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Hamilton hard to beat at home GP for Ricciardo

Thu, Jul 7, 1:58pm by Staff Writer

Daniel RicciardoDaniel Ricciardo will have mixed emotions heading into this week’s Formula One British Grand Prix.

It was at the Silverstone track that the Australian made his debut with the HRT five years ago, but he will be looking for a much better result than that 19th-place finish Sunday with Red Bull.

William Hill has Ricciardo at fourth favourite to win the British GP, but a long way behind Lewis Hamilton on $2.

Hamilton is tipped to overtake Nico Rosberg ($3) in the drivers’ championship with the win after claiming victory over his Mercedes teammate in dramatic fashion at the Austrian GP last week.

Encouragingly, Ricciardo is paying $3 for a podium finish and just $1.30 to make the top six, but first he has to overcome the engine power and tyre problems that saw his teammate Max Verstappen overtake him easily at the Red Bull Ring last week.

After easily outpacing Verstappen in qualifying, the Dutchman passed Ricciardo early in the race and the Aussie couldn’t keep up during the middle stint, finishing fifth.

Verstappen finished second in Austria and William Hill is paying $17 for the win at Silverstone.

“I don’t think there was too much difference with mine and Max’s set-up,” Ricciardo said after the race.

“The first few laps were strange. I got passed three times out of Turn 6, and it seemed like we had something going on there with the power mode,” he said.

Sebastian Vettel is third favourite for the win at $9 after his race blew up spectacular down the home straight last week, with teammate Kimi Raikkonen, who finished third in Austria paying $23.

The Mercedes driver was jeered and booed after he won in Austria following a last-lap collision with Rosberg, who limped home fourth with his overall lead cut to 11 points.

But with the halfway point in the season approaching, points are all important and neither driver is expected to make way for the other, especially given that Hamilton won his last two home races and has three overall.

The same expectation cannot be made for Hamilton’s fellow-Englishman Jenson Button of McLaren.

Button has never finished on the podium at Silverstone and is paying $251 for the win on the William Hill board, the same as teammate Fernando Alonso, who has finished on the podium in England every year since 2011.

The Silverstone track has a rich history, host of the first ever F1 race and has witnessed some of the greatest moments in the sport.

“Silverstone is one of the best tracks. I have always loved it,” Ricciardo told reporters this week. “The old and the new configuration have both been fun. It is fast, flowing, and one of the few circuits where you can really feel the fruits of downforce in a Formula One car. It is damn cool, and you can overtake, so it normally provides great racing.”

The British Grand Prix gets underway at 10 pm (AEST) Sunday.

Best Bet:  Lewis Hamilton to win at $2

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