First-lap shenanigans and need for safety car likely in Abu Dhabi

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Retirements haven’t been especially common in Formula One lately, as not since 11 races ago in Monaco have more than three drivers failed to finish a Grand Prix.

This statistic does give extra mileage to the 4/7 that there will be at least 19 classified finishers of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

However, there are reasons to suggest that this race could bring more trouble than some of the others to have gone before it.

First off, it is a race that starts in the day and finishes in the night, with the temperature changes potentially heightening the risk of driver error and car troubles.

The fact there are 21 turns at Yas Marina, which is the second most in the F1 season behind Singapore, brings a greater risk of accidents.

In two of the four previous renewals of the race, the safety car has been called onto the track on three occasions.

It is a potentially profitable 11/10 that the safety car is required again in Abu Dhabi in 2013.

Meanwhile, there is a reasonable possibility that this pay-out could be confirmed in the early laps at Yas Marina, as previous history suggests that it doesn’t take long for trouble to arrive.

In 2010, Michael Schumacher and Vitantonio Liuzzi collided on lap one, the following year Sebastian Vettel spun off the track at Turn 2 after gaining a puncture, which eventually caused his retirement on the second lap and then 12 months ago, Nico Hulkenberg didn’t see the end of the first lap after contact with Bruno Senna.

Therefore, it may be worth swerving the 4/9 on offer that there are no retirements on the opening lap in Abu Dhabi this year.

Instead, the 4/1 on one first-lap retirement has some appeal, while the 8/1 on exactly two retirements is a real possibility.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.