red Bull drivers Sergio Perez
Red Bull drivers Sergio Perez, of Mexico, left, and Max Verstappen, of the Netherlands, celebrate after the qualifying session for the Formula One U.S. Grand Prix auto race at the Circuit of the Americas, Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021, in Austin, Texas. Verstappen finished first and Perez placed third. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)


Patrick Werkmeister

From the Gran Premio De La Ciudad De México, the battle between Mercedes and Red Bull heats up with only 5 races remaining. After Mercedes earned their first lockout of the season at the top during qualifying, Max Verstappen and Red Bull will have their work cut out for them. Although Max is in a tough position to finish on top in this one, he has proven he is the fastest driver in the fastest car and the momentum for him seems to be building. With that in mind, here are the best props and bets I love for the Mexican Grand Prix.

Max Verstappen to Win (+120)
With Max a full four-tenths of a second off pace of Lewis Hamilton in Q3, he will start 3rd on the grid and will have to get work on the Mercedes team early. Although he wasn’t able to deliver the results they wanted in qualifying, Red Bull looked exceptionally fast during practice sessions and Q1 and 2. Despite the disappointing session, Max seemed calm on Saturday after he said “P3 isn’t so bad considering we were really struggling to get the tires to work today”. Red Bull will need to be better prepared for Sunday and if they are they will be rewarded. While Mercedes has the top two starting spots locked up, the track is very tight and has plenty of spots that are prime for overtaking. With Red Bull still slightly Behind Mercedes in the constructors’ standings, they will be aggressive and seize every opportunity they get. Take Max to stay focused in this one and secure his first victory in Mexico.

Sergio Perez Podium Finish (+150)
After putting up the best recorded time in practice session 3, Sergio’s quickness was on full display Friday and Saturday in his home country. While it was a very impressive start for Checo, he only qualified for 4th on the grid for Sunday’s race. However, overall Red Bull and their drivers looked tough to beat to start the weekend. Last time out in Texas, he and his Red Bull teammate both stood on the podium where Max took home 1st place points for the drivers’ championship. Now that it’s the home stretch, these two are really putting together some fine performances. Although they are below the dominant Mercedes cars; their grid placement should not be a huge factor in the outcome. At odds of +150, this prop has tremendous value. Due to the fact that this is a home race for him and he has shown he can dominate; I would put Sergio as a high favorite to be in the top 3. Take Perez to get a podium where Red Bull should prevail. 

Daniel Ricciardo Top 6 Finish (+140)
While team McLaren didn’t have the most ideal qualifying sessions, Daniel Ricciardo was able to secure 7th on the grid and somewhat offset Lando Norris’s 18th starting position. The McLaren driver will once again be ahead of his normally quicker teammate, Lando Norris, due to the use of additional power unit elements. Although he will already be near the top six to start this Grand Prix, Ricciardo will have to at least overcome the quick Ferraris that surround him. However, recently he has shown he can out pace any competitor on the track. His run in Q3 was a measly two-hundredths of a second off pace with Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz, who will start sixth on the grid. McLaren is in direct competition with Ferrari where they only have a three and a half-point lead at the moment going into Sunday. Daniel will be leading an all-out push for McLaren as they hope to keep their podium dreams alive for the constructors’ championship. While this is a value pick, I certainly like his chances at earning a spot in the top 6. Expect Ricciardo to stay efficient throughout the race and not make mistakes while placing in the top 6.  

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