Admitting that Mercedes were quicker than expected in the qualifying, Sebastian Vettel is hoping Ferrari can close up in Sunday's Chinese GP.
While Mercedes dominated qualifying at the Shanghai circuit, Vettel proved to be their nearest challenger.
The German, who won the previous race in Malaysia, was third quickest with a 1:36.687. He was also the only driver to get within a second of Lewis Hamilton's pole position time.
"First of all I am happy with today," he said in the post-qualifying press conference.
"We had a different strategy in Q3, going only once on a new set.
"These guys [Mercedes] were a bit quicker than we expected to be honest but I think we got everything right and P3 was our maximum today."
The 2009 Chinese GP winner is hoping that Ferrari can close the gap come Sunday's 56-lap race.
And having displayed great long distance pace in Friday's practices, getting ahead of one or both of the Mercedes drivers on the short run to the first corner could make the difference.
"For tomorrow we should be a bit closer, how close we will find out," Vettel added.
"I'm definitely looking forward to go racing and hopefully race them tomorrow.
"It's not very far to Turn 1 so I guess that's fairly straight forward but it's a long race.
"Tyres will be very important here and we'll try to do well and score points."