Red Bull will be looking to win its fifth consecutive race of the season at this weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix.
Max Verstappen has won the last two races, including a dominant victory at last weekend’s Styrian Grand Prix at the same race tract as this weekend’s race- the Red Bull Ring.
Verstappen is the -163 betting favorite to win the Styrian Grand Prix at online sportsbook Bet365.
No team since McLaren in 2005 has won five straight races and not win the constructors title. With Red Bull winning the previous four races of the current season, Red Bull Boss Christian Horner wants his team to “keep turning the screw” on rivals Mercedes.
“We’ve just got to take things one step at a time,” said Horner after Verstappen’s Styrian Grand Prix win – which witnessed the first back-to-back poles and back-to-back victories of the Dutch driver’s career. “The team’s performing incredibly well. Max is, I think, driving with great maturity and consistency and we’ve just got to keep turning the screw and just keep our heads down, keep doing what we’re doing and just keep doing the basics well.
“[The Styrian Grand Prix] was our strongest and most complete performance so far this year. That’s the most dominant win that we’ve had so far this year against Mercedes, so that’s very encouraging… Our first pole here and the win, it’s been a great… two weekends so far.”
A series of car upgrades has changed the narrative of the 2021 F1 season.
This was supposed to be the year when Lewis Hamilton separates himself from Michael Schumacher with an 8th world title. Instead, it has looked like the coming out party for Max Verstappen, and Red Bull who seem to have Mercedes’ number this year.
The Story of 2021 So Far
2021 car development 🚀⏱
👀 The story so far… #StyrianGP 🇦🇹 #F1 pic.twitter.com/Oydf8sVU5Y
— Formula 1 (@F1) June 25, 2021
Much of the talk before and at the start of the season was about how this year’s drivers championship could go down the wire between seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton and his heir apparent Max Verstappen. But that has not been the story of 2021 so far.
Mercedes has been the dominant team since the start of the V6 turbo era and after the first four races of the season, it appeared that it would stay that way in 2021. But Red Bull has won the last four Grand Prix races with Verstappen taking three of them, including the last two. Suddenly, the Silver Arrows have seemingly lost their edge and have stumbled a bit.
After Verstappen’s dominant win at last weekend’s Styrian Grand Prix, Mercedes principal Toto Wolff admitted that it was the first race in the last eight years where he felt that his team lacked the pace. Hamilton spoke about the need for upgrades and more speed, but the question is how Mercedes will respond to the challenge.
Verstappen Leads Hamilton 4-3 in Wins This Season
Max Verstappen has won the past two races and leads Lewis Hamilton 4-3 for wins this season heading into Sunday’s Austrian Grand Prix. #F1 #AustrianGPhttps://t.co/obRJ3w5XP6
— Firstpost Sports (@FirstpostSports) July 1, 2021
Following his win last weekend, Verstappen now has won four races this season, one more than Hamilton. He is currently 18 points ahead of Hamilton in the drivers standings and if he can repeat last weeks dominant drive, he could start separating himself from Hamilton and the rest of the field.
Online sportsbook Bet365 currently lists Verstappen as the -163 betting favorite to win his third consecutive race of the season. Hamilton is in second place at +200 while their teammates Sergio Perez and Valterri Bottas, respectively, are pegged at +1100 with the remaining drivers as longshots to win this weekend’s race.
Verstappen has also surged to a -225 betting favorite to win this year’s F1 world championship while Hamilton is reeling at +150 in what oddsmakers are picturing to be a two-man contest. Red Bull is also 40 points up on Mercedes and threatening the Silver Arrows’ dominance in the constructors championship.