Azerbaijan Grand Prix betting tips: Verstappen out to keep lead
Preview and odds for Sunday’s race
Max Verstappen moved into the lead of the Formula One World Championship for the first time after a dominant race win in Monaco.
The Red Bull driver made the most of pole-sitter Charles Leclerc’s unfortunate withdrawal to lead throughout the race and cash in on a poor weekend for seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton to open up a four-point lead in the standings.
Verstappen is expected to be very strong again at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, a circuit which has similar characteristics to Monaco in the middle sector but also boasts one of the fastest straights in F1. Red Bull’s controversial flexible rear wing may also play into their favour this weekend.
Can Ferrari back up Monaco promise?
The Scuderia excited their fans by showing serious pace all weekend in Monaco, topping the timesheets in practice and then Monegasque Leclerc landing pole position.
But the 23-year-old failed to make it to the grid following a qualifying crash, leaving his team-mate Carlos Sainz to fly the flag – and he secured the team a first podium of the season with a second-placed finish.
Ferrari excelled in the slow corners of Monaco, where overtaking is almost impossible, but they have struggled for straight-line speed. Sainz’s 50/1 price for a win on the streets of Baku suggests they are up against it to repeat their form this weekend.
Other podium contenders include McLaren’s Lando Norris, who has shone this season with two top-three finishes and is 5/2 to seal a third. Perez is yet to make the top three since his move to Red Bull but is 7/5 to break his duck.
Ricciardo yet to show potential at McLaren
Australian Daniel Ricciardo had a miserable time in Monaco, qualifying 12th and finishing the race in the same position while team-mate Norris sprayed champagne on the podium.
Ricciardo has struggled to get to grips with his new car since moving from Renault and trails Norris 4-1 in their head-to-head battle.
Life is rarely dull for Ricciardo in Baku. He won the maiden race there in 2017 for Red Bull but has failed to finish the race since – including a high-profile crash into team-mate Verstappen in 2018.
Stroll has good memories of Baku
Lance Stroll secured a stunning third position at the inaugural Azerbaijan Grand Prix in 2017 to become F1’s second youngest podium finisher in his days at Williams.
He has finished eighth and ninth in the next two editions of the race in struggling cars. Now with Aston Martin, Stroll is 8/1 for a first top-six finish of the season.
The team showed progression in Monaco, with Sebastian Vettel finishing fifth and Stroll eighth. Stroll is 7/5 to finish higher than team-mate Vettel and extend his lead this season to 4-2.
All odds and markets correct as of date of publication