We have some fine tuning to do tonight - Lewis Hamilton

Pierre Gasly

The long runs were once again very positive and I felt pretty comfortable.

Hamilton finished second and third in the first two races in Australia and Bahrain. As scene-setters for the race go this was a mighty opening, with one-tenth of a second separating the front four. Verstappen was slightly hampered on his flying lap after locking up and spinning on the final corner of his out lap and suffering a significant flat spot on his ultrasoft tyres. There was nothing between them and little behind.

The Shanghai International Circuit is a favourite of the reigning world champion, having secured pole six times and claimed victory five times.

The Briton trails Sebastian Vettel by 17 points heading into this weekend's grand prix after the German won the first two races of the season. Lowering the gap is crucial but Hamilton believes it can be done.

Max Verstappen says he will not change his style of racing despite drawing the ire of Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton after a collision at the Bahrain Grand Prix. "It's always been a good track for me", said Hamilton, who finished second in Australia and third in Bahrain.

Yet Mercedes have work to do.

While many were able to get straight into their programmes, Raikkonen had a minor delay after a software problem was discovered on his installation lap.

It is none other than Mercedes star Lewis Hamilton.

Equally the team seem to have suffered some in-race conservatism.

As in FP1, grip was at a premium and Hamilton and Raikkonen were among those to run off track as they explored the limits. A more aggressive outlook may have to be adopted.

"It's the same as I get back from a day like today and it's nearly a team of them - there will be a group here and a group back at the hotel and they're coordinating: "okay, he's left" and there will be a group there at the restaurant.it's sweet!" A win in China would be the kick-start they need but it will clearly not be easy.

"This weekend they are going to be hard to beat", he added.

He said: "It should be a good track for us but I think it is going to be a lot closer than you think".

In response, Ferrari's Vettel told the BBC: "The first two races have been quite different so it is not straightforward to predict the next one".

"But it has been a good day, we got through all the laps that we needed and got some good feedback about the vehicle".

Red Bull remain the big unknowns.

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