We’ve taken a little extra time with this article because we’ve taken the time to not only deliver a recap of the Bahrain Grand Prix, but we’ve reanalyzed preseason testing and the entire race weekend. We’ve done this because we think there are seeds of betting patterns ready to bud and blossom over the rest of the 2023 Formula 1 season.
No, the pattern is not to take #1 to finish P1 every race and for Red Bull to win the Constructors’ Championship again. Although, you should probably take Max and Red Bull to win a second double championship on future odds.
We’ll take you through what we’ve seen over six days of on-track action to help inform your Formula 1 betting picks going forward.
Take Red Bull to Win Everything…For Now
Did Red Bull’s race pace crush the entire field in Bahrain? Without question, yes. We adore the RB-19 from a design aspect as it looks fast when parked and is fast on the track.
The all-conquering 2022 RB-18 gave Red Bull the best package to evolve from for the 2023 season. The gorgeously designed RB-19 also has one of the most consistent and fast drivers on the grid in the cockpit. The combination of Verstappen and the RB-19 might be untouchable throughout the 2023 season.
However, Red Bull’s CFD and ATR restrictions for the 2021 cost cap infringement will factor into their developments and pace later this season. This should give rivals Ferrari, Mercedes, and Aston Martin chances to bridge the performance gap.
The real question is will Red Bull have a secure grip on both titles early enough in the season to mitigate their testing – and, in turn, development – restrictions and focus on 2024 before anyone catches them?
Will Red Bull win every race this season? No, but in all honesty, they could come close.
If they get the set-up right, should they crush everyone on race pace until someone bridges the performance gap? Yes.
If you haven’t picked Verstappen and Red Bull on futures betting lines to win the Drivers and Constructors Championship, you might want to get on it before the odds start hitting minus numbers.
Qualifying is a Different Story
On race pace, the RB-19 has been dominant and impressive since the first long-run simulations of practice. However, on a single-lap pace, Red Bull can be challenged.
During Q1 of the Bahrain Grand Prix, the field was spread by 1.2 seconds. That is incredibly close, and something Formula 1 has never seen.
While Max and Checo did lock out the front row, the best one-lap driver in Formula 1, Charles Leclerc, didn’t take a second crack at pole position, leaving only the Red Bulls and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz to fight for pole position.
As the Mercs, Ferraris, and, yes, Aston Martins adds performance, any of the top four teams’ drivers will be able to claim pole position, and it is far more of a crap shoot than in previous years.
Aston Martin is for Real…For Real
Full disclosure time: our favorite racing driver of all time is Fernando Alonso. He’s the best, and if you are new to Formula 1, we’re welcoming as many people onto the Alonso-Aston Martin hype train as possible!
The talk of Formula 1 in 2023 is Aston Martin’s AMR-23. With former Red Bull aerodynamicist Dan Fallows guiding technical development, Fernando Alonso behind the wheel, and “inspiration” from the RB-18 and SF-75 of 2022, Aston Martin has improved by 2.7 seconds over last year’s season debut.
Aston Martin is firmly in the mix at the front of the pack, mixing it up with the Ferraris and Mercedes, and has to be considered for any top six betting picks every weekend, with Alonso and Stroll to challenge and take a pole position or two this season.
Oh, Ferrari and Changes Incoming for the W-14
While the worries of tire degradation and race pace proved entirely true during the Bahrain Grand Prix, Ferrari’s reliability woes continued into the 2023 season.
Charles Leclerc took new hybrid components heading into the first race but did not finish as the power unit failed. Carlos Sainz told Ferrari over the radio if he pushed as requested, he wouldn’t make it to the end of the race.
Ferrari needs to improve their reliability to be more than a threat for pole position and a top-six finish.
As for the Mercs, It’s time we had a talk about your problems, and we think you need to give up this zero-pods habit.
The good news for Mercedes fans is that there are planned changes to the W-14, among which should be a sidepod change and design philosophy to correct the flawed concept and push Mercedes back toward the front. However, these changes aren’t expected until race four or five of the season.
Race four or five is also where the actual 2023 McLaren will hit the track, with an enormous gap to bridge to be competitive in the midfield in 2023.
Ryan has been one of the leading sports business & iGaming professionals for over 15 years. He started as a freelance writer and now operates one of the top sports content agencies around, Knup Solutions. He has literally written 10,000 plus sports and betting related articles across the web.
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