Our F1 expert eyes a flourish from Ricciardo and Alonso in Abu Dhabi
19 races down, one to go. The 2017 Formula 1 season comes to an end this weekend in Abu Dhabi, with the final race taking place at the spectacular Yas Marina Circuit.
Having been the venue for title deciders in two of the past three years, the championships are all wrapped up, but there is still plenty to play for in the midfield.
With three teams all targeting victory to sign off the season in style as well, here are three markets to check out at the final round of the year.
Ricciardo to finish with a win @ 12/1
It has been a slightly strange year for Daniel Ricciardo, with his only win coming in the chaos of Baku while team-mate Max Verstappen has excelled in recent races and been the main threat to Mercedes and Ferrari.
However, Ricciardo has a relatively fresh power unit after taking a penalty in Brazil, and Red Bull will be going all out to finish with a win after being a bit conservative in the last race.
Without altitude to worry about, the Renault engine should run more reliably and the end of season form should make it a threat for victory.
Alonso to set the fastest lap @ 40/1
This isn’t quite as crazy as it sounds, because Alonso actually has one fastest lap to his name already this season.
The McLaren-Honda has been more competitive of late courtesy of the latest power unit specification, but it is still down on power.
In Abu Dhabi, two stops have been the norm in recent years but this year’s harder tyre compounds could make a one-stop the preferred option.
So with other drivers looking after their tyres more, don’t rule out a frustrated Alonso (as he so often is due to the lack of Honda performance) to stop twice and use fresh rubber late in the race to set the fastest lap.
Ericsson to make Q2 @ 6/4
It hasn’t been an easy season for Sauber, with the team at times well over a second off the pace of the rest of the midfield.
However, recently the team’s performance has picked up, with Q2 becoming a more realistic target.
Ericsson has only made it through to Q2 on two occasions this year, but his personal trend has been to finish strongly in each of his three seasons in F1, so he could sneak through on Saturday.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.