Chinese Grand Prix Win Simulations: What's McLaren's Ceiling?

Jim Sannes
Jim Sannes@JimSannes
Chinese Grand Prix Win Simulations: What's McLaren's Ceiling?

For the first time since 2019, Formula 1 is headed to Shanghai for the Chinese Grand Prix.

This means we haven't seen the cars at this circuit since the 2022 regulation changes. We can make educated guesses at which cars will benefit, but there is an element of unknown.

Despite that, the market is -- understandably -- treating this still as Red Bull's race to lose. Max Verstappen is -550 to win in FanDuel Sportsbook's F1 betting odds, putting his implied win odds at 84.6%.

This may be foolish, but my pre-practice betting model sees a bit more uncertainty. Here's the full run of sims before we see cars on track.

Top 6
Max Verstappen71.9%87.2%87.3%87.3%
Sergio Perez7.1%49.4%83.8%86.1%
Carlos Sainz7.0%51.5%83.8%86.0%
Charles Leclerc5.9%41.4%82.2%86.7%
Lando Norris5.3%41.1%81.2%85.7%
Oscar Piastri1.1%12.5%58.2%85.3%
Lewis Hamilton0.6%5.6%35.3%80.8%
View Full Table

As you'd expect when the model's below market on Verstappen, there's a bit of value on Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz. But Lando Norris being at 5.3% is likely a bigger surprise.

Norris has just one podium this year, and it came in the race where Verstappen had to retire early. He has finished behind Charles Leclerc in all four races and behind Sainz in his three races.

So, why would the sims view him as being in a similar tier?

It's due to the race pace Norris has had, especially the past two races. In Australia, Norris was within six seconds of both Ferraris and nearly 30 seconds clear of fourth place. He was also within shouting distance of Sainz and Leclerc in Japan.

Although it may be optimistic to think Norris can cash an outright at +3600, a podium at +230 odds is at least interesting. Ferrari should be favored to follow Red Bull, but Norris is viable, as well.

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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.