The Mercedes AMG outfit roll into Shanghai on the back of three consecutive wins and two back-to-back 1-2 finishes. Nico Rosberg remains on top of the standings, but team-mate Lewis Hamilton has won the last two races and is breathing down his neck.
Hamilton was two wins and two pole positions in 2014 so far, and was brilliant in defence in Bahrain last time out against his team-mate.
“The last race in Bahrain was fantastic: not just for us as a team but for the sport and I’m sure it won’t be the last time we see a great show this year,” said Hamilton. “I’m in a really good place at the moment and walking around the garage too, you can see the positive energy within the team right now. Everyone is focused on getting the maximum from these early races and continuing to build beyond the strong start we’ve made to the season.
“I’ve had some ups and downs in China. On one side I’ve only finished outside of the podium places twice at this circuit. On the other, in my first season in Formula One I threw away a championship lead here by going into the gravel coming into the pits. Generally, though, I’m getting stronger every time I come to this track and it suits my driving style quite well.
“The aim, as always, is to win and if I could make it three in a row this weekend that would be incredible.”
While Rosberg won the opening race of the season in Australia, he has finished second to his team-mate in Malaysia and Bahrain, but not without a fight. He is also a previous winner in China, having won in 2012 from pole position.
”Even though the last race was a bit disappointing from my perspective in terms of the result, it’s been great to see all the positive comments that came afterwards,” said Rosberg. “We’ve demonstrated already that we’re pushing harder than ever to stay ahead of the pack. It will only get more difficult as the season goes on but I’ve got confidence in the team. Every day and in every area you can see that determination to win. This gives you a big boost as a driver: to know the people around you want it just as badly as you do.
“I’ve got good memories from China after taking my first pole position and race win in Formula One at this circuit in 2012. The layout seems to suit my driving style, it’s a track I enjoy racing at and I want to be back on that top step of the podium this weekend.”
Technical Executive Director Paddy Lowe commented that he was pleased his team put on a good show in Bahrain, and expected nothing less from his two drivers.
“We were pleased to put on a good show in Bahrain and our confidence in the performance of the car continues to grow,” said Lowe. “We also have two highly competitive drivers in Lewis and Nico, which is exactly how racing drivers should be and exactly what the fans want to see. After two consecutive one-two finishes, there’s a good atmosphere within the team.
“The fans in China are always very enthusiastic, so hopefully we can give them some more entertainment this weekend. The Shanghai International Circuit has traditionally been one of contrasting fortunes for the team. 2012 marked the first win for the Silver Arrows since returning to Formula One two years earlier, while 2013 produced a podium finish. However, both also saw retirements for one of our cars and the latter arguably should have yielded a better result after a strong qualifying performance.”