Formula 1 betting: Charles Leclerc is favored to beat Max Verstappen in Hungary

·3 min read

Ferrari is favored to get a win at the Hungaroring.

Max Verstappen has seven wins through the first 12 races of the season but he’s not favored to get win No. 8 on Sunday at the Formula 1 Hungarian Grand Prix (9 a.m. ET, ESPN). That honor goes to Charles Leclerc, who is +110 to win the race at BetMGM after he spun into the wall while leading the French Grand Prix.

Leclerc won the pole at the French Grand Prix and appeared to have Verstappen covered. Verstappen had a faster car in a straight line but he couldn’t hang with Leclerc in the corners enough to get a run down the straightaways to make a good pass attempt.

There is far less straightaway at the Hungaroring than at the Circuit Paul Ricard. Couple that with some high-speed corners — the places where Ferrari has really excelled in 2022 — and it’s easy to see why Leclerc is the favorite.

Charles Leclerc kept Max Verstappen at bay until he crashed out of Sunday's Formula 1 French Grand Prix. (Photo by Victor LOCHON/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Charles Leclerc kept Max Verstappen at bay until he crashed out of Sunday's Formula 1 French Grand Prix. (Photo by Victor LOCHON/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

Leclerc’s Ferrari teammate Carlos Sainz is the No. 3 favorite to win the race at +600 while Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton is the No. 4 favorite at +1000. Hamilton has scored four consecutive podium finishes and has finished no worse than eighth in any of the last eight races. Verstappen’s Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez is at +1600 while Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate George Russell is at +2000.

The Hungarian Grand Prix is the final race before the annual F1 summer break. The next race isn’t until Spa on the final weekend of August. F1 teams are mandated to close their shops during the summer break so team personnel can recharge and relax for a bit during the break before resuming the season in the late summer. The second part of the season will include 10 races in less than three months and begin with three races in three weeks at Spa, Zandvoort and Monza.

Here are a few of the bets we like ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix.

A Ferrari to qualify on pole (-165)

How favored is Ferrari here? Well, it’s +150 to take a Red Bull car or +800 for a Mercedes. Instead of putting all of our eggs in the Leclerc basket we’ll take the lower odds and couple Carlos Sainz too.

An Alfa Romeo to finish ahead of an Aston Martin (-145)

The Aston Martin doesn’t seem suited to a track like the Hungaroring and Valtteri Bottas could be good value at +120 to finish in the top 10.

Verstappen and Leclerc won’t finish 1-2 (-115)

The odds for a 1-2 finish are the same as they are for someone else breaking into the top two. And it sure feels more likely that any other combination will finish in the top two spots, especially with Sainz sitting at +600 to win the race.

Charles Leclerc to win Free Practice 1 (+125)

Leclerc has higher odds to win FP1 than he does the race. And he’s been a more reliable bet for FP1. With a track that seems well-suited to Ferrari’s car, we’ll roll the dice with Leclerc to win FP1 again.

Charles Leclerc to post the race’s fastest lap (+175)

If Leclerc is around at the end of the race he should have the pace to prevent Verstappen from being in DRS range and getting a speed boost on the straightaway.