Qual 1: Schuey on top

World champion Michael Schumacher stamped his authority on the Chinese Grand Prix with the fastest lap during pre-qualifying to grab the top spot on the time-sheets. His time of one minute 33.185 seconds edged out the hard-charging Kimi Raikkonen by 0.314 seconds

Qual 1: Schuey on top

The early part of Schumacher's lap had looked pretty wild as the Ferrari ace struggled for grip around the technical Shanghai circuit, but he originally pipped first man out team-mate Rubens Barrichello who appeared to have made a mistake in the final sector of the lap.

With the Bridgestone tyres appearing well suited to the Chinese venue, Raikkonen upset the form book to grab second after going out near the end of the session. Sauber's Giancarlo Fisichella produced a superb performance to put in the third fastest lap and his time of one minute 33.738 was just 0.553 seconds behind Schumacher.

Behind fourth fastest Barrichello, whose pre-qualifying time was 1m33.787s, was Sauber's Felipe Massa who just did not have enough pace to match team-mate Fisichella's time.

Ralf Schumacher showed that his absence from the cockpit had cost him no speed as he edged out Williams team-mate Juan Pablo Montoya for sixth. Former world champion Jacques Villeneuve, also making his return to F1, had a less successful time as he ended the session in 13th. He was given some consolation by the fact that he was quicker than Renault team-mate Fernando Alonso.

Jordan's Nick Heidfeld provided further evidence about Bridgestone's pace on the Shanghai circuit as he lifted his Ford-powered car ahead of where it normally is on the timesheets. His lap of one 1m34.808s was good enough for 15th, after he was a sensational sixth fastest in morning practice.

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