Lewis Hamilton has dominated the Formula One scene in recent years. Crowned as world champion in three of the last four years, the Mercedes star deserves his spot at the top of the Motorsport universe.
He is now the all-time record holder for most pole positions, ranks as the most successful British driver in Formula One history and has a handful of Michael Schumacher’s biggest records in sight. But will he continue to dominate the sport in 2018? With so many rivals gunning for his title next year, we could be set for a new dawn…
Firstly, we have Valtteri Bottas. The Mercedes star spent most of 2017 in his teammate’s shadow but he could be set for a big year. Bottas isn’t without talent but his often-cautious style can let him down from time-to-time. If he is to win the world title, he needs to be ruthless and he cannot be in awe of Hamilton.
As we saw at Ferrari during the Schumacher years, playing second fiddle for a major team isn’t nice and Bottas is too good to settle for a role as Hamilton’s pacemaker. He could challenge for the title if Hamilton’s engine struggles return in 2018.
— Valtteri Bottas (@ValtteriBottas) October 30, 2017
From the restrained to the reckless, Max Verstappen has been criticised for his over-zealous style in years gone by. Arguably the most talented driver in the business bar Hamilton, he almost looks destined to win the world title at some point in his career.
He has already achieved so much during his short career but fans must remember that Verstappen is still just 20 years old. Should Red Bull Racing make the necessary improvements during the offseason, he may make the jump up and challenge for the championship next year. You wouldn’t bet against him – he has the talent to win the crown…
Hamilton’s closest rival for most of the 2017 season, Sebastian Vettel is a four-time world champion himself. As of November 9th, he is a 10/3 shot to win the crown in 2018 but it will take a dramatic turnaround on Ferrari’s part for the German to move one step closer to compatriot Schumacher’s record of seven world titles.
Plenty of punters will fancy Ferrari to get it right next year after a difficult era but it is hard to back Vettel on current form. With that in mind, it may be worth looking at bookmakers offers such as the Bet £10, Get £30 promotion with Betfair. That way, you can bet on Vettel but use the additional funds for a safer option if required.
You could even argue that Daniel Ricciardo, Verstappen’s teammate at Red Bull, deserves a mention. He is one of the most consistent drivers in the industry and should Verstappen fail in his pursuit, Ricciardo may be the one to lay down the gauntlet.
But, for now, this is Lewis Hamilton’s world and it truly is his world title to lose. Should Mercedes get everything right, it will be a major shock if Hamilton falls short in pursuit of a fifth championship.