Shanghai International Circuit, 2018

Risk of rain in practice but race should be dry

2018 Chinese Grand Prix weather

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Last year Friday running at the Chinese Grand Prix was badly disrupted due to fog. The conditions limited drivers to a maximum of eight laps during the opening practice session, and the session was cancelled entirely due to the poor visibility conditions, which prevented the medical helicopter from being used.

Friday could again see the worst of the weekend’s weather this year. A band of rain is expected to reach the track tomorrow, but forecasts vary as to exactly when it might arrive. Some indicate the weather won’t take a turn for the worst until after the second practice session has ended, at 3:30pm local time. A few thunderstorms are possible later in the day.

The rain will last into Saturday and while there’s a good chance it could affect final practice, by qualifying the skies should be clearing.

Temperatures will begin on the low side and will fall as the weekend goes on. Friday could see air temperatures rise to 20C but the mercury will drop as the rain arrives and could be in the mid-teens as Q1 begins.

On race day the sun should finally appear but air temperatures are still likely to remain in the 17C region. This will be slightly higher than last year, when the race started on a damp track.

However compared to last weekend’s race the teams will experience much cooler conditions on the whole. As we’ve seen already this can have a strong effect on how will the cars perform and use their tyres. Mercedes favour cooler temperatures while the likes of Ferrari and Haas expect to miss the warmth of Bahrain.

For more updates on the track conditions during each session keep an eye on RaceFans Live and the RaceFans Twitter account.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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7 comments on “Risk of rain in practice but race should be dry”

  1. We just can’t catch a lucky break can we? When is the last time we’ve had a wet race?

    1. Singapore 2017?

      1. Heh, that comment got Vettel’s attention @anunaki :-)

    1. It is indeed Great, I can’t wait!

  2. I don’t care as long as it doesn’t affect qualifying at all, which it shouldn’t (and hopefully won’t) according to the weather forecast. BTW, why did they move the Chinese GP from the late-season flyaway phase to the early-season one in the first place? This GP was initially held in late-September, and then in October from 2005 to 2008 before moving to April in 2009. I’d say the late-September slot was the best temperature-wise as the risk of the daytime temperatures falling into around 15 degrees Celcius or, i.e., mid-teens is lower at that time of year than it is this month.

  3. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
    12th April 2018, 18:43

    Lack of dry practice can add a spicy ingredient in itself as teams struggle to dial in

Comments are closed.