Formula 1 Chinese Grand Prix Predictions 4/14/18 Who Will Win?

The front row lockout was their second in a row after Vettel beat Raikkonen to pole last weekend in Bahrain.

The Scuderia left Raikkonen out to hold up the now second-placed Bottas, but it was the safety vehicle that would truly change the face of this race. On that day it was Vettel's Red Bull, and here the German - now dressed in Ferrari red - could not hide his enthusiasm. Max Verstappen led the way ahead of Daniel Ricciardo, who missed a lot of the early running after suffering a dramatic turbo failure in the morning practice session.

Nico Hulkenberg took seventh for Renault at the front of a tight midfield battle, with former teammate Sergio Perez in eighth place for Force India.

Carlos Sainz in the other Renault was ninth with Romain Grosjean rounding out the top 10 for Haas.

It was not a good session for McLaren.

Verstappen's aggressive driving style has once again been brought into question after he put both himself and Vettel into a spin and essentially ruled himself out of at least a podium finish.

Vettel, who finished second in Shanghai previous year, has five career podium finishes at this race but his only win came all the way back in 2009, so don't be surprised if Hamilton and Mercedes get back to their winning ways this weekend.

Speaking after qualifying, Vettel waxed lyrical about the handling of his auto.

"We have seen the competitive picture change quickly over the past three races and it's clear that we still have much to understand about our auto and how to get the best from the tyres". I was very happy with the settings I had from the beginning.

"But I think it's also a track where you just need to get in and find that sweet spot and if you are a little bit out then easily you drop a little bit of time".

"Thank you guys, great qualifying, great auto", said Vettel, who also started from pole in Bahrain last weekend, over the team radio. "We thought coming into today that we would be fighting for pole position but it was definitely out of reach today".

"We've shown in the past that we have recovered from hard periods, and I have actually started to appreciate the hard days because they make us progress and understand our auto better", he explained. "We have nothing that you could change like that".

"On paper, this track is easier for overtaking than Bahrain, so hopefully tomorrow we can make up for what we lost today".

Ferrari made Formula One rivals sit up and take notice after an ominous show of speed in qualifying for Sunday's Chinese Grand Prix.