The 2018 Italian Grand Prix will take place at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza in Monza, Italy on September 2nd. It is the 14th race in the 2018 FIA Formula One World Championship calendar and represents the 88th rendition of the Italian Grand Prix.
Together with the British Grand Prix, the Italian Formula 1 GP is the only Formula One World Championship that has taken place continuously since the championship was introduced in 1950. Since then, every Italian F1 GP race has been held at Monza except for 1980, when the race took place at Imola. Legendary driver Michael Schumacher has the most victories in the drivers’ category – 5, whereas Ferrari is the most successful team in the constructors’ category with 19 titles next to their name.
Last year, Lewis Hamilton took maximum points from the Italian Grand Prix and used his pole position to maximum effect by winning the race. Almost five seconds behind him came his Mercedes teammate, the Finn Valtteri Bottas, whereas his main rival Sebastian Vettel was full 36 seconds behind the Englishman and finished in the last of the podium positions.
Lewis Hamilton started last year’s Italian Grand Prix seven points behind Sebastian Vettel, but after the race was concluded he was three points ahead. This year Sebastian Vettel is in similar position as he trails Hamilton by 17 points and will definitely be hoping that he can reduce that difference. It is a similar situation in the constructor standings, where Mercedes is on 375 points and Vettel’s Ferrari is on 360 points.
Can Lewis Hamilton Notch his 6th Victory of the Season In Italy?
Hamilton’s first victory of the season came in Azerbaijan, which was actually the fourth round of the 2018 Formula One Championship. This slow start didn’t seem to have an effect on Hamilton’s title ambitions as he followed that success with victories in Spain, France, Germany, and most recently in Hungary.
Hamilton has expressed his determination to stay ahead of his German rival in the remaining eight races of the F1 Championship, but has also admitted that he is slightly worried by Ferrari’s speed on the straights. However, he once again reaffirmed that he would take each race individually and try to get the maximum available points until the end of the season.
If you think that Hamilton can make the Italian Grand Prix the sixth place where he won the podium this year, you can back him at some rather enticing odds. Both EnergyBet and LVBet give him odds of 2 to take first place in Italy, while Redzonesports have him at 41/20 to do the same. SportPesa give the Englishman odds of 23/10 to top the standings in Monza, while Fun88 go for odds of 2/1.
Or Will It be Vettel’s 6th Victory of the Season?
Sebastian Vettel is currently on 214 points, while Hamilton is on 231. This 17 points difference is not because of the fact that Vettel has won less first places this year, but because he was slightly worse than Hamilton when not winning his races. In fact, Vettel has exactly the same number of victories as Hamilton, having won at the initial two races in Australia and Bahrain, and then in Canada and Great Britain. His last victory came last week when he triumphed in Belgium in a race in which his superior Ferrari used the tricky race conditions to make the most out of it.
Vettel has three victories in Monza, one less than Hamilton, but one feels that he will make it four this year, especially if you take into consideration the showing of his superior Ferrari engine in Belgium. This seems to be what the bookmakers are feeling as well as they make the German their main favourite for victory in Italy. EnergyBet and LVBet give the German odds of 6/7 to triumph in Italy, while Redzonesports give Vettel 20/27. Fun88 and SportPesa give identical odds of 5/7.
Can Kimi Raikkonen Record his First Victory Since 2013?
Kimi Raikkonen is currently third in the standings with a substantial deficit of 85 points behind leader Lewis Hamilton. The once legendary driver still has the drive to do big things in races, but his last triumph at a Formula 1 race was back in 2013.
However, the Finnish F1 legend is considered as the third favourite to win the race according to bookmakers, but that’s only because the gap between the second and third driver is so huge and so pronounced.
If you think that Kimi can do the unthinkable and notch a victory in Italy, you can get some pretty good odds. EnergyBet and LVBet give punters the chance to make a good profit if they back Raikkonen as they price the Finn at 5. Redzonesports, SportPesa, and Fun88 do the same and give Raikkonen rather generous odds of 19/4.
Will Valtteri Bottas Spring a Surprise?
Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate, Valtteri Bottas is fourth in the driver standings, only 2 points behind compatriot Kimi Raikkonen. The Mercedes driver has been winless so far this year so backing him to win in Italy is quite a long shot.
However, Bottas had a pretty decent showing in Italy last year when he came second and was part of a one-two Mercedes victory in which the two Mercedes drivers were separated by less than 5 seconds. This means that the Finnish driver can be considered as a dark horse in this race and if you decide to back him, you are bound to get some good odds which can multiply your deposit by quite a lot.
For example, bookmakers such as Redzonesports, Fun88 and SportPesa give Bottas amazingly high odds of 39/4, while others such as LVBet and EnergyBet do the same and give the Finnish driver odds of 10.
Max Verstappen – Possible Winner with an Outside Chance?
Max Verstappen is fifth in the standings with 120 points and is, realistically, probably the last possible candidate that can win the Italian Grand Prix. The Dutch driver has only one victory this year and that was when he won the Austrian Grand Prix in the beginning of July. However, his one victory is not something that one should frown upon as he is one of only four drivers who have won a race this year (the others being Hamilton, Vettel, and his Red Bull teammate Daniel Ricciardo).
This means that the Dutch driver knows how it feels when you win and how once you get that feeling you want to get some more. That’s why backing Verstappen to win the Italian Grand Prix can be a good idea if you are into backing dark horses and drivers who are not considered as the favourites to win a race.
Bookmakers certainly share this sentiment about Versappen and the odds they give him reflect the fact that they only see him as an outsider. Redzonesports, Fun88 and SportPesa go with odds of 21/1, while LVBet and EnergyBet opt for odds of 22.