Shanghai will show us just how real Ferrari’s pace is. Sebastian Vettel scored a popular victory in Melbourne and the Italian team confirmed the positive result by also winning the Bahrain Grand Prix, which means that a third straight success would most definitely put pressure on Mercedes.
Shanghai will not only test both teams’ chassis but the notorious long backstraight will also give an idea of where Scuderia Ferrari’s power unit is in comparison to Mercedes. F1 needs a close fight this season and many are already dreaming about finally seeing a proper Vettel-Hamilton fight until the end in 2018. Statistics would make a Ferrari win significant, too. China has undoubtedly been a Mercedes stronghold since it returned to F1 in 2010 — it has been on pole at every race stretching back to 2012 and has only once failed to score at least a podium.
Join us in the morning for the latest updates and results from the Shanghai International Circuit as the first practice session ahead of the 2018 Chinese Grand Prix is about to start, with Scuderia Ferrari drivers Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen at the wheel of the SF71H, ready to once again challenge Mercedes and Red Bull.