Recently we had a very lively discussion in the Motor Sports forum here at OLBG about the current developments in the Formula 1 and the availability of ‘value' in the Mercedes-dominated season, which gradually turns into a dream come true for the bookies. With Hamilton and Rosberg having incredible cars at their disposal and looking solid as rock, finding any sort of value selections is left mostly to the chance of having some of the smaller teams make it to the one remaining spot at the podium in the Podium finish market or hope that one of the complete outsiders somehow manage a point for us to enjoy a 4/1 winner there. While we were discussion, which is why I strongly recommend you check the individual race threads in the forum (Formula 1 Betting Forum), I came to realize that we can get creative enough and at least try to make some cash out of this one-sided season. Here is a review of my observations and strategies, which I am putting in practice immediately.
THE DUAL FORECAST MARKET
I must confess I rarely looked at this market before this season as in a more balanced Formula 1 year it is never that useful because you have to select not one, but two “winners” (top 2), which makes it that bit more difficult as even the best pilots could have an off day no matter how good their cars are or how talented they are. While last year it was narrowed down to finding a suitable partner for Vettel who made the top 2 in 14 out of 19 races, hence making the market easier to navigate, this season in order for us to find any sort of value there, we must rely on what was a black hole before, namely one of the favorites not making it. Hamilton and Rosberg have dominated the three races so far, getting first and second in two of them to limit any possible value to as low as 1.50 on dual forecast, but if we look at the opening race, which Rosberg won, we could immediately see the potential there is for profit if one of the two superior cars fail for one reason or another. In Australia Rosberg won with Magnussen second, which offered a whopping 100/1 on the dual forecast for those who saw Magnussen capable of getting a top 2 place. Of course it is not realistic to expect that kind of developments every single race, but it is a good starting point for careful deliberation on the aforementioned potential of the market.
If we are to assume that over the course of 19 races, the two dominant Mercedes cars would eventually have slip ups, the more - the better, we are getting a window of opportunity for finding a suitable partner for either Hamilton or Rosberg and securing odds in the region of 25/1 at the very least on that dual forecast market. Of course, in order for this to work, we must carefully consider the specifics of each track as my good friend DanBradley (Check his bloghere) shrewdly observed numerous times on the forum. We must also do our homework on the chances of the different other teams to challenge and attach that to the individual races as some cars are normally better suited than others for one track than another. Lastly we must keep an eye for the ability of every driver outside Hamilton and Rosberg on those specific tracks by carefully analyzing their previous performances, no matter what team they were on.
THE IDEA IN SHORT
Just to put the previous information into numbers I will take the upcoming China Grand Prix as an example, where any dual forecast outside of Hamilton/Rosberg is worth taking, not to say that all are worth taking together and profit is certain provided one of them favorites does not finish or end up outside the top 2. Here are the opening odds for the different duals available 4 days prior to the race:
The three other drivers getting attention here are Vettel, Raikkonen and Massa and combining any of them with any of the two favorites offers 10 times more value than simply relying on Hamilton and Rosberg making it three in a row double Mercedes victories. The idea behind this is that bookies will be dead certain Mercedes will dominate the season from start to finish, but even in his most dominant moments from the last few years, Vettel for example had those slip ups, which combined with the presumably more difficult tracks makes it exceptionally appealing to lay those Mercedes duals. If we select the three most likely drivers to challenge Hamilton and Rosberg (the example offers Vettel, Raikkonen and Massa, but there are several others who are worth looking at and will become available after practices and qualifiers) and combine them with any of the two favorites, placing 10 pounds on the dual forecast for these six pairs, we are still getting that potential to double the investment at the very least, again PROVIDED Hamilton or Rosberg do not make it. The only challenges remain to figure the best possible moment (race) for that, the best possible combination (if we are not to risk on that many pairs) and just pull the trigger. Here is the example:
10 Pounds on Hamilton/Vettel @ 13.00 = 130 Pounds
10 Pounds on Rosberg/Vettel @ 23.00 = 230 Pounds
10 Pounds on Hamilton/Raikkonen @ 29.00 = 290 Pounds
10 Pounds on Hamilton/Massa @ 29.00 = 290 Pounds
10 Pounds on Rosberg/Massa @ 67.00 = 670 Pounds
10 Pounds on Rosberg/Raikkonen @ 67.00 = 670 Pounds
Total stake: 60 Pounds / Minimal profit (on condition): 60 Pounds
THE RIGHT MOMENT
In order to limit the potential for just blindly throwing money in the garbage trying to find some value, we must make sure this is implemented at the right moment, or the moment when either Hamilton or Rosberg are most likely to have a bad day. Of course there is potential both will have a bad day at the same time, but let's not get that deep as those two are obviously classes above everyone else in terms of car capabilities and that is just way too unlikely. One of the conditions is to find the most demanding tracks (Thank you, DanBradley) and look closely at previous records. One such race, for example, is Monaco. The track there is considered one of if not the most difficult for drivers and looks the perfect opportunity to lay a favorite in some way due to the likelihood for incidents and additional pressure on the cars.
Our research could start from singling out the track, in our case Monaco, and then trying to figure which of the two favorites is more likely to face problems. Looking at the past two seasons, Nico Rosberg finished in the top 2 on both occasions while Hamilton, despite being in good enough position on the grid, for some reason could not build a good enough race. This observation immediately catches a persons' attention and allows that thought of actually laying the bigger of the favorites on a track which is not one of his favorites. At the same time, again from historical perspective, Vettel seems to handle the track reasonably well in terms of limiting mistakes and his record is top 2 on three of the last four occasions there. There comes our somewhat rounded strategy.
Finding the track -> Singling out the more likely favorite to struggle -> -> Singling out the most likely outsider to deliver -> Getting the decent dual forecast odds ---------------------------------------------------------
If we are to expect that bookies will stick to their guns (why wouldn't they) and offer something in the region of 13.00 for any dual outside the favorites, we could then either put all our eggs in one basket by relying that the research and logic would deliver on the occasion or just do the spread I looked at earlier or maybe cut it in half with the favorite we consider more likely to be in the top two. In the example with Monaco that being Rosberg we can spread 30 pounds on him paired with Vettel and the two other most likely outsiders. In both cases the value is there and while the risk of course is not that small, it is much more worth-taking than going for the 1.50 on Hamilton/Rosberg week after week staking big and get burnt big when one of them fails like Hamilton did in the first race.
My view is that there are around 4 or 5 tracks which are difficult enough and on which Hamilton and Rosberg do not hold any historical arguments and if we try and implement this on let's say five occasions, risking the maximum suggested 60 pounds a race, we could hypothetically cover pretty easily by one 67.00 option Rosberg/Raikkonen from the China example. Of course researching each individual race is totally up to you and I am sure some people have better observations on car requirements for the individual tracks and know better what Rosberg and Hamilton find a more daunting task, so the entire concept is just a suggestion thrown out there for you to consider if you feel you have the in-depth knowledge on Formula 1 but are not entire sure how to use it wisely from a betting perspective. After all, thanks to OLBG I have grown ever more analytical and excited by the quest for finding better value than just taking the 1.50 and when the mind starts ticking, we can all come up with an experiment like this one.
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