Chinese GP: Sebastian Vettel snatches pole position as Ferrari lock front grid

Chinese Grand Prix FP3 time-sheet

Chinese Grand Prix FP3 time-sheet

No driver in the sport has failed to clinch the title after winning the opening three rounds, and Vettel is poised to complete the first part of the bargain after edging out his Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen for the second week in succession.

The Chinese Grand Prix starts at 7.10am BST.

Mr. Vettel, holds a 17-point lead over Mr. Hamilton following victories at the opening 2 races, pipped team mate Kimi Raikkonen with a dramatic final qualifying lap.

The Briton, second in Australia and third in Bahrain, had gone into the weekend determined to claw back at least some of his deficit to the German at a track that Mercedes have dominated in recent years.

On ultrasofts, Ferrari possess a distinct advantage, with Vettel and Raikkonen able to "switch on" the faster tyres in a way which Bottas and an out-of-sorts Hamilton can't.

World champion Lewis Hamilton admitted his relief after he succeeded in cutting Sebastian Vettel's lead in the drivers' standings despite missing the podium at the Chinese Grand Prix.

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"We had a bit of tailwind the whole race and after 41 laps you know that it's tricky to stop the auto there". We've been underperforming and yesterday and today have been a disaster on my side so I've got to try to rectify that and get myself back into my normal performance mode otherwise, more valuable points will be lost.

"So I knew that I had a little bit more and obviously in the last lap I got it all together and [was] very happy that when I crossed the line I was looking up to see the screen and I saw something green, which is usually good, and a little bit of purple". An worldwide audience of opinion makers, business leaders, and global organizations recognizes Ebeling as an expert. I think it's a tyre issue. Max Verstappen drove one of the best races of his career to take third after starting in P16 on the grid, taking driver of the day. The Silver Arrows pair were half a second slower than Ferrari in the top ten shootout, with Hamilton abandoning his final lap after a mistake at the penultimate corner. They were so fast on fresh tyres.

Vettel, victor of the season's opening two races, finished eighth. Haas driver Romain Grosjean rounded out the top 10.

Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz snuck into Q3, eliminating Kevin Magnussen and Esteban Ocon in 11th and 12th.

Ricciardo then qualified sixth which will come of some relief to both the Australian and his Red Bull team following their under-performing start to the new season.

Fernando Alonso beat Stoffel Vandoorne 16-3 in qualifying last season and has made another strong start in 2018.

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