Venue: Sochi Autodrom
Lewis Hamilton has gone three races without a win but remains the favourite in the Russian Grand Prix betting.
The world champion is still on course to defend his title but had a disappointing race in Singapore last week where he only finished fourth.
That marked only the second time since the end of the 2013 season that Mercedes have gone three races without a victory – the first three rounds of 2018 being the other occasion.
Ferrari have been the team to beat since the summer break, but the Sochi Autodrom is a venue which has favoured Mercedes.
Since Bernie Ecclestone struck a deal with Russian president Vladimir Putin to stage a grand prix here, the Silver Arrows have won all five races, with Hamilton triumphing on three occasions.
Barring a complete disaster, Hamilton – 96 points clear of both Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen and 102 ahead of Sebastian Vettel – will win his sixth world title this year, but the Briton will want to do it in style by returning to the winners’ circle.
Sochi provides him with the ideal opportunity to do just that and Hamilton is fancied to return to the top of the podium at 8/5 in our Russian Grand Prix predictions.
How the Singapore Grand Prix finished
1 Vettel (Ferrari), 2 Leclerc (Ferrari), 3 Verstappen (Red Bull), 4 Hamilton (Mercedes), 5 Bottas (Mercedes), 6 Albon (Red Bull), 7 Norris (McLaren), 8 Gasly (Toro Rosso), 9 Hulkenberg (Renault), 10 Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo), 11 Grosjean (Haas), 12 Sainz (McLaren), 13 Stroll (Racing Point), 14 Ricciardo (Renault), 15 Kvyat (Toro Rosso), 16 Kubica (Williams), 17 Magnussen (Haas), DNF Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo), Perez (Racing Point), Russell (Williams)
The turnaround at Ferrari has been hugely impressive and Leclerc is the second favourite at 37/20 in the Russian Grand Prix odds, with team-mate Sebastian Vettel 11/4 for back-to-back wins following his success in Singapore.
The Scuderia headed into the summer break following a largely underwhelming opening half to the campaign, having failed to register a single win.
Yet they arrive in Sochi with three triumphs on the bounce, the first time they have managed to achieve such a feat in 11 years.
Vettel is likely to be boosted by his first win in 13 months, while Leclerc, who lost out through strategy last Sunday, will be keen to make up for failing to convert his pole into another victory.
Valtteri Bottas obeyed team orders to prevent Hamilton dropping down to a probable sixth last week and is unlikely to attract much support at 6/1, even though he is second in the standings and won here two years ago.
Past Russian Grand Prix winners:
2018 Hamilton (Mercedes), Bottas (Mercedes), Vettel (Ferrari)
2017 Bottas (Mercedes), Vettel (Ferrari), Raikkonen (Ferrari)
2016 Rosberg (Mercedes), Hamilton (Mercedes), Raikkonen (Ferrari)
2015 Hamilton (Mercedes), Vettel (Ferrari), Perez (Force India)
2014 Hamilton (Mercedes), Rosberg (Mercedes), Bottas (Williams)
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