even if his teammate had crashed out, as the Mercedes rookie claimed a vital fourth-place finish. He was joined in the top 6 by Fernando Alonso, who recovered well from his early incident with Lewis Hamilton, and Charles LeClerc.
Esteban Ocon and Sebastian Vettel took full advantage of Bottas and Hamilton’s retirements as they managed to claim seventh and eighth. The remaining points scoring positions went to Pierre Gasly (ninth) and Alexander Albon (tenth).
Track - Circuit Zandvoort
There are a few parallels we can draw between Circuit Zandvoort and the grand old home of golf, St. Andrews. Both are built on the coast, exposed to onshore wind with the surroundings beautifully contrasted by lush greenery and white sand dunes.
In terms of the track, it’s a proper old-school test similar to that of Spa. The drivers love the pace and the sweeping corners- especially turns 7, 8, 9 and 10.
Another fun thing to keep an eye out for is the banking angle at Tarzan corner to 18 degrees. Expect an absolute vibe with tens of thousands of Verstappen fans to turn the galleries into a sea of orange.
Podium Finish Yes – George Russel @ 9/4
Russell struggled here last year having a poor qualifying stint and then having to retire on lap 11 due to a gearbox failure. He’s in a completely different car this time around and he’s been registering some good results in that Mercedes of his claiming fourth in Belgium, third in Hungary and third in France. He’s certainly worth having a crack on for another podium finish here.
To Win Race Outright
Max Verstappen @ 5/10
You simply cannot go against Verstappen here. He was the man in the Netherlands last year and he illustrated just that he can do it with the odds stacked against him as he illustrated last weekend by taking race honours while starting 14th on the grid. Bet against the hometown hero at your peril.