Shanghai has been a Ferrari stronghold since it arrived on the F1 calendar four years ago.
With fairly cool but dry weather expected this weekend and Bridgestone bringing their harder compound tyres, I think we’ll see McLaren score their first win in China this weekend.
We’ve seen several times this year how tyre compounds and temperatures can have a profound influence on car and driver performance.
This weekend the track conditions and compounds seem to point towards McLaren having the upper hand: especially the fact Bridgestone are bringing their two hardest compounds of tyres.
We all remember Lewis Hamilton’s disastrous end to last year’s Chinese Grand Prix – but don’t forget how strongly he started the weekend. He put his McLaren on pole position and led comfortably at the start.
Ferrari, as ever, will be very close. But I’m getting an impression that Kimi Raikkonen has become the quicker of the two drivers once again. In a recent interview he said that at Spa he had gone back to an earlier setup configuration and it had improved his pace.
He was quicker than Massa at Spa (but crashed) and was very quick late in the race at Monza. At Singapore he was reeling in Massa and Hamilton when the safety car came out, then at Fuji he out-qualified Massa for the first time since the British Grand Prix.
Does Raikkonen now have the upper hand at Ferrari? If so, can Ferrari use him to get Massa ahead of Hamilton? Even if not, I’m sure come the end of the race they’ll have moved Raikkonen aside to elevate Massa:
1. Lewis Hamilton
2. Felipe Massa
3. Kimi Raikkonen
Japanese Grand Prix prediction results
The only person to correctly name Fernando Alonso as the winner of the Japanese Grand Prix was Yosu!
What do you think will be the top three for the Chinese Grand Prix? Make your podium predictions below…
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