Money Line: Who’s betting on who for F1’s curtain-raiser?

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The new Formula One season is finally here. Months and weeks of building, planning and testing will come to a head this weekend. But who are the punters fancying to come good in Australia?

Lewis Hamilton is the 5/4 favourite to win the race, which suggests little has changed in the off-season.

It’s certainly convinced one customer, who has slapped down a solid £800 on the Brit coming home first for Mercedes in Melbourne.

But Hamilton isn’t the best-backed contender when it comes to number of bets placed. That honour goes to Sebastian Vettel.

After both the German and Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen posted scintillating times in testing, fans are going in hard on a Vettel win at 3/1.

Raikkonen hasn’t won a race since taking the victory at Albert Park in 2013, but that hasn’t stopped customers making the Finn the third-best backed driver this weekend at a handy 6/1.

The 2007 champion has taken more bets than either Red Bull drivers, with both Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo sounding out lukewarm vibes about their chances.

But we’ve still taken more money on that duo than Mercedes new-boy Valtteri Bottas.

Up against the might of Hamilton at the Silver Arrows, the betting suggests there isn’t too much money for the former Williams man.

Those six dominate the market, with Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso proving the best of the rest.

There’s certainly some logic to backing the popular Brazilian at 50/1 this weekend, after posting impressive times for Williams in the winter.

But with our traders offering 2/1 on both McLarens to not even finish the race, Alonso supporters may well be left disappointed come Sunday.

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

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