Whatever the developments in the 2014 drivers’ championship after the Japanese Grand Prix, the weekend’s biggest news will be Sebastian Vettel’s announcement he will be leaving Red Bull.
With Fernando Alonso due to vacate his Ferrari seat at the end of the season, there is zero doubt where the four-time world champion will be headed either.
Still, while that storyline will rumble on, there’s the small matter of picking out some juicy bets for the Japanese Grand Prix following another thrilling qualifying session.
Lewis Hamilton to win the race @ 5/4
Although the Brit was edged by Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg in qualifying (by a margin tipped up by this humble writer) the looming threat of Typhoon Phanfone could be the deciding factor at Suzuka.
Despite forecasters predicting the worst of the effects will not arrive in the area until Monday, bands of rain, some of them torrential, are still predicted for Sunday’s race.
Of the two Silver Arrows, Hamilton has proven time and again that he is the most adept at handling wet conditions and of the Stevenage native can steal a march at the lights then he’ll be extremely difficult to beat.
Fernando Alonso to finish in the top six @ 1/3
Having had to settle for fifth on the grid for the 25th time in Ferrari red, it’s little wonder the silky smooth Spaniard has finally decided to call it quits at the end of the season.
Alonso has milked his sub-standard car for all its worth again this season, but has still only stood on the podium twice during a frustrating campaign.
However, of the 13 races he’s completed, only twice has he ducked out of the top six-places on race day.
Daniel Ricciardo to finish on the podium @ 13/8
Let’s not forget Red Bull’s remaining driver has been the only man to have split the Mercedes duopoly on the chequered flag this season, twice no less.
The Australian has a knack of keeping out of trouble and getting himself into great positions despite a lack of race pace on the Silver Arrows and with Red Bull’s car better balanced than the Williams in wet conditions, he may well profit yet again.
Ricciardo shares the third row of the grid with Alonso.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £100 in free bets.