Formula One: Why tail-end charlies are great odds to score in Italy

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Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and co may steal the headlines in race after race, but this weekend we could see some lesser known names pick up not just column inches, but vital points.

Manor have one point to their name this season, courtesy of Pascal Werhlein’s 10th-place finish in Austria, but this weekend’s dash around the famous Monza circuit hands the Yorkshire squad a big opportunity to boost their tally.

That point-scoring result in Austria came courtesy of numerous factors, but a major role was the circuit’s layout massively favouring the Manor MRT05’s strengths while reducing its weaknesses.

Lacking the budget of the top teams, Manor struggle in the corners, but thanks to an engine deal with Mercedes and a slick design on the MRT05, they fly down the straights, with Renault’s Kevin Magnussen describing it as a ‘rocket ship’ earlier this year.

Austria’s Red Bull Ring possesses just eight corners, thus negating Manor’s weaknesses and allowing them to snatch that 10th spot.

And in terms of fewest corners on the calendar, the Italian Grand Prix is next up with 11. Throw in the historic long blasts through the Monza Park and Manor could be ripe for another points-stealing performance.

Werhlein has impressed this season, and but for some misfortune, could have been in the hunt for points in Belgium a week ago.

The reigning DTM champion won’t want to let another chance slip away, and the bookies make it 7/1 the German can land a second points finish of the season.

A change of team-mate may also see Werhlein up his game, with Esteban Ocon replacing Rio Haryanto for the rest of the campaign.

The 19-year-old beat Max Verstappen to win the 2014 Formula 3 European Championship, and after making his debut in Belgium, should be better prepared this weekend.

It’s 12/1 Ocon can score a world championship point in just his second race, but he’s got the ability, and this weekend at least, he might just have the car too.

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

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Richard Marsh

Richard loves his sport, especially if it involves the sound of tyres screaming around a race track. He's not fussy though and his '90s Premier League nostalgia and knowledge of team nicknames is tough to match.