The busy month of October continues with a late night Formula 1 race in Japan.
The DraftKings Honda Japanese Grand Prix 2022 slate locks at 1 a.m. ET on Sunday.
1. Max Verstappen ($12,400) — Qualifying did not go his way and Verstappen pushed too hard to make up spots at Singapore. Suzuka should play into his strengths, and Max should once again be perched atop the podium.
2. Sergio Perez ($9,600) — Singapore is a traditional street circuit, and Checo might be the best street circuit driver in F1. It also helps that the Red Bull RB18 adapts to any track.
3. Charles Leclerc ($11,200) — The Ferraris aren’t as fast as the Red Bulls. The Leclerc-Verstappen battle fizzled out long ago. Red Bull just keeps getting faster and Ferrari has flat lined.
4. Carlos Sainz Jr ($9,000) — Compared to 2021, this has been a great season for Sainz. The early season expectations were quite lofty. Sainz has nine podiums and 13 top-5 finishes in 18 races.
5. Lewis Hamilton ($10,000) — There were high hopes heading into the Singapore Grand Prix, but we should have known better. Mercedes is the No. 3 constructor in 2022. The sample size is big enough at this point.
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6. Lando Norris ($8,000) — McLaren brought significant upgrades to Singapore and it worked. Norris finished fourth. Daniel Ricciardo finished fifth and his McLaren didn’t even have the updates.
7. George Russell ($8,600) — A lot went wrong for Russell at Marina Bay. Mercedes should bounce back in the Japanese Grand Prix. Russell could not show off his new power unit buried in traffic in the Singapore GP, but that could be a different story if he starts up front at Suzuka.
8. Pierre Gasly ($6,600) — AlphaTauri were supposed to compete with McLaren and Alpine this season. That belief quickly vanished, but things could have been a lot worse. Gasly has rebounded and earned a top-10 finish in three of the last four races. He finished eighth in his last Japanese Grand Prix (AlphaTuari — Toro Rosso).
9. Esteban Ocon ($5,600) — Alpine is on its heels. Oscar Piastri and now McLaren are leaving them in the dust. Ocon and Fernando Alonso ($7,400) have failed to earn points in each of the last two races. The Alpine cars have been fast this season, but they have experienced an unacceptable number of mechanical failures in 2022. The good news is that Suzuka is one of Ocon’s favorite tracks.
10. Alex Albon ($4,600) — In Round 17 at Singapore, Albon finished 17th but still managed to score 5 DKFP (12th). It’s nice to have Nicholas Latifi as a teammate (19th-place finish).
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