Should Glock’s bet on Vettel be allowed?

Debates and pollsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

A surprising detail to emerge from today’s press conference was that Timo Glock has bet money on Sebastian Vettel winning the drivers championship on Sunday.

Glock wouldn’t reveal how much money was riding on the outcome, saying: “I have my money on him to win the championship this weekend so he has to push for it.”

Competitors in other sports have been banned for betting on their rivals. Should F1 drivers be allowed to?


What’s the harm in allowing a driver to take a punt on a rival?

Just because they have a stake in another driver winning does not mean they would do something to influence the outcome.

Glock and Vettel race at opposite ends of the field in F1, so it makes little difference if the Virgin driver has a wager on the outcome of the championship.


When sportsmen bet on their rivals, the accusation that they will rig an event to ensure they win the bet cannot be far behind.

While Glock may not be in a position to take points off Vettel’s rivals there are obviously ways he could affect the race, particularly when his Virgin is being lapped.

None of this is to say that Glock would do such a thing. But he – or another driver in the same position – could do. And, as we’ve seen in the past at this very circuit, some drivers will try to manipulate races for their own reasons.

I say

I don’t think this is something Glock or any other driver should do. The potential for abuse and accusations of race-fixing are too great.

Clearly Vettel does not need any outside assistance to win the title this year. But if Fernando Alonso or Jenson Button were to collide with Glock while lapping him, even if it was entirely innocent, the knowledge of Glock’s wager would raise difficult questions.

To put it another way, imagine if Vitaly Petrov had bet money on Vettel winning the championship before last year’s title decider.

This is a fundamental matter of sporting ethics. Football, cricket, rugby and other sports have been dogged by betting scandals which have seen players fined, suspended, banned and even threatened with jail.

In F1, article 151(c) of the International Sporting Code forbids “act prejudicial to the interests of any competition or to the interests of motor sport generally”. This seems like exactly the sort of thing that clause should prevent.

You say

Should drivers be allowed to be on each other? Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.

Should F1 drivers be allowed to bet on each other?

  • Yes (15%)
  • No (78%)
  • No opinion (7%)

Total Voters: 275

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