On the heels of his win in the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix win, Charles Leclerc is this week’s odds favorite at PointsBet Sportsbook to take the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, which is the second running of this race.
On Thursday, Leclerc showed odds of +140 for the Grand Prix and had a line of +130 to win Saturday’s pole. Leclerc won both the pole and race in Bahrain as Ferrari surged to a 1-2 finish. Leclerc was listed at +260 for that race.
One way to view American Odds is to move the decimal point two positions to the left. That will let a bettor know what they will make on a $1 bet, so the return on investment this week for Leclerc is $1.40 for the race and $1.30 if he wins the pole. For bettors more comfortable with fractional odds, a bet of +300 is the same as 3/1.
Leclerc’s race line is only marginally better than the 2021 Formula 1 champion Max Verstappen, who was posted Thursday at +150. Fuel pump issues for both Red Bull Racing cars forced their retirement in the closing laps in Bahrain, but Verstappen was second in last year’s edition of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix after leading the most laps of 31.
Leclerc’s Ferrari teammate, Carlos Sainz, Jr. is the third ranked driver this week with a line of +450. No one else is under 10/1. Sainz finished second last week and had four podiums in 2021, but he is still seeking his first career F1 win.
Last year, Lewis Hamilton was heavily favored to win the inaugural race on the Jeddah Circuit with a line of -200, which meant the only way to make a successful bet was to find someone willing to take the opposite side. The traders were proved correct as Hamilton earned the victory over Verstappen. Hamilton finished third last week in Bahrain, but he has complained this season that the Mercedes lacks pace. The sportsbook traders seem to be listening.
Rounding out the top five at PointsBet for the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix is Verstappen’s teammate Sergio Perez with a line of +1800. Perez retired early from last year’s edition of this race when he was involved in a Lap 14 accident with George Russell and Nikita Mazepin.
One of the more interesting dark horses this week is Kevin Magnussen, who earned the first top-five for Haas F1 since he gave them two such finishes in 2016. Last year, the best finish for this car was 14th in the Grand Prix of Monaco with Mazepin behind the wheel and it is taking a while for the traders to catch up to his potential. Magnussen was posted at +10000 (100/1) on Thursday.
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