Max Verstappen shows plus odds at PointsBet Sportsbook for the Abu Dhabi GP

PointsBet Abu Dhabi odds
Jakub Porzycki / Getty Images

Max Verstappen won the last two Abu Dhabi GPs, but a sixth-place finish last week in Brazil has him posted with plus odds for the first time in several weeks at PointsBet Sportsbook. Last week, he was listed with odds of -195 ahead of qualification; this week, he is +115, more than 300 points higher.

Verstappen has eight wins in the last 10 races this season but finished outside the top five in the other two. Abu Dhabi has been kind to the 2022 champion, however, with five of his six starts there landing in the top five. Verstappen is also favored to win the pole on Saturday with a line of -106.

An easy way to determine the payout is to move the decimal point two positions to the left, so a line of +115 means a bettor will make $1.15 on each dollar wagered.

For bettors more comfortable with fractional odds, a bet of +200 is the same as 2/1.

Lewis Hamilton (+270) has been shut out of Victory Lane this year. If he fails to win in Abu Dhabi, it will be the first time that has happened in his 16-year career. Hamilton won back-to-back on this track in 2018 and 2019, which are part of an eight-race streak of podium finishes there. Hamilton is posted at -225 to finish third or better.

Last week Hamilton’s teammate George Russell cashed in on 13/1 odds with his first Formula One win. The sportsbook traders will not be caught flatfooted again and his line plummeted to +400 for the Abu Dhabi GP. In three starts in this race, Russell has a best result of 15th in 2020 in a Williams Racing entry.

Sergio Perez and Charles Leclerc round out the top five with lines of +850. These two drivers are locked in a tight battle for second in the points and enter the weekend tied. In the last 12 races, both Perez and Leclerc have almost identical records with two results outside the top five each. In terms of average finishes, Leclerc holds a slight advantage of 4.9 to Perez’s 5.1. Neither performed particularly well last year with Leclerc landing 10th and Perez 15th.

No other driver is listed below 25/1. Carlos Sainz is listed at +2500 for the outright win and +260 to stand on the podium. He finished third in the 2021 Abu Dhabi GP.

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SuperMotocross set to introduce Leader Lights beginning with the World Championship finals


In a continuing effort to help fans keep track of the on track action, SuperMotocross is in the process of developing and implementing leader lights for the unified series.

Currently Supercross (SMX) utilizes stanchions in the infield that are triggered manually by a race official. At least two stanchions are used in each race as a way to draw the eye to the leader, which is especially useful in the tight confines of the stadium series when lapping often begins before the halfway mark in the 22-bike field. This system has been in place for the past two decades.

Later this year, a fully automated system will move to the bike itself to replace the old system. At that point, fans will be able to identify the leader regardless of where he is on track.

The leader lights were tested in the second Anaheim round this year. An example can be seen at the 1:45 mark in the video above on the No. 69 bike.

“What we don’t want to do is move too fast, where it’s confusing to people,” said Mike Muye, senior director of operations for Supercross and SMX in a press release. “We’ve really just focused on the leader at this point with the thought that maybe down the road we’ll introduce others.”

Scheduled to debut with the first SuperMotocross World Championship race at zMax Dragway, located just outside the Charlotte Motor Speedway, a 3D carbon fiber-printed LED light will be affixed to each motorcycle. Ten timing loops positioned around the track will trigger the lights of the leader, which will turn green.

SMX’s partner LiveTime Scoring helped develop and implement the system that has been tested in some form or fashion since 2019.

When the leader lights are successfully deployed, SuperMotocross will explore expanding the system to identify the second- and third-place riders. Depending on need and fan acceptance, more positions could be added.

SuperMotocross is exploring future enhancements, including allowing for live fan interaction with the lights and ways to use the lighting system during the race’s opening ceremony.