Congratulations to any punters who picked out Felipe Massa to record his first pole since 2008 in Austria, but for F1’s next thrilling instalment at Silverstone our crystal ball is predicting no such glitch in the matrix.
The Austrian Grand Prix proved to be a truly stellar weekend for British-based Williams, where a wholly unexpected grid one-two was followed up with a podium finish for Valterri Bottas.
It was just rewards for Finnish driver Bottas who has outperformed his more decorated teammate this season, where he’s managed to make the second row of the grid on three other occasions.
For that reason, the 20/1 about Bottas recording a first ever pole holds more attraction than Massa’s odds to gain a 17th-career start from the front.
However, as Massa himself has alluded to ahead of his 200th Grand Prix, their Mercedes engine may only take the Williams cars so far at the speedy Silverstone circuit where their inferior chassis could lose them vital downforce.
Of course, all eyes will be on Mercedes once again and after a one-two last year the status quo is expected to return in Northamptonshire.
Lewis Hamilton will clearly be desperate to get back to the front of the grid after a three-race absence in which mistakes have crept in.
Having run wide on the final bend at Austria’s Redbull Ring, the Brit could only manage a ninth-place start which ultimately cost him the race win.
A former winner and pole-grabber last year, the 4/7 favourite certainly knows what it takes at the British Grand Prix but the pressure of battling Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg appears to be affecting Hamilton more and that will only be amplified with expectant Silverstone crowds.
Considering Rosberg was only pipped by four tenths of a second in 2013 and has out qualified him in the last three races, the 7/4 on the German to take pole has to be taken with glee here.
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