Formula 1 heads to Italy this weekend for just the third running of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari. The event is often referred to as “Imola” after the town in which the race track is located.
Will Hamilton Regain Form?
Since joining the circuit, Lewis Hamilton has been considered the elite of Formula 1. Winning his first title back in 2008, Hamilton has taken the championship six other times since, including an impressive stretch where he won four years in a row and six out of seven years. His last championship came in 2020 before falling to Max Verstappen last year in what might have been one of the most dramatic seasons in the history of F1.
However, Hamilton hasn’t won a race since the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in 2021, but this could be the weekend he gets back on track. Hamilton owns the best lap record during a race from his win back in 2020, completing the 19-turn circuit in 1:15.484. His F1 betting odds aren’t too shabby, either, but more on that later.
- Date: Sunday, 9:05 a.m. ET
- Television: ESPN
- Location: Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Imola, Italy
Will it Stick?
One of the big questions will be whether or not this race sticks around. It was added to the schedule in 2020 only because the Chinese Grand Prix canceled its event due to the pandemic. When China was forced to cancel again in 2021, the race put back on the schedule. Imola will host at least one F1 Grand Prix through 2025.
F1 is also in the second year of the Sprint format and this event is one of three using said format. The Sprint will be a 100-kilometer dash with no pit stops unless needed. A race to the finish. Unlike last year, however, points will be given to the top eight finishers. The driver who wins receives eight points, compared to the three from last season’s setup. Points apply to both driver standings and manufacturer standings.
In last year’s race, the winning driver of the Sprint was given the pole position for Sunday’s race. For this year, the fastest qualifying time earns the pole position for the Sprint race. The winner of the Sprint race will start P1 in the traditional Grand Prix. It remains to be seen whether Sprint races will continue after this season.
What Happened Last Time?
In last year’s running, Verstappen was the winner despite Hamilton starting on the pole. Hamilton went on to finish second.
Arguably the best rivalry in Formula One should continue on Sunday as a win for either driver would make it two wins in three races in the F1 Imola Grand Prix.
Where’s the Value?
Charles Leclerc and Ferrari enter as having the best odds to win the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at +110 odds. However, it was reported yesterday that Leclerc was robbed of a Richard Mille watch that is valued at $320,000 dollars. Will that play a role in his headspace?
Verstappen is right there with Leclerc in terms of the odds at just +175. Carlos Sainz is +650, Hamilton is +1200 and Sergio Perez rounds out the top five at +1400.
If you’re looking for value, Hamilton might be a good play. Considering he’s one of the two guys who has won this race and you’re getting over 10-1 odds on that driver, that’s the best value on the board.