Nick Heidfeld set the pace for BMW Sauber on the second day of Formula One testing at Monza, posting the quickest time of the week in the process.
The German set a fastest lap of 1min 22.621secs from his 89 laps on day two of the three day test as he concentrated on set-up work for the upcoming Italian Grand Prix, trying out a series of different aerodynamic solutions on the car in a low downforce configuration. Heidfeld will hand the car over to team-mate Robert Kubica for the final day of running.
Heidfeld was followed on the timesheets by Williams' Nico Rosberg, who was one of the busiest drivers on track as he completed 100 laps on his second day of running. Continuing to work on set-up for the Italian race, he completed his two days of testing without any mechanical issues and ended the day just over two-tenths of a second behind Heidfeld's benchmark time. Heikki Kovalainen ran through a similar programme focusing on the Monza race and was third quickest for McLaren.
Toro Rosso were one of two teams to give both drivers time on track, with Sebastian Vettel running during the morning and setting the fourth quickest time. The young German focused on car set-up for Monza and did comparison runs on the two compounds of Bridgestone tyres that will be available for the weekend and his best lap was only a fraction of a second better than day one pace-setter Felipe Massa who slotted into fifth for Ferrari.
He continued to work on the Monza aerodynamic package on the F2008 and on set-up and was able to get another 86 laps under his belt.
"We are putting a lot of effort into finding the right settings on the car for this track," he said. "On top of that, we are obviously paying careful attention to reliability and the way the car behaves over the Monza kerbs, an aspect of the package that saw us in difficulty last year. I think we are working well, even if we will only have the first real confirmation of this after qualifying for the Italian Grand Prix."
Fernando Alonso took over from team-mate Nelson Piquet at Renault and was sixth quickest ahead of Adrian Sutil, who was an encouraging seventh for Force India. He continued the work carried out by Tonio Liuzzi on day one as he evaluated set-ups on the VJM01, while the team also took the chance to try out a number of development parts on the rear suspension of the car.
“Today was quite a good day,” he said. “I felt comfortable in the car and we could do a lot of laps and found some items that will help us move forward and prepare for the race here. We had some work to do to find a good set-up that works over the kerbs and in the slow corners without losing time on braking or on the straights, and also trying to get a good setup with the inertia dampers. We made some good steps forward that will also help us at next week's Belgian Grand Prix, so I am happy and feel quite prepared for these coming races.”
Mark Webber rounded out the top eight for Red Bull as he completed his programme for the weekend at the wheel of the RB4. The Australian spent his morning working on the aerodynamics of the car before switching his focus to set-up during the afternoon as he completed a trouble free day and took the Renault engine in his car to its maximum permissible mileage.