The Hungarian Grand Prix will wrap up a sad week that saw the funeral of Jules Bianchi.
The 25-year-old French driver died last week after being involved in a terrible crash in the Japanese GP last October. He was in coma since the accident. Most of the drivers attended his last services in Nice on Tuesday. After the funeral they headed to Budapest to prepare for the Hungarian GP. The race will start with a minute of silence in memory of Bianchi.
Two-times British world champion Lewis Hamilton is the favorite to win the race, according to gambling news. Bet365 considers him a 1.44 (4/9) top dog for both the race and qualification. His most likely challenger could be his Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, who is second favourite to win the race with odds of 3.25 (9/4) and with 2.75 (7/4) for pole position at Bet365. Last year’s event was won by Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who is 201.00 (200/1) underdog this time.
Though Ferrari looked like possible title challengers in the spring, they lost their momentum as the European F1 season unfolded. However, a high-downforce circuit could favour them at the Hungarian Grand Prix, as well as the tyre allocation. Pirelli will supply the medium and the soft compounds for the teams, and Ferrari did quite well on this type of tyres in Bahrain, as many of those, who follow sports scores might remember.
Daniel Ricciardo was able to win the Hungarian Grand Prix last year, however he should aim for a less ambitious goal this time. Red Bull have been struggling in the season so far, thanks to the new aerodynamic regulations. Still, they have the best chance to pick up a larger chunk of points at a high-downforce circuit, like the Hungaroring.
This season has been a disaster for McLaren so far. The new Honda power system is virtually still in experimental phase, which means the car is far from being competitive. However, the Hungarian GP with its slow but highly demanding layout could well be the race of the year for the Woking-based outfit.
Midway through the 2015 Formula One World Championship, the upcoming Hungarian Grand Prix will be dedicated to Jules Bianchi, who lost his life last week. F1 will remember the late Frenchman with several tributes this weekend. The FIA announced recently that they will retire Bianchi’s number 17 from Formula One, according to online mobile news.
Title-holder Lewis Hamilton attended Bianchi’s funeral, and also spoke about him in his preview for the Hungarian GP. He said, “I will be carrying Jules with me in my prayers and thoughts, not only this race but for the rest of my driving days. I know he’d want us to race hard as he did, and so I will.”
He added, ”For myself, I wished I had known him better. But from what I knew of him, he was a kind heart with a great spirit and a bright future. Now our sport embarks on a tough road ahead. We have been shown once more the dangers of our sport, that these should be respected and that we drivers commit ourselves to the chance that those dangers are there when we step into the car.”
Mercedes prepares for their 10th consecutive race with two drivers on the podium, which would be an all-time record in Formula One.
German Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg is looking forward to a weekend that might ease this stressful week in Formula One. The Hungarian Grand Prix will also be the last event before the one-month-long summer break, as keen followers of live sports results might know it. So, finishing on a high note would be crucial for the number one title-challenger before the well-deserved rest.
After being present at the funeral of Jules Bianchi, Rosberg naturally mentioned the late driver in the build up to the event at Hungaroring. He said, “He was a very talented driver and a good guy. My thoughts in these days are with his family and close friends. Everyone will be sharing the same feelings in the paddock this week, but we must race on and race hard for Jules – as he would have wanted to be doing himself.”
Last year’s Hungarian Grand Prix saw Lewis Hamilton refusing to let Rosberg to pass him though the team ordered him to do so. Rosberg answered the question about the incident diplomatically. He said, “The race here last year wasn’t ideal for me in the end, but it’s a proper circuit, in a beautiful city, with big crowds always filling the grandstands, so I’m looking forward to it and hoping bring home a stronger result this time around.”