BMW Sauber can come away from the 2007 season safe in the knowledge that they qualified both of their cars in the top ten for each race this year after Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica claimed sixth and seventh on the grid in Brazil.

Although a grid penalty in Belgium for Kubica meant they won't have started each race inside the top ten, the team have nonetheless signified their rise to prominence this year with an otherwise marvellous qualifying record that only McLaren can match.

Even then, two tenth places for McLaren actually mean BMW were to only team this year to qualify in single figures each time.

There were times in today's qualifying session though that suggested this wouldn't be the case after Heidfeld in particular only scraped through to the shootout with the tenth fastest time in Q2.

Nonetheless, while the German struggled with his set-up early on, changes to the track in the shootout managed to extract some speed out of his package, leaving him on the third row.

"I'm extremely happy. My penultimate lap wasn't bad and the final one was simply great. In qualifying two I was close to missing the top ten, and this was because I had a big slide and almost spun in turn 6.

"Right up to the last session of qualifying I had the impression this time we might have gone in the wrong direction with the car's set-up. It would have been an exception because normally we are very good in this. In the end the car felt better again and I think the track conditions also helped."

Kubica on the other hand was disappointed with seventh having been consistently the 'best of the rest' in the first two qualifying sessions. However, the Pole claims his best lap was ruined by Fernando Alonso on his out-lap.

"It could have been better, but unfortunately on the last lap I had Fernando Alonso in front of me. He let me by, but I had to take a different line which meant my tyres picked up dirt. In the last corner I was quicker but when braking I locked the front wheel, went straight and lost a lot of time. The race will certainly be hard for the tyre."



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