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Monza markets make no sense according to history books
Wednesday 04th September 2013, 11:41 by TF1T Staff
Monza is a noted leader's circuit so Italian Grand Prix punters should note the major discrepancies in the race winner and pole sitter markets and bet accordingly.
It makes no sense whatsoever that bookmakers have chalked up Lewis Hamilton as their favourite to occupy pole position in the Italian Grand Prix yet they have the Briton well behind Sebastian Vettel in betting on the race itself. Not only is Hamilton bidding to qualify fastest for the fifth event in a row having been the pole sitter in Belgium, Germany, Hungary and the United Kingdom but also he won last year's Italian Grand Prix by more than four seconds from Sergio Perez.
Bookmakers are quite correct to have Hamilton as the Italian Grand Prix qualifying favourite, with BetVictor.com and SportsBettingOnline.net offering the best available odds of 2.75/1. Hamilton was almost two-tenths of a second quicker than every other driver in the Belgian Grand Prix qualifying competition and either the Briton or his Mercedes teammate, Nico Rosberg, has been the pole sitter in eight of the last nine races. Also, Mercedes-powered cars have a very good record on the Monza track going back a number of years.
But bookmakers are crazy to quote Hamilton at odds of 2.75 and lower to start the Italian Grand Prix from pole position and offer odds of 5.00 about him winning the race. The 5.00 about Hamilton is available from many bookmakers, including 888sport, Coral and Unibet. History says that those odds are generous if one thinks that the qualifying market is right.
Last year, Hamilton became the third Italian Grand Prix pole sitter in succession to take the chequered flag first when he dominated the race, only giving up the lead temporarily due to a pit stop. Vettel won the 2011 Italian Grand Prix from pole position very easily, leading for the majority of the contest. And Fernando Alonso took out the 2010 Italian Grand Prix having been the driver in the best starting spot.
Had Hamilton not had an accident in the 2009 Italian Grand Prix and blown his chances of converting pole position into race success, each of the last six Monza events would have been won by the fastest qualifier. Rubens Barrichello in a Mercedes-powered Brawn was the exception to the rule. If one goes back 10 years, only two pole sitters have failed to get maximum championship points - Hamilton in 2009 and Kimi Raikkonen in 2006. Hamilton crashed and limped to the finish in 12th place, while Raikkonen was thrashed everyone except Michael Schumacher. Pole is the key to winning in Italy.
If Hamilton is over the odds to win the Italian Grand Prix then so is Rosberg, who is 11/1 with Bwin and Spreadex but less than half that price to be the fastest qualifier for Sunday's race. Rosberg has won two of this year's 11 Formula One events so he knows what to do when the opportunity to win presents itself. Rosberg has won more races this season than all bar Vettel (four wins) and Alonso (two wins).
Turning one's attention to Italian Grand Prix match bets, the best of them from a punting perspective revolve around opposing Mark Webber, who has not experienced any decent results at Monza during his Formula One career, including during his six previous years as a Red Bull driver. Webber has not finished higher than sixth place in his 11 Italian Grand Prix appearances, with his Red Bull starts producing one sixth, one eighth, one ninth, one 20th and two failures to finish. And Webber's recent results are ordinary as well.
In the expectation of a strong Mercedes performance in the Italian Grand Prix, Rosberg appeals at odds of 2.10 with SportsBettingOnline.net to beat Webber. Since joining Mercedes ahead of the 2010 Formula One season, Rosberg has beaten Webber in two of the three Monza events. Rosberg should be the favourite.
Webber should be the underdog against Raikkonen as well but Bwin is offering the Finn at odds of 1.95 to get the better of the Australian in the Italian Grand Prix. Raikkonen has not sprayed champagne to celebrate victory at Monza but he has performed creditably, including three podium finishes in his last five cracks at the high-speed track near Milan.
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