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GP Week : Issue 38
>>F1PREVIEW v 5th Renault Best 16:1 shoRtest 9:1 According to the bookies, Renault is approximately half as likely to challenge for the Formula 1 constructors’ championship in 2009 as the new BrawnGP team. If you listen to Fernando Alonso and Renault’s Executive Director of Engineering Pat Symonds, however, you’ll hear a team high on confidence that it can put in another 2005/2006 style championship run. The issue of course lies with Alonso’s team-mate Nelson Piquet. The bookies really don’t rate Nelson, which in betting terms could work in their favour. He’s unfancied, and could really surprise the establishment. He’s been on terms with Alonso in testing and if he holds it all together, could be the perfect partner 6th Red Bull DRIVERS 3rd F ernando alonso 15th nelson Piquet Best 11:2 Best 200:1 shortest 3:1 shortest 66:1 there’s a reason alonso ranks behind only Raikkonen and hamilton in the betting stakes. In 2008 he nailed two wins in a car which, at the start of the season, could barely make the top ten. If his 2009 car is as good as it appears, he could very seriously challenge for the title. While Piquet is incredibly unlikely to be challenging for the title, odds of 200:1 seem excessively long. Best 34:1 shoRtest 14:1 Moving into the lower half of the betting odds we find Red Bull. It’s perhaps unsurprising to find the team in this half of the order, given that the squad has yet to take a race win, let alone put up anything which could resemble a championship assault. But with Adrian Newey and Geoff Willis heading up design, and Christian Horner at the head of the team, their ambition and talent base is clearly very high. The car looks like it’s going to be competitive in 2009, and their drivers, too, are capable of good things. While nobody expects them to challenge for the title, with such a vast shift in regulations this could be the perfect opportunity for the team to step up the ranks and start challenging the established order. DRIVERS 8th sebastien Vettel Best 25:1 11th Mark Webber Best 80:1 shortest 14:1 shortest 50:1 Red Bull’s driver odds are pretty amazing when you think about it. sure, Vettel is an incredible talent and a bold hope for the future, but finding him eighth in the list with shortest odds of 14:1 is staggering. Webber’s longest odds meanwhile find him at 80:1 after a winter mostly spent recovering from a broken leg. Vettel, on his day, has proven he can win races, whether he has the car under him to do this regularly is yet to be seen. 29