New lap record as Vettel takes pole at Chinese GP


It's still early, but it looks like Ferrari is back.

ESPN rounds up the main talking points from qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix where Sebastian Vettel pipped teammate Kimi Raikkonen to pole position by 0.087s.

Valtteri Bottas held off a late surge from Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen to finish second, albeit nine seconds down on a jubilant Ricciardo.

The Italian glamour team last won in China in 2013.

Although he put up a fight against Ricciardo's passing attempt Bottas concedes there was little he could do with such a significant tyre disadvantage.

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"Yes we are", he said.

The Shanghai International Circuit is expected to be a lot warmer today than yesterday's windy and cold conditions. "But it was definitely out of reach today". But he made a mistake, locked up - it happens with a tailwind down that straight - I guess he misjudged and compromised both our races. He's an incredible driver so he just needs to fine tune and take a little bit of aggressivity out, and it's just too much.

"The race was going pretty well for us until and we were looking strong all the way until the Safety Car". Though Vettel is the favorite, Hamilton seems like the guy to beat based on his history at the track. Vettel is off to his best start in the series since 2011, when he won 11 races and claimed the series title.

Daniel Ricciardo snatched victory in China from Mercedes and Ferrari on Sunday, after his Aston Martin Red Bull team took advantage of a safety vehicle on lap 31 to put fresh tyres on both their cars.

Red Bull's Australian driver Daniel Ricciardo celebrates winning the Formula One Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai on April 15, 2018. In Q2 just 0.3s separated five cars from ninth to 13th and with mixed tyre strategies we appear to be set for another enthralling race for the lower points positions. According to oddsmakers at YouWager, Sebastian Vettel is the current favorite, as he is getting odds of -175 to win. The Briton described him using an expletive when watching a replay after the race, and said Verstappen had shown a lack of respect. I think he can do the same today.

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Saturday qualifying was chilly and windy, and damp in places from overnight rain.

Hamilton is being hopeful.

Star of the session: Raikkonen has really been the star of the weekend so far and can consider himself quite unlucky to not be on pole position.

Hamilton cut a frustrated figure as Ferrari ended Mercedes' six-year grip on Chinese Grand Prix pole in emphatic fashion on Saturday. He enthused about his Ferrari vehicle over the team radio, calling it "great qualifying, great car".

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