Nick Heidfeld will roll out of the pit-lane for the final free practice session for the French Grand Prix on Saturday morning, after shrugging off an injury scare that his BMW Sauber team thought may rule him out of the Magny-Cours weekend.

The German aroused fears that he might have to withdraw from the eighth race of the season when he cut short practice on Friday complaining of a recurrence of the back problem he had suffered in F1 testing at Silverstone last week. He had been seventh fastest in the first session of the weekend, but withdrew in the early part of the afternoon complaining of pain, and was sent to the medical centre for examination.

"The practice sessions have been okay so far and I like driving on this circuit, but I stopped early because I wanted to save my back," Heidfeld commented at the time, "Last week at the Silverstone test, I had some problems, and I can still feel it. As a precaution, I want to have it checked today."

The problem was later diagnosed as severe cramp and, after treatment, Heidfeld was cleared to resume his weekend, dashing the hopes of substitute Sebastian Vettel, who had scored a point on debut after replacing the injured Robert Kubica at Indianapolis a fortnight ago.

"Nick saw the doctor, he got treatment, and he will drive," a BMW team spokesman confirmed to reporters.

 

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