Should Mercedes Be Concerned Ahead Of Bahrain GP?

Written By Nicole Russo on March 15, 2022
bahrain gp odds

Formula 1 testing wrapped up in Bahrain this past weekend, giving drivers just one week before the first race of the season. While it is hard to make race predictions based on testing alone, the past few weeks have begun to shift F1 betting odds. Mercedes is no longer the favorite in Bahrain GP odds at most legal online sportsbooks heading into the Bahrain GP after a shaky testing session.

Bahrain GP Odds

Max Verstappen
Bet now
+175
Bet now
+220
Bet now
+200
Lewis Hamilton
Bet now
+235
Bet now
+240
Bet now
+250
Charles Leclerc
Bet now
+550
Bet now
+500
Bet now
+500
Carlos Sainz Jr.
Bet now
+800
Bet now
+850
Bet now
+700
George Russell
Bet now
+900
Bet now
+750
Bet now
+1000
Sergio Perez
Bet now
+2000
Bet now
+2200
Bet now
+1600
Lando Norris
Bet now
+2800
Bet now
+2100
Bet now
+2500
Daniel Ricciardo
Bet now
+6500
Bet now
+3200
Bet now
+5000
Pierre Gasly
Bet now
+6500
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+6600
Fernando Alonso
Bet now
+8000
Bet now
+3200
Bet now
+5000

What We Learned From The Bahrain Testing Session

The first race of the season is so difficult to handicap because F1 teams, especially the ones at the top, are known for sandbagging testing sessions in order to keep things close to the chest. It is hard to tell just how well or how poorly certain cars are performing when you’re unsure if the drivers are giving it their all.

Does Mercedes really not have a championship-winning car this year, or is Toto Wolff playing games once again? Does Haas actually have a car that won’t get lapped this season?

Red Bull

Just like in Barcelona, Red Bull started slowly in the Bahrain testing session. Most people were preparing to call it a day when Verstappen pulled off his fastest lap time with 20 minutes to go on Day 3.

Then with just eight minutes to go, he went .2 seconds faster to overtake Leclerc with a final time of 1m 31.720s. The team so far has downplayed the impressive testing results, but you can clearly see the confidence running throughout the camp.

The car’s unique upgrades, including sculpted side pods, seem to be paying off so far. Max has now eclipsed Lewis in the opening odds for the Bahrain GP, at +200 to win the race.

Mercedes

It’s the general consensus that Mercedes has been holding back so far. Although Lewis is making the rounds telling the press that the team’s current car “won’t be competing for wins”, many doubt the sincerity of those remarks.

On the flip side, other drivers that have tested behind the car agree it doesn’t look well balanced. The team completed 384 laps around the track in Bahrain, but still seem to be struggling with porpoising (bouncing), despite changes to the side pods.

The lack of dominance in testing has caused Hamilton to drop below Verstappen in the Bahrain GP betting odds. Lewis is now second on the board, with odds ranging from +200 to +250.

Sportsbooks seem to think the team will figure things out throughout the season, as Hamilton still tops the odds boards to win the championship this year.

Ferrari

Ferrari has been consistent throughout both the Barcelona and Bahrain testing sessions, putting up impressive lap times in both. The team couldn’t have asked for better pre-season performance.

Everyone seems to agree that the car looks fast. When it comes to reliability, there have been no issues that cause major concern. The team is still dealing with its fair share of porpoising, but it is improving as the weeks go on.

Leclerc commented that the bounce has gone down significantly since Barcelona as team engineers continue to figure out how to control it.

There has been a lot of speculation that Ferrari has finally done what it needs to bridge the gap with Mercedes and Red Bull.

With the team’s solid and consistent performance throughout the past few weeks, there is some value in taking Leclerc to finish in the top three at +120 at BetMGM Sportsbook.

McClaren

Things did not go as planned for McClaren this past weekend. Daniel Ricciardo was out due to a positive COVID-19 test. The team is hopeful he will be back in time for the race, but not having testing sessions on the desert track before the season starts isn’t optimal.

His teammate Lando Norris dealt with breaking and overheating issues that cost him a ton of testing time as well. With these problems, the team will likely fall in the middle of the pack for the first race of the season.

Haas

It wouldn’t be Haas if there weren’t problems. The team missed the first day of testing due to freight delays but were able to make some of that up with late testing sessions on Day 2.

The best part was that once the car actually got on the track, it looked fast. In a turn of events nobody expected, Schumacher put up the second-fastest time at Bahrain testing.

Is this the year Haas finally doesn’t get lapped? Nobody is saying this is a winning team just yet, but it would be nice to see them be competitive this season.

2022 F1 Driver’s Championship Odds

Lewis Hamilton
Bet now
+135
Bet now
+175
Bet now
+140
Max Verstappen
Bet now
+180
Bet now
+185
Bet now
+200
George Russell
Bet now
+800
Bet now
+650
Bet now
+700
Charles Leclerc
Bet now
+800
Bet now
+750
Bet now
+600
Carlos Sainz Jr.
Bet now
+1400
Bet now
+1600
Bet now
+1000
Lando Norris
Bet now
+2200
Bet now
+1800
Bet now
+2200
Sergio Perez
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+5000
Bet now
+4000
Daniel Ricciardo
Bet now
+6500
Bet now
+3100
Bet now
+5000
Fernando Alonso
Bet now
+10000
Bet now
+6500
Bet now
+8000
Esteban Ocon
Bet now
+10000
Bet now
+6500
Bet now
+10000
Photo by Associated Press
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Written by
Nicole Russo

Nicole Russo is the Brand Content Strategist for TheLines.com. Previously, she covered the gambling industries in Tennessee and Indiana as a content editor for PlayTenn.com and PlayIndiana.com. She comes from the world of poker, leading the marketing efforts for online poker in Nevada and New Jersey with the WSOP. Russo also assisted with the marketing efforts for the Caesars Sportsbook launch in 2019.

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