French Grand Prix Betting Tips & Preview – Sunday 24th June 2018

F1 Race Track

The World Cup threatens to take centre-stage this summer, but we have our eyes on the classic battle between England and Germany taking place in F1. Will the dominant world champion take the glory yet again, or can the returning hero end years of hurt to return to glory? In this case, it’s English success under threat, as Lewis Hamilton faces a battle to retain his Drivers’ Championship title ahead of the French Grand Prix this weekend.

After a thrilling race in Canada earlier this month, the Formula 1 campaign returns to Europe. The sport is also making a big return to France, ahead of the first race here since 2008. Will that be marked by another Ferrari victory? We can see them marking their territory at the top, with problems mounting at Mercedes.

Top Tips

Sebastian Vettel to win @ 13/8

Odds correct at time of writing but may have changed since. Check site for latest prices.

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Race Info

There’s a change in scenery for F1’s return to France, which has moved close to Marseille at the Circuit Paul Ricard. The previous home was in central France, near the towns of Magny-Cours and Nevers. Moving south sticks those poor drivers into the warmth of the French coast in summer, which is expected to be brimming with sunshine throughout the weekend.

RoundCountryCircuitRace Distance
8/21 France Circuit Paul Ricard 309km / 53 Laps


 DateStart TimeFinish TimeForecast ConditionsTV Coverage
Practice 1 Fri 22nd June 11:00 12:30 Dry / 27° -
Practice 2 Fri 22nd June 15:00 16:30 Dry / 32° -
Practice 3 Sat 23rd June 12:00 13:30 Dry / 25° -
Qualifying Sat 23rd June 15:00 16:00 Dry / 26° Sky F1
Race Sun 24th June 14:10 16:10 Dry / 25° Sky F1

Previous Race Results (2008)

It’s been so long since F1 was in France, that the points system has entirely changed. Vettel’s win in Canada last week earned him more than double what Felipe Massa received in the 2008 French GP. There were a total of 39 points on offer in that race, while there’s 43 points handed out to the top two alone this weekend. It’s quite a shift, but it shows how the sport has moved on.

Plenty of the top 10 from 2008’s race have moved on, too. There are a few names who stick out, including Kimi Raikkonen. He was second fiddle for Ferrari 10 years ago too, and he’ll be aiming for another 1-2 with Vettel this time around. Lewis Hamilton was a distant 10th in his last race here, which added no points to his title winning season.

PositionDriverCarGrid PositionPoints
1 Felipe Massa Ferrari 2 10
2 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1 8
3 Jarno Trulli Toyota 4 6
4 Heikki Kovalainen McClaren-Mercedes 10 5
5 Robert Kubica BMW Sauber 10 4
6 Mark Webber Red Bull 6 3
7 Nelson Piquet Jr Renault 9 2
8 Fernando Alonso Renault 3 1
9 David Coulthard Red Bull 7 0
10 Lewis Hamilton McClaren-Mercedes 13 0

Race News: Red Bull Out for New Wings

Following a mixed weekend in Canada, Red Bull announced that they’ll be switching to a Honda engine next season. They said that data collected at the Canadian GP influenced the decision, although they did have Max Verstappen make the podium in that trip. He was some way ahead of sixth placed Daniel Ricciardo, who missed a wonderful chance to close in on the leaders in that race.

Are Mercedes Bluffing Again?

It’s been a tough year for Mercedes, but not quite as tough as they’d have you believe. The once all-confident, driving force in F1 have aired a few too many problems this campaign. They’ve used the rise of Red Bull and Ferrari to write themselves off, and take the pressure off themselves. However, Valtteri Bottas’s recent admission that they need to improve all areas of the car feels different. It does feel like there’s some truth in his claim that Mercedes aren’t favourites to win this race, despite the bookies pricing it up that way.

Analysis: Big Weekend for Ferrari and Vettel

With issues at Red Bull and Mercedes, this feels like a real chance for Ferrari. They are by far the most successful team at the French Grand Prix, with double the wins of any other rival. They’ve racked up 17 victories on French soil, including the last three races before the Grand Prix was removed from the calendar.

They have to continue that impressive run, especially as there’s just a point between the top two as things stand. Mercedes are aiming to upgrade in the coming weeks, so they will provide a renewed threat down the line. This is a massive test for Ferrari, and we expect them to rise to the challenge when they get to the Circuit Paul Ricard.

Final Verdict: Vettel to win

You can get odds of 13/8 on either Vettel or Hamilton to win this race, but we have to go with the former. While he’s been struggling for wins of late, he did manage back to back victories to start off the season. This seems like a good chance to add to that, and with his rivals in poor form Vettel should take maximum points on Sunday. After four poles in six, we are backing him to top qualifying too at 5/4, while Valtteri Bottas seems a good pick for a top three finish, despite his worries. He’s finished second at four of the last six races, and he’s 5/4 for a top three finish this weekend.

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