F1 Betting Strategy

F1 Betting on racing can largely be considered a niche market.

But with dozens of F1 betting markets available and access to cutting edge statistical analysis, there is any number of ways to approach F1 betting. Our detailed F1 betting guide will show you how to enhance your chances of making a profit betting on F1 this season.

The F1 Championship

In its current capacity, 11 teams made up of two cars participate in 21 Grand Prix across the globe. On a race weekend, teams will take part in three Free Practice sessions, a F1 Qualifying format – made up of three parts – and the Race.

The Race is the most important part of Formula One, with the Formula 1 points system awarding drivers for the highest finishing position. Currently, finishing first will earn you 25 Formula 1 points per race,18 points for a second-place finish and 15 points for finishing third on the podium. Formula 1 points scoring reduces gradually until 10th place.

These accumulated points across each race weekend are then totally at the end of the season, with the drivers ranked in the Formula 1 points standings. The driver which finishes the season with the most amounts of points is named as the FIA Formula One World Drivers Champion.

F1 Drivers Championship Winners Since 1996

Year Driver Team Points
1996 Damon Hill Williams 97
1997 Jacques Villeneuve Williams 81
1998 Mika Hakkinen McLaren 100
1999 Mika Hakkinen McLaren 76
2000 Michael Schumacher Ferrari 108
2001 Michael Schumacher Ferrari 123
2002 Michael Schumacher Ferrari 144
2003 Michael Schumacher Ferrari 93
2004 Michael Schumacher Ferrari 148
2005 Fernando Alonso Renault 133
2006 Fernando Alonso Renault 134
2007 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 110
2008 Lewis Hamilton McLaren 98
2009 Jenson Button Brawn 95
2010 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 256
2011 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 392
2012 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 281
2013 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 397
2014 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 384
2015 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 381

For the constructors – the car makers – their two drivers points are added together to form the FIA Formula One World Constructors Championship. The team with the most amount of combined points is awarded the title.

F1 Constructors Championship Winners Since 1996

Year Constuctor Points Drivers
1996 Williams 175 Damon Hill
Jacques Villeneuve
1997 Williams 123 Jacques Villeneuve
Heinz-Harald Frentzen
1998 McLaren 156 David Coulthard
Mika Hakkinen
1999 Ferrari 128 Michael Schumacher
Eddie Irvine
(Mika Salo)
2000 Ferrari 170 Michael Schumacher
Rubens Barrichello
2001 Ferrari 179 Michael Schumacher
Rubens Barrichello
2002 Ferrari 221 Michael Schumacher
Rubens Barrichello
2003 Ferrari 158 Michael Schumacher
Rubens Barrichello
2004 Ferrari 262 Michael Schumacher
Rubens Barrichello
2005 Renault 191 Fernando Alonso
Giancarlo Fisichella
2006 Renault 206 Fernando Alonso
Giancarlo Fisichella
2007 Ferrari 204 Felipe Massa
Kimi Raikkonen
2008 Ferrari 172 Kimi Raikkonen
Felipe Massa
2009 Brawn 172 Jenson Button
Rubens Barrichello
2010 Red Bull 498 Sebastian Vettel
Mark Webber
2011 Red Bull 650 Sebastian Vettel
Mark Webber
2012 Red Bull 460 Sebastian Vettel
Mark Webber
2013 Red Bull 596 Sebastian Vettel
Mark Webber
2014 Mercedes 701 Nico Rosberg
Lewis Hamilton
2015 Mercedes 703 Nico Rosberg
Lewis Hamilton

How to bet on Formula 1 – The basics

There are various factors that should be analysed when learning how to bet on Formula 1. The ability of the drivers and performance of their car might be the most obvious things to look at but, as is the case with golf betting, luck can also play a part. In order to gain an edge in F1 betting, bettors should look at historical individual and team performance factors whilst also, when possible, quanitfying the effect luck and other external factors might have.

Grid position

Driver position has varying importance depending on the track in question. Qualifying on pole at Monza has guaranteed a race win in 83.3% of the last 12 races, compared to the Canadian GP at Montreal where just 33% of drivers on pole went on to win – this highlights just how importance it is to look at a driver’s grid position in conjuction with the course results history in Formula 1 betting.

For circuits where it’s difficult to overtake – Monaco – bettors should consider a drivers ability to qualify high on the grid – where starting on pole can be a huge advantage.

In comparison circuits that are easier to overtake at  – Montreal for instance – can give bettors more chance of finding value when not betting on pole sitters.

Understanding the value of track position is vital for Formula 1 betting, and selecting a race winner before considering historical data should be avoided.

Tyres

Understanding tyre characteristics and how they perform is a significant part of learning how to bet on Formula 1. Here are a few areas to consider:

  • How track characteristics affect tyres
  • A team’s race weekend tyre strategy
  • Drivers racing style

Since returning to the sport as the tyre manufacturer, Pirelli have produced unpredictable tyres, which has created more excitement and overtaking opportunities, and made understanding tyre characteristics more vital for betting.

Weather

Formula 1 bettors should always check the weather forecast before and adjust their betting on qualifying and the race accordingly – compared to the effect weather can have on soccer betting, it is even more pronounced in F1 betting.

When the conditions are fine and the track hot, weather has little impact. However, once the track temperatures drop and the rain arrives it can cause havoc with the result. Research to consider:

  • Driver performance in poor weather – rookies may struggle
  • Historical weather data
  • Current weather forecast

Track characteristics

Understanding circuit characteristics and matching them with driver and car capabilities is a fundamental factor that anyone who wants to know how to bet on Formula 1 must be aware of.

Each circuit is distinctive, and should be treated different as each offers new challenges.

Take the Bahrain GP for instance; this Middle Eastern circuit has a number of key characteristics that will present a different challenge for the teams than at other circuits.

The track is made up of four long straights, all of which end in a high braking zone, offering clear overtaking opportunities.

There are also a number of challenging medium-speed corners that require good car balance. Therefore the track suits a set-up that sees a compromise between straight-line speed and cornering grip.

With drivers at full throttle for just 50% of the lap during the race (and 57% in qualifying), the demands on the engine are less extensive than half of the courses on the calendar.

Although the throttle might not be an issue, high temperature and low humidity could provide major challenges for the engines, while the circuit’s stop-start nature places a premium on the brakes – managing brake-wear is key.

Once you understand the track characteristics bettors should check practice and qualifying times to see which drivers and teams have their car dialled-in, and who doesn’t.

Once F1 bettors have gauged the track diagnostics and understood who are best set-up to perform you can consider who to bet on.

Team Strategies

Team strategy is an essential part of learning how to bet on Formula 1 and bettors should be fully aware of who influences what happens on the track.

Teams always look to gain an edge over their opposition through tyre tactics, car set-up or tactical pitstops. But they also implement team orders.

To prevent team orders affecting betting, bettors should play close attention to the standings for both the drivers’ and constructors’ championships.

Prior to the seasons start, understanding who are the number one drivers in each team will help you decide which number two drivers to avoid – knowing his teammate will be favoured.

Rule Changes

Keeping up-to-date and understanding the latest Formula 1 rules is paramount for successful betting.

The FIA constantly make rule changes to keep the sport exciting.  These rules can benefit or hurt specific teams and the same can be said for your betting, so bettors should keep track of the rule changes happening pre-season, and during the F1 calendar.

Knowledge is key to successful F1 betting

It is important to think of the bigger picture when betting on Formula 1, a racing incident/ bad pitstop or technical failure may have undone your thorough research for that race, but it’s only one race.

To be successful, F1 bettors must consider how they perform over five or more seasons and if possible, get access to information before anyone else.