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Australian Grand Prix predictions, betting tips & odds: Betting odds & tips you need for the 2018 F1 season opener

Leigh Copson 20 Mar 2018
  • 2018 Formula 1 season gets underway in Melbourne
  • Former world champion Lewis Hamilton favourite for Australian Grand Prix
  • Ferrari & Red Bull looking to end Mercedes' dominance this season
Daniel Ricciardo (credit: Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

The 2018 Formula 1 season gets underway with the Australian Grand Prix on March 25 and this is’s complete guide to the race in Melbourne. Read on for our all of our free predictions and betting tips.

Australian Grand Prix 2018 Predictions

Australian Grand Prix 2018 Betting Tips Explained

The wait is over and the 2018 Formula 1 season finally gets underway in Australia this Sunday – but who will win the annual curtain-raiser at Albert Park in Melbourne?

All eyes will be on defending champion Lewis Hamilton as he begins his quest for back-to-back Drivers’ Championships, but the British ace could face some stiff competition with team-mate Valterri Bottas, four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel and the Red Bull duo of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo all looking to deny him the crown. So the question is, who will lay down a marker for the season at Albert Park in Melbourne.

Hamilton goes into the race as the bookmakers’ favourite, but this circuit has not brought a great deal of success to the Mercedes man during his career. The 33-year-old has took the chequered flag on only two occasions – in 2008 and 2015 – and just last year he failed to convert pole position into a race win as he was beaten by world championship rival Vettel, who is a two-time winner at this track too.

So while the odds show that Hamilton is the man to beat on Sunday, history suggests the British driver will not live up to his ‘favourite’ tag Down Under. But then on the flip side, Mercedes still boast the best car in the business and despite his lack of wins Hamilton has been a consistent performer here in recent years, winning in 2015 before claiming pole position and finishing the runner-up in the race in each of the past two seasons.

It would not shock anybody to see Hamilton complete a hat-trick of Australian Grand Prix wins this Sunday, but it would not be a surprise to see somebody else standing atop the podium. Therefore I am going to avoid the Race Winner market for the season-opening race – that does not mean there is a shortage of betting markets though.

My first recommendation is to back Hamilton to claim pole position. The defending world champion has been a dominant force in qualifying in recent seasons – he has started from pole position 34 times over the past three campaigns, and if you simply look at the Australian Grand Prix the Brit has set the standard in qualifying in each of the last four seasons and in five of the last six. So how can we look past Hamilton in this market – he has become a master at qualifying and I expect to see him to be sat at the very front of the grid when Sunday’s race gets underway.

My second recommendation is backing Daniel Ricciardo for a podium finish. The Red Bull man provided us with several winning bets throughout the 2017 season and he is a man to keep an eye on this time around because Red Bull could become a major threat to Mercedes this season. Max Verstappen is the man who will get most of the attention – he is seen as the future of the sport – but Ricciardo has been a very consistent performer when his car has not let him down.

The 28-year-old Australian finished in the top six in every race he finished in 2017 and he appeared on the podium in nine of the 14 races he completed. That level of consistency cannot be ignored, and after last season’s retirement in his home Grand Prix, Ricciardo will be desperate to put on a show this time around. He has the talent and the car to do just that, so I would not be at all surprised if he is standing on the podium in Melbourne.

Australian Grand Prix 2018 Predictions

Australian Grand Prix Circuit

The Melbourne Grand Prix circuit has been hosting the Australian Grand Prix since 1996. A street circuit that surrounds Albert Park Lake, one lap is just over three miles long and it is considered one of the least-challenging circuits on the calendar due to is fast and undemanding corners. However, there are also very few straights on this track so chances to overtake are limited.

It has been a popular track for drivers from the United Kingdom and Germany since returning to the F1 schedule. A British driver has taken the chequered flag on nine occasions, with a German driver winning eight times, and the most successful driver in the circuit’s history is Michael Schumacher who has won four instalments of this famous race. In terms of active drivers, Sebastian Vettel joined Lewis Hamilton as a two-time winner of the Australian Grand Prix with his success in 2017.

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Number Of Laps: 58
Lap Length: 3.296 miles
Lap Record: Michael Schumacher, 1 minute 24.125 seconds (2004).

Australian Grand Prix Previous Winners

Sebastian Vettel celebrates his win in 2017. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Michael Schumacher celebrates after winning the 2004 Australian Grand Prix. The German is the most successful driver since F1 returned to the circuit, having won their four times. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Australian Grand Prix winners

1928Arthur WaiteAustinPhillip Island
1929Arthur TerdichBugattiPhillip Island
1930Bill ThompsonBugattiPhillip Island
1931Carl JunkerBugattiPhillip Island
1932Bill ThompsonBugattiPhillip Island
1933Bill ThompsonRileyPhillip Island
1934Bob Lea-WrightSingerPhillip Island
1935Les MurphyMGPhillip Island
1937Les MurphyMGVictor Harbor
1938Peter WhiteheadERABathurst
1939Alan TomlinsonMGLobethal
1947Bill MurrayMGBathurst
1948Frank PrattBMWPoint Cook
1949John CrouchDelahayeLeyburn
1950Doug WhitefordFordNuriootpa
1951Warwick PratleyGRS-FordNarrogin
1952Doug WhitefordTalbot-LagoBathurst
1953Doug WhitefordTalbot-LagoAlbert Park
1954Lex DavisonHWM-JaguarSouthport
1955Jack BrabhamCooper-BristolPort Wakefield
1956Stirling MossMaseratiAlbert Park
1957Lex Davison/Bill PattersonFerrariCaversham
1958Lex DavisonFerrariBathurst
1959Stan JonesMaseratiLongford
1960Alex MildrenCooper-MaseratiLowood
1961Lex DavisonCooper-ClimaxMallala
1962Bruce McLarenCooper-ClimaxCaversham
1963Jack BrabhamBrabham-ClimaxWarwick Farm
1964Jack BrabhamBrabham-ClimaxSandown
1965Bruce McLarenCooper-ClimaxLongford
1966Graham HillBRMLakeside
1967Jackie StewartBRMWarwick Farm
1968Jim ClarkLotus-CosworthSandown
1969Chris AmonFerrariLakeside
1970Frank MatichMcLaren-Repco/HoldenWarwick Farm
1971Frank MatichMatich-Repco/HoldenWarwick Farm
1972Graham McRaeLeda-ChevroletSandown
1973Graham McRaeMcRae-ChevroletSandown
1974Max StewartLola-ChevroletOran Park
1975Max StewartLola-ChevroletSurfers Paradise
1976John GossMatch-Repco/HoldenSandown
1977Warwick BrownLola-ChevroletOran Park
1978Graham McRaeMcRae-ChevroletSandown
1979Johnnie WalkerLola-ChevroletWanneroo
1980Alan JonesWilliams-CosworthCalder
1981Roberto MorenoRalt-FordCalder
1982Alain ProstRalt-FordCalder
1983Roberto MorenoRalt-FordCalder
1984Roberto MorenoRalt-FordCalder
1985Keke RosbergWilliams-HondaAdelaide
1986Alain ProstMcLaren-TAGAdelaide
1987Gerhard BergerFerrariAdelaide
1988Alain ProstMcLaren-HondaAdelaide
1989Thierry BoutsenWilliams-HondaAdelaide
1990Nelson PiquetBennetton-FordAdelaide
1991Ayrton SennaMcLaren-HondaAdelaide
1992Gerhard BergerMcLaren-HondaAdelaide
1993Ayrton SennaMcLaren-FordAdelaide
1994Nigel MansellWilliams-RenaultAdelaide
1995Damon HillWilliams-RenaultAdelaide
1996Damon HillWilliams-RenaultAdelaide
1997David CoulthardMcLaren-MercedesAlbert Park
1998Mika HakkinenMcLaren-MercedesAlbert Park
1999Eddie IrvineFerrariAlbert Park
2000Michael SchumacherFerrariAlbert Park
2001Michael SchumacherFerrariAlbert Park
2002Michael SchumacherFerrariAlbert Park
2003David CoulthardMcLaren-MercedesAlbert Park
2004Michael SchumacherFerrariAlbert Park
2005Giancarlo FisichellaRenaultAlbert Park
2006Fernando AlonsoRenaultAlbert Park
2007Kimi RaikkonenFerrariAlbert Park
2008Lewis HamiltonMcLaren-MercedesAlbert Park
2009Jenson ButtonBrawn-MercedesAlbert Park
2010Jenson ButtonMcLaren-MercedesAlbert Park
2011Sebastian VettelRed Bull-RenaultAlbert Park
2012Jenson ButtonMcLaren-MercedesAlbert Park
2013Kimi RaikkonenLotus-RenaultAlbert Park
2014Nico RosbergMercedesAlbert Park
2015Lewis HamiltonMercedesAlbert Park
2016Nico RosbergMercedesAlbert Park
2017Sebastian VettelFerrariAlbert Park
2018Sebastian VettelFerrariAlbert Park

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Australian Grand Prix predictions, betting tips & odds: Betting odds & tips you need for the 2018 F1 season opener

The 2018 Formula 1 season gets underway with the Australian Grand Prix on March 25 and this is’s complete guide to the race in Melbourne.

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