Eifel Grand Prix 2020
Formula 1 is finally returning to Nurburgring for the first time since 2013 as it plays host to the Eifel Grand Prix.
After two penalties ruined his race in the Russian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton will get his next opportunity to tie Michael Schumacher’s all-time Grand Prix wins record in Germany.
Mercedes team-mate Valterri Bottas — who benefited from Hamilton’s penalty to win in Sochi — and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen once again figure to be his biggest challengers. Meanwhile, Ferrari will be back with further upgrades as they look to continue their improving form.
Hamilton’s quest for history
Hamilton’s chances of winning the Russian Grand Prix were looking good after he once again claimed pole. It was his eighth pole in 10 races so far this season; team-mate Bottas has claimed the other two.
However, Hamilton’s race all fell apart before it even began after he was penalised for breaking practice-start rules. Although Mercedes were deemed at fault for the infraction, Hamilton still had to serve out a 10-second time penalty, which effectively ended his chances of victory.
Hamilton hardly needs more motivation to do well in Germany, but he will surely be champing at the bit to bounce back.
Moreover, Hamilton will also be egged on by the potential to make more history as he remains just one win shy of tying Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 Grand Prix wins.
Hamilton doesn’t have an overwhelming history of success at Nurburgring, although he still has more experience at the track than most despite the fact that it hasn’t hosted an F1 race in seven years.
In fact, Hamilton claimed pole in the last race at Nurburgring in 2013, although Sebastian Vettel ended up winning the race.
Hamilton does have one win in three F1 starts at Nurburgring, which came in 2011 when he was still with McLaren.
The Eifel Grand Prix 2020 betting odds have Hamilton as a massive favourite to win Mercedes’ home Grand Prix, not only because the Silver Arrows have won eight out of the 10 races thus far, but because Nurburgring seems to suit Mercedes’ big strength on the corners quite well.
However, there could still be some hope for other teams — particularly Mercedes’ top challengers, Red Bull — if the conditions decide to play a big part in the race. The temperature is expected to be cold while rain is possible for the entire weekend, so there is a chance for a more unpredictable and potentially competitive race.
Ferrari planning upgrades
Speaking of competitive, Ferrari have been looking better over the last two races. Charles Leclerc has had back-to-back top-10 finishes and went sixth in Sochi, his best result since coming in fourth in the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix back in August.
Meanwhile, Sebastian Vettel finished in 13th after he suffered a crash during qualifying that saw him start in 14th.
Ferrari brought an upgrade package to Sochi — which included a revised rear-wing endplate and changes to the under-nose cape and bargeboards — and they plan to bring out more upgrades to their car for Nurburgring.
Team principle Mattia Binotto played down the effects of those upgrades, claiming the track characteristics had a bigger effect on the result in Russia.
Regardless, Ferrari are on an upward trend at the moment and will be eager to produce some positive Eifel Grand Prix 2020 highlights at Nurburgring.
There’s not much to go by in terms of historical trends for the Eifel Grand Prix since Nurburgring hasn’t hosted a Formula 1 race in seven years. Max Verstappen won last year’s dramatic German Grand Prix, but that race was held in Hockenheim.
With the German Grand Prix moving primarily to Hockenheim, Nurburgring has held just three F1 races this century: in 2009, 2011, and 2013.
Hamilton has four career wins in Germany, but only one of them was in Nurburgring. Sebastian Vettel is the only other active driver who owns a victory at the track.
Bottas, Kimi Raikkonen, Daniel Ricciardo, and Sergio Perez were also active the last time F1 returned to Nurburgring in 2013.
Aside from Hamilton, Raikkonen is also ready to make history at Nurburgring. He’s set to make his 323rd Grand Prix start, moving him ahead of Rubens Barrichello.
What are the odds?
SBOTOP odds for the Eifel Grand Prix have Hamilton as the 1.55 favourite to finish ahead of any other driver on the grid. The field is priced at 2.47, which could be an interesting bet, especially with the weather conditions in Germany possibly playing a huge factor and could cause some uncertainty.
Meanwhile, Hamilton is a heavier favourite at 1.35 to outperform team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who is priced at 2.88 to finish higher than the reigning world champion.
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.
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