Formula 1 test update

Formula 1 testing comes to a close and our resident F1 expert gives you some betting tips

The winter Grand Prix season is over, the final official test session is complete, so all that’s left for us to do is try to make a few predictions on what might happen in Bahrain, thirteen days from now. The first thing we can predict is it’s going to be close, on the final day all the top teams ran qualifying simulations and were separated by little more than the width of a wasp’s wing. 2008 champ, Hamilton ultimately took the bragging rights, but his 1:20.472 was just 0.024 seconds ahead of Mark Webber in the Red Bull and 0.067 seconds ahead of Massa’s Ferrari. The red cars are most people’s favourite and he may not have fully wrung out - Alonso has described his new steed as the best car he has ever driven, and right now I reckon he’s got a big chance to take his third title this season. If you back him at the bookies, you won’t make a fortune, the Spaniard’s their favourite too – William Hill has him at 11/4. Button’s odds look more tempting at 10/1 because they don’t believe he’ll beat his new team mate. Hamilton’s second favourite at 7/2. If you fancy a mischievous punt take a ‘Michael Schumacher crash to determine outcome of World Championship’ at 40/1 Speaking of the seven-time world champion, he ended up sixth just three tenths behind Hamilton, with the impressive Sutil in fourth and Vettel fifth. Lotus are the fastest of the new boys and even though they didn’t run in qualifying trim they were almost five seconds behind. So will all this be replicated in Bahrain? Of course not, Barcelona is a unique place that all the teams know well and the desert is dusty and has less grip. Having said that, I’ll be very surprised if there weren’t two Italian cars at the head of the pack when they get down to it on March 14th. Can’t wait! Pos  Driver             Team                          Time      1.  Hamilton          McLaren-Mercedes       1:20.472   2.  Webber             Red Bull-Renault         1:20.496    3.  Massa               Ferrari                       1:20.539   4.  Sutil                 Force India-Mercedes  1:20.611    5.  Vettel               Red Bull-Renault         1:20.667    6.  M.Schumacher  Mercedes GP               1:20.745   7.  Barrichello   Williams-Cosworth            1:20.870    8.  Kobayashi     BMW-Sauber                  1:20.911    9.  Buemi         Toro Rosso-Ferrari            1:22.135   10.  Kubica        Renault                           1:23.175  11.  Kovalainen    Lotus-Cosworth             1:25.251   12.  di Grassi     Virgin-Cosworth               1:26.160  

Click here for a gallery of some F1's 2010 star cars

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