BMW-Sauber head into qualifying for the final grand prix of the 2007 season in Brazil brimful of confidence after Robert Kubica spent much of the second practice session atop the timesheets.

Though the Pole would ultimately be demoted to sixth - eight tenths of a second shy of the pace - as he sat out the closing minutes, he had nevertheless made a strong impression on only his second visit to the demanding Interlagos circuit.

"In the morning we didn't run because of the weather," the 22-year-old explained. "Our predictions said there would be no rain, and for the afternoon we were hoping the track would dry out. That is what it did and at the end it was nearly completely dry.

"We did quite a lot of tyre evaluation as they are pretty soft and there is a lot of graining, and it is very difficult to do anything against the graining. They have done a very good job on re-surfacing the track though. There are no bumps at all, and the track is very smooth. Normally when you put new tarmac down the bumps stay, but that is not the case here. It has made it easier, as the bumps were upsetting the balance of the car, but as before it is a nice track to drive on."

Team-mate Nick Heidfeld similarly elected not to venture out during the wet morning practice, contenting himself with 44 laps in the afternoon. Like Kubica, the German took a turn at the top of the timing screens, and though he eventually wound up tenth he remained optimistic of a good result at the scene of his maiden podium finish in the top flight more than six years ago.

"In the afternoon I did many laps," he affirmed, "and the car felt pretty good. We did a lot of comparisons and now have a good amount of information about the tyres. The softer compound tends to grain, but the new tarmac is a clear improvement."

"Because we don't expect rain on Saturday or Sunday, we didn't do any running in the morning as it didn't make any sense to send the cars out," added team technical director Willy Rampf. "In the second session we did the tyre evaluation with both cars.

"Now we will look into the data to make our tyre choice for qualifying and the race. Because of the changing track conditions the lap times were improving all the time, and this makes the data comparison very interesting. We had no technical problems."



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