Motor Racing Betting Advice

Many events come under the umbrella of motor racing including Moto GP and Speedway but by far the most popular, both from a spectator’s point of view and a punter’s point of view is Formula 1. Some bet types and

Motor Racing Betting Advice

F1Many events come under the umbrella of motor racing including Moto GP and Speedway but by far the most popular, both from a spectator’s point of view and a punter’s point of view is Formula 1. Some bet types and names may differ slightly between the events but they are usually pretty similar.

With Sky now controlling the rights to Formula 1 the coverage has got even better and punters are very keen to bet so this is a very important lesson.

Season Long Bets

Drivers Championship

This is a bet on which driver will win the Drivers Championship. This is a very popular bet ahead of the season because the odds are normally fairly competitive and as the market remains open throughout the season there is always the opportunity to trade out of your bet at any time by laying off all or some of your liability.

Driver ability plays a large part in the outcome of this bet obviously but the ability of the cars is also a huge consideration.

Constructor's Championship

F1Not quite as popular a bet as the Drivers Championship but still a very popular betting option, this is a bet on which team win the Constructors Championship. This bet requires similar consideration as the Drivers Championship except you are effectively betting on both drivers in the same team. The results are normally similar to the Constructors Championship but if a team has one driver who performs very well and one driver who performs poorly then they are very unlikely to win the Constructors Championship. Look for teams that are expected to perform very well in the coming season with two top drivers at their disposal. This is another market that remains open throughout the season allowing trading opportunities.

Qualifying Bets

Pole Position

The whole reason for qualifying is to decide the order of the starting grid and a bet on which driver achieves pole position is a popular one. The order of the grid has a huge bearing on the finishing positions in the race but remember that the requirements for gaining pole position are quite different to those required to win a race. Gaining pole position is less about consistency over many laps and more about a driver’s and a car’s ability to produce fast, one off, lap times. It will often be the case that some cars are better during qualifying and some are better during the race itself.

Practice - Winning Driver

In each practice session you are able to bet on the winning driver. You should find the markets names Practice 1 - Winning Driver, Practice 2 - Winning Driver and so on and it offers multiple bets on the practice sessions.

Race Bets


The most popular bet on each Grand Prix is the winner of the race. It is a very self explanatory bet and the odds are likely to change after qualifying when the order of the starting grid is known with those closer to pole favoured.

Winning Car

This is a bet on the team that wins the Grand Prix. It is effectively a coupled bet on the two drivers representing a team and is a good bet when you strongly fancy a team to win a Grand Prix but can’t decide which driver. The odds take into account that you are backing two drivers though and if you have slight preference for one of the drivers you may be better off backing both drivers but having a slightly bigger bet on the driver you favour.

Podium Finish

This is effectively a ‘place only’ bet on a driver of your choice to finish in the first three. You don’t win anymore whether they finish first or third which is an important aspect of this bet and the odds are much shorter than the winner market so it’s normally best to use this market when you fancy a driver at a big price but don’t necessarily think he’ll win.

Points Finish

A similar type of bet to podium finish but this time you are betting on the driver to finish within the points allocation, which means they have to finish in the top 10. Since there are so many short priced contenders in this market it is not a market that too many bookmakers will want to price up and instead you may only find it is available on the exchanges.

Fastest Lap

Whilst not many drivers will get too excited about having the fastest lap in a Grand Prix unless it contributes to them winning the race punters might get more excited if they’ve backed a driver to have the fastest lap. Not the most common of bets, find your clues from qualifying.

Number Of Finishers

This market doesn’t require you to predict the exact number of finishers, instead the bookmakers give a number and your job is to decide whether it will be over or under that number. The odds should be even both sides of the argument as the bookmakers are effectively picking a ‘spread’ which will be the number of finishers they think are most likely. Don’t be confused by the fact that the number will be given as a half number (.5), this is merely so that all outcomes are capable of being winning outcomes.

Important Considerations

Early Season Form Can Be Unpredictable

Unless you happen to know something that most other punters don’t know it usually pays to start the season with relatively small stakes and increase those stakes as the season goes on. The early part of the season is notoriously unpredictable with many changes being made to cars and to which teams the drivers are driving for in between seasons.

As the season progresses the more resourceful teams are able to iron out any early season issues meaning the big boys tend to dominate towards the end of the season.

Back The Track

The circuit that the drivers face is the place to start when deciding your bets. The differing circuits have some very differing characteristics and as a result certain drivers and cars act better at some circuits rather than others. Pay close attention to previous history at each circuit and as well as which drivers and cars have gone well there in the past also look at how important the grid position is. Some tracks are almost impossible to overtake on and some courses it is much easier to overtake.

Look at Monaco for example, between 2004 and 2013 9 of the 10 winners of the race started in pole position. Not all of those winners were the favourites either, even after qualifying.

Check The Weather

The weather can have a huge impact on results. Some drivers and some teams are better equipped to handle wet conditions and completely different results can be seen on wet tracks than if the weather had stayed fair. Always know what the weather is likely to do before placing your bets and know which drivers and teams will be best suited to those conditions.

Beware Betting After A Break

During some of the longer breaks between races during a season it is likely that many adjustments will have been made to the cars (as many adjustments as they can make within the rules to improve performance). This means that some teams may suddenly improve and some of the teams that have been performing better might not be quite so dominant. Some clues could be gained about apparent improvements in the first qualifying session after a break.

Information Equals Profit

Motor Racing betting is all about arming yourself with as much information as possible. What teams are going well and which aren’t? Which drivers are going well and which aren’t? Who drives this track the best? How important is pole position? What is the weather likely to do? These are all questions that you should know the answer of if you are having a serious bet. If you don’t know this information for a particular race then it is probably best to avoid having a bet or lower your stakes as the punters with the most information are likely to be the ones who are collecting after a race.

Click here to find F1 discussion and tips on the OLBG Formula 1 Forum.

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