Formula One Betting: Why Hamilton's Falling Odds Mean Nothing In Championship Race

After the double disappointment of Malaysia and Japan, where an engine failure and a poor start wounded Lewis Hamilton's championship chances, the Mercedes driver has struck back in the best way possible.

Hamilton was pretty much flawless in the USA and Mexico. A pair of wins trimmed Nico Rosberg's championship to lead to 19 points.

Over the course of those two races Hamilton's championship odds fell from 4.50 to 3.65. But this makes his situation look rather better than it is.

For Rosberg to take the crown he only needs to finish in second place behind Hamilton in the remaining two races. The last two grand prix have proven he can: Rosberg took second in both. He may have lost the last two battles but he's on course to win the war.

Hamilton has, therefore, gone from being 33 points down with 100 available to 19 points down with 50 available in two races. As there are just more two races left he clearly isn't making up ground quickly enough.

The worry for Hamilton this weekend is Rosberg has tended to be quicker than him at Interlagos, the home of the Brazilian Grand Prix. Three times they have gone there as team mates at Mercedes and three times Rosberg has qualified and finished ahead of his team mate.

Rosberg won the last two races in Brazil. If he makes it three in a row on Sunday, he will clinch the world championship.

This isn't the only way in which past form points to Rosberg wrapping up the championship sooner rather than later. Out of the 19 races so far this year 10 have produced results which, if they were repeated this weekend, would seal the title for him.

The realistic best-case scenario for Hamilton is that this weekend's race produces a result which puts his championship destiny back in his hands. In other words, by Sunday evening he is close enough to Rosberg in the points that a win in Abu Dhabi will guarantee him the title.

To do that, Hamilton would have to win in Brazil with Rosberg no higher than fourth. This has happened four times this year: In Germany (where Rosberg started poorly and dropped to fourth behind the Red Bulls), Austria (where the two Mercedes clashed on the final lap and Rosberg fell to fourth), Canada (where Rosberg made another poor start and came fifth) and Monaco (where Rosberg floundered to seventh in the rain).

Hamilton's hopes therefore hang on four factors. These include the possibility of rain, which is always a threat in Sao Paulo; the performance of the Red Bulls, who've been close to Mercedes recently; and the chance Rosberg may make a poor start, something Hamilton has arguably been more susceptible to.

And critically, Hamilton's title chances rest on him delivering a champion's drive on a track where he has never previously won.


Keith Collantine is the editor of Formula One blog F1 Fanatic