After one of the most topsy-turvy campaigns Formula One fans have ever enjoyed, narrow drivers’ championship leader Lewis Hamilton is once again favourite, at 9/10, to win the next Grand Prix, which is set for Japan.
Is he worth the risk at odds on?
Car – 10/10
Aside from a three-race spell between May and June, when Kimi Raikkonen, Felipe Massa and Sergio Perez took it in turns to share the Sunday’s fastest driver accolade, either Hamilton or Nico Rosberg have posted the fastest laps in every other Grand Prix.
Only Massa has deprived Mercedes of poll so far this season, so we can be fairly certain there’s nothing wrong with the 29-year-old Brit’s equipment.
Current form – 8/10
Hamilton may have passed the chequered flag first in each of the last two Grand Prix, but he didn’t dominate either race.
Rosberg clearly looked to atone for smashing into the back of his teammate in the previous round by letting him pass at Monza, while Sebastian Vettel led until seven laps from home last time out in Singapore.
2014 form – 7/10
After winning four of the first five Grand Prix of the season, Hamilton could only manage victory at his home event in seven races between June and July.
To be fair, the Stevenage native has only been off the podium three times all term, but that doesn’t get us anywhere closer to locating his chances of victory in Suzuka.
Past form at the circuit – 5/10
Hamilton hasn’t won the Japanese Grand Prix since his first attempt back in 2007, and that victory came at Fuji Speedway.
In six races since at Suzuka, Hamilton has podiumed twice, retired twice and finished fifth twice, with both of his top-three placings coming before the turn of the last decade.
Score – 30/40
The Verdict – Anyone but Hamilton (all other drivers) @ 4/5