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hamilton wins 2008 british f1 gp

Montoya: McLaren dark horse but Max will win at Silverstone

hamilton wins 2008 british f1 gp

Juan Pablo Montoya has gone out on a limb for his former Formula 1 team McLaren, suggesting they could be the dark horses at this weekend’s British Grand Prix but is sure that runaway World Championship leader Max Verstappen will win the race on Sunday

The time is right for Red Bull to be challenged by a dark horse, as the F1 World Champions and their ace driver Max Verstappen are on a remarkable winning streak. Set to match the 11 consecutive victories recorded by Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost for McLaren, in 1988.

That record could well stand if Lando Norris or Oscar Piastri cause one of the greatest upsets in F1’s recent history (much like Daniel Ricciardo did for them at Monza in 2021) and win the British Grand Prix on Sunday.

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An F1 favourite during his time in the top flight, Montoya believes his former McLaren team could surprise on the back of a strong fourth place for Norris in Austria last Sunday. The MCL60 responded well to a raft of updates bolted to the Englishman’s car at Red Bull Ring.

Speaking ahead of the weekend in England, Montoya told VegasInsider: “McLaren is the dark horse for Silverstone. After what they showed they can do, they might run good or they underperform completely.

“McLaren surprised me by how strong they were at the Red Bull ring. Ferrari as well. They were better than expected so it wouldn’t surprise me to see a Ferrari or McLaren doing well.

“I wasn’t in the garage so I don’t know if they had a massive upgrade on the car for Red Bull Ring, they found something that made their car better because the performance was huge,” added Montoya. Indeed Norris has new parts on his car, but Piastri did not. The difference was evident.

Montoya: McLaren dark horse but Max will win at Silverstone F1 Grand Prix of Great Britain f1 preview betting

74th British Grand Prix winner odds according to Betway:

  1. Max Verstappen at 3/10
  2. Sergio Pérez at 8/1
  3. Lewis Hamilton at 9/1
  4. Charles Leclerc at 11/1
  5. Fernando Alonso at 14/1
  6. Carlos Sainz at 22/1
  7. George Russell at 20/1
  8. Lando Norris at 50/1
  9. Lance Stroll 150/1
  10. Esteban Ocon at 200/1

Silverstone has been kind to McLaren over the years, with 14 victories at the former airfield. The first in 1973 when American driver Peter Revson won a chaotic race, and the last time when Lewis Hamilton won on home soil for the first time back in 2008, his first F1 title-winning year.

Montoya also went with a ‘safer’ prediction, to claim that Aston Martin will be in the hunt too. With Fernando Alonso scoring points in every race, and lying third in the Championship, he could upset the Red Bull rampage, while teammate Lance Stroll finds form in a car capable of much more than he is able to extract.

Nevertheless, Montoya suggests that Silverstone, at the doorstep Aston Martin’s ultra-modern HQ, might favour Lance Stroll’s team: “Silverstone is tricky because it’s a really fast track. You would think that Aston Martin will be really strong.

“They seem to have a lot of mechanical corner grip and slow corner grip. So, from that point of view, it would be an Aston-type of track. It is their home grand prix as well so I’m sure they want to run well,” added the 47-year-old Columbian.

Montoya: I was kind of disappointed with Mercedes at the Red Bull Ring

Mercedes aim to recapture momentum with Silverstone upgrades

On the downside, Montoya expected a lot more from Mercedes since ditching their ill-fated zero-sidepod concept: “I was kind of disappointed with Mercedes at the Red Bull Ring. I don’t know if they had balance issues, not sure what happened.

“I’ve always been a fan of how well Mercedes works. Toto [Wolff] and his way of working and driving the team around I think is really good, I’m a big fan of that. For me to see him struggle and work through it and get better, it’s always fascinating. Silverstone is a tough place but Mercedes should perform better there. From a Mercedes point of view, they will perform better.”

Barring the McLaren “dark horse” shocking the Bulls or Alonso blowing the roof off of F1, Montoya covered his bold predictions with a reality check: “Max Verstappen is going to win. I think it would be amazing if he is going to win all the races and it would shut everybody up and that would be pretty cool.

“The number one question mark is, what will happen with Checo Perez? Is Checo going to pull it together and get a lap in qualifying?”

“It gets to a point where he needs to stop trying so hard because the car is fast enough. It’s okay if you make it to Q3 being sixth or seventh and being six-tenths off your teammate. And then in Q3 you try and see what happens. He just needs to see what happens and put a banker lap for top five and then give it his all.

“Is Perez going to be on the podium? I’m going to say 90% yes. Is he going to be second? I’m not so sure. I see him finishing at number three and then Ferrari, in my opinion, will most likely take the number two spot. And then everybody else will be right there,” added Montoya, with a final look into his Crystal Ball.