Q and A: Nick Heidfeld

Nick HeidfeldNick Heidfeld talks to reporters after a productive test for BMW Sauber at Silverstone.

The German, who is under increasing pressure to close the gap to team-mate Robert Kubica and overcome problems with heating up his Bridgestone tyres in qualifying, said he was confident that the team have resolved some of the handling problems that plagued their below par performance in Magny-Cours.

How was the testing this week, are you happy with progress?

Yeah good. I finished early not because of any problems, but with the kilometre limitations we have completed 93 laps as planned. Unfortunately it was a bit windy but that was the same yesterday which makes it a bit difficult to test properly. But still we managed to do everything that we planned.

Are you happy you’ve made some progress since France?

I think so, but as Robert already said it looks like for Magny-Cours there were one or two wrong choices we made. Unfortunately because Magny-Cours lap times are always close together and although not knowing the fuel levels of the others, here it looks more normal again. It looks unfortunately right now that McLaren and Ferrari are quicker but we should be third or fourth again we are looking not bad.

Have you had a chance to work a bit more at the tyre warming issue that you’ve been having? Because obviously you were closer to Robert in qualifying in Magny-Cours.

Yeah not much today I did some setup work but no so much focussing on the tyre heat up. I hope as you say that it will at least continue like in Magny-Cours when I was 0.060 seconds slower than Robert in Q2 which was acceptable, of course not my target, but at least better than the last couple of races. And we’re still looking into it.

In terms of setup at the next weekend: have you got it where you want to be, do you know where you the baseline is for the weekend there?

Yeah I think we’ve done all the baselines. You know from the years of experience that you cannot set the car up perfectly today and the next week it will be different anyway, but we have an idea.

Are you expecting to start here for the rest of the season: just stay ahead of the rest and catching Ferrari and McLaren is going to be almost impossible?

I think that on most of the circuits Ferrari will be strongest. If McLaren or ourselves does not make any good step, taking out Monza which is a different circuit, a bit like Canada, where we have been strong. But on the more normal tracks I expect Ferrari to be the strongest.