F1 Fantasy 2022: Azerbaijan GP

Formula One is back this weekend and so too is Stephen Clibbon's F1 Fantasy preview! Our resident F1 fanatic looks ahead to the eighth race of the season - the Baku Grand Prix in Azerbaijan - and shares his top tips for the weekend.

Stephen Clibbon

As we reach the eighth race on the circuit with the Azerbaijan GP in Baku., not only is the F1 2022 Season hotting up but so too is F1 Fantasy!

Since the first Grand Prix in Baku – held in 2016 as the European Grand Prix – we have had some very entertaining and drama-filled race weekends.

The Azerbaijan GP has been held three times and has been won by a different driver every year, but only by two different constructors.

This year could add a fourth different winner with two of the lead runners coming from those same two constructors.

So, what is the Baku F1 circuit like?

Baku is another street race after we have already seen three this season at Jeddah, Melbourne and Monaco.

It is however is a mixture of wide open and open like Melbourne, tight and twisty like Monaco, with a blistering high speed straight like at Jeddah.

This track really offers a little bit of all three and blends them into a really entertaining race weekend where drivers need to be at their best in order to maximise their outcome.

Where do we stand in F1 Fantasy?

If like me you have had two terrible weekends in your F1 Fantasy, now could be the time to look to play your first half of the season wildcard.

A lot of teams have shown their intent with recent car upgrades and where they are likely to be in the field until the second half of the season.

After a promising start to the season, the Haas has seemed to have taken steps back over the recent race weekends.

This hasn’t all be down to their performance and they have been unlikely but they certainly aren’t going to be challenging the top of the midfield as they promised to do at the start of the season.

Ferrari are a team still promising a title fight in both the Drivers’ and the Constructors’ Championship despite Charles Leclerc not managing to get on the podium in the last two races.

George Russell has been quietly going about his business and finds himself in 4th in both the driver championship and the F1 Fantasy points, while the man he replaced Valtteri Bottas has amassed 140 Fantasy points so far this season.

Bottas still costs less than $10M and his total score beats 7 drivers on the grid who cost more than him still in the fantasy listings. Is it time to get the Fin in your team?

The man leading the drivers’ championship, Max Verstappen, heads to Baku with a score to settle. Max has yet to find himself on the podium for the Azerbaijan GP having also had three DNFs over his four races there.

We spoke last race weekend about Leclerc’s bad luck at Monaco, should Max fail to find himself on the podium this weekend in Baku, I think it could be safe to agree that Azerbaijan will be to Max, what Monaco is to Charles.

I do however, see the Red Bull simply having too much for Ferrari and any other car this weekend.

After having already won in Jeddah and Monaco, the tracks most like Baku, I can only see the straight-line speed the Red Bull is currently being able to offer offering Verstappen not only his first podium be his first win at Baku this weekend.

The bookies seem to agree, with them having Max sitting at 1.9 for the win. You can however get Verstappen at an impressive 2.25 second favourtie to take pole position this weekend.

In terms of Fantasy, it is also worth noting that Max Verstappen is the only driver who is on for bonus streak points this weekend also.

If he manages to finish in the top 10 this weekend, he will be awarded a bonus 10 points to his weekend total, with that in mind could this be the weekend to play your first Mega Driver of the season?

We currently have a very close battle in the FansBet Blog F1 Fantasy league. There is currently only 19 points separating the top 3 and less than 150 separating the top 10.

After two poor weeks for my team, we are currently sitting on 1,313 points but with both our Mega Driver and wildcard still to play for the first half of the season.

How many points have you managed to get in the opening seven rounds? Which driver do you wish you’d put in your team earlier?

As always, feel free to join the FansBet F1 Fantasy league by using the code f085821697 in the join/create league section, let us know how you are getting on and if you have any top tips of your own.

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