Lewis Hamilton put behind a series of near-misses to become the seventh different winner on the F1 calendar in Montreal and the McLaren driver now leads the World Championship standings by two points from Fernando Alonso, with hat-trick seeking Sebastian Vettel a point further behind.
Hamilton's two-stop strategy in Canada was a triumph for McLaren and it gave the team their fifth win out of the last seven seasons at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Hamilton gained his first ever F1 triumph in Montreal back in 2007 and, having belatedly broke his duck in 2012, we believe there are more to come this year.
Hamilton is 13/8 favourite at BetVictor.com
to regain the World crown he won in 2008; in the immediate aftermath of his win at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve he was put in at 2/1 to win a second title but that was quickly snapped up as it looks increasingly likely that the 2012 drivers' championship will develop into a three-horse race with Vettel 11/4 and Alonso 3/1.
If the race was a personal triumph for Hamilton it was anything but for teammate Jenson Button who was lapped before finishing 16th of 20 finishers. Having driven one of the great races of recent years to win the corresponding race in 2011, albeit a wet race, Button was at a loss to explain why he could not get competitive at the weekend and he faces a difficult couple of weeks before the circus moves to Valencia and the European GP.
Vettel is seeking a hat-trick in the European Grand Prix at Valencia and is 11/4 at BetVictor.com
behind 13/8 Hamilton with Webber 16s and 20/1 Bar. Vettel was electric in qualification in Montreal but lost some of that superiority on raceday although his fourth placed finish was as much down to tactics as it was to the speed and performance of the car.
Back on home soil Alonso will want to improve on his fifth place in Canada and the Spaniard felt the car had made a significant improvement last weekend, but he was very concerned as to why his tyres deteriorated so badly in relationship to the others on a one-stop strategy. Ferrari return to Europe optimistic that they can compete for the win in both Valencia and Silverstone.
Seven races and seven different winners but we believe the battle for the 2012 F1 Drivers' Championship is down to three; we have been with Hamilton for the whole of this fascinating season to date and feel that Montreal could be pivotal in the destination of the Title.
For this weekend's European GP, in terms of who might win, BetVictor.com
Lewis Hamilton 11/4
Fernando Alonso 7/2
Sebastian Vettel 4/1
Nico Rosberg 12/1
Kimi Raikkonen 14/1
Romain Grosjean 14/1
Mark Webber 14/1
Jenson Button 14/1
For F1 title (with current points in brackets), in terms of who might win, BetVictor.com
Lewis Hamilton 13/8 (88)
Sebastian Vettel 11/4 (85)
Fernando Alonso 3/1 (86)
Kimi Raikkonen 20/1 (55)
Mark Webber 20/1 (79)
Nico Rosberg 20/1 (67)
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