Can Hamilton bounce back at 2018 Chinese Grand Prix — Preview

The four-time world champion takes a hat to sign as he mingles with fans on Tuesday

We're certainly not saying this is a must-win for Hamilton but he has never won a championship in a year which he didn't claim a win in the opening three rounds.

The three-time race winner hinted he might talk to Hamilton during the third race of the season at the Shanghai International Circuit in China on Sunday, but admits it is not necessary as it was purely a racing incident.

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The pair clashed early during the Bahraini race, with a kissing of wheels causing Verstappen to suffer a puncture and to retire soon after.

It was the ultimate lesson that in sport, only the result matters. In his mind, Verstappen doesn't feel he has done anything wrong. "These things happen", said the 20-year-old Dutchman. "There's no reason for me to change anything".

Asked why he felt Hamilton had blamed him, the Dutch driver replied: "Why?"

Lewis Hamilton has endured a rather torrid start to the 2018 season - well, torrid by his standards. Schumacher's win in 2006 was the 91st and final time the seven-time world champion would stand on top of a Grand Prix podium. Starting from the second row in 3rd place, Alonso in the Ferrari F138 took the lead briefly on lap 5 before teammate Felipe Massa took over. However, an underwhelming first two races already has the Milton Keynes outfit playing catch-up.

"So I really hope that I'm able to climb the ladder and get back to where we've been working towards being in the last two races". As we all know he's such a talented driver. I mean, I was in the same place when I was young, similar age, or older actually.

But while his Haas team were hit hard by a double pit-stop failure at the season-opener in Australia, Steiner believes an element of jeopardy around pit stops generally benefits the F1 spectacle.

Get set for Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton to tangle again in the Chinese Grand Prix. But I mean I saw Max, for example, just now. Hopefully it keeps respect between you because I think it's important between drivers.

What did Verstappen say? The Silver Arrows have claimed five of the last six and it's hard to see them not adding to that record this weekend. But it is difficult to predict and we need to be patient.

Red Bull are also yet to show their hand, with both Daniel Ricicardo and Max Verstappen retiring in the first five laps in Bahrain. Will Verstappen defend himself as vigorously or adjust his reaction? There are still plenty of tracks that should suit the Ferrari better, including Monaco and Singapore, and there will be many more opportunities for Vettel to pick up wins, so we could be in for a gripping battle throughout the season.

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