The summer break is over and we head to one of the most iconic circuits on the calendar, Spa-Francorchamps. Sebastian Vettel currently leads the Driver Standings on 202 points, 14 ahead of his closest rival Lewis Hamilton. Valtteri Bottas is just a further 19 points back and so cannot be counted out of the title race just yet.

One of the biggest talking points this weekend will be tyres and whether they will blister or can they be kept alive long enough to provide an edge. Notably Williams and Red Bull have been very aggressive on their tyre choices for this weekend having only one set of the soft tyres for each of their drivers.

Danny Ric is the master of extending a stint

Daniel Ricciardo is a master at keeping his tyres within the optimal working range. He got a podium at Silverstone, a track with similar characteristics to Spa, by doing a marathon opening stint on the supersofts; a feat that he may well have to emulate if he’s to have a good result this weekend. He did manage to finish on the 2nd step of the podium last year, despite only qualifying in 5th, and so we wouldn’t be surprised if Ricciardo made the podium once again.

Mercedes to dominate?

Conversely, the Mercedes duo have been more conservative on the tyre choices, a decision that is likely to pay dividends this weekend. As we previously noted, Spa is very similar to Silverstone in terms of track characteristics with an abundance of long fast and medium speed corners. Silverstone suited the Mercedes’ chassis and we expect the Silver Arrows to be the car to beat in Belgium. In last season’s race at Spa Lewis Hamilton amazingly raced from the back row of the grid to finish on the bottom step of the podium finishing 32.5 seconds ahead of his now teammate Valtteri Bottas, and so we expect Lewis to be the better of the pairing, however Bottas may not be too far behind.

Best Bets:

Daniel Ricciardo Podium Finish @ 11/4

Lewis Hamilton Race Win @ 8/11

Mercedes Dual Forecast @ 5/2

Odds are correct at the time of posting

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