Weather: wet track with heavy rain showers. Air: 16-18C, Track: 17-21C
Silverstone (GB). After a flawless drive and numerous good overtaking manoeuvres Nick Heidfeld took second place for the BMW Sauber F1 Team in what was a wet and fairly chaotic British Grand Prix. This was his third runner-up spot of the season, and the team's seventh podium. While everything, including the right tyre choice at each pit stop, paid off for Heidfeld, his team mate Robert Kubica slid off the slippery track after his second pit stop.
Nick Heidfeld: 2nd
BMW Sauber F1.08-07 / BMW P86/8
Fastest Lap: 1:32.719 min on lap 21 (2nd fastest overall)
"It was a good race. I am happy with second place because today it was the best I could achieve. Qualifying went well and in the race we did everything right. Obviously it was crucial to make the right tyre decisions. At the first stop we were wondering if we should stay with the used set of inters, but luckily we then decided on new tyres. We were expecting a small shower, but when I drove down Hanger Straight and saw a black wall in front of me I thought I should expect more than that! The most difficult moments in the race were when cars were overtaking me who had been lapped, but were just on better tyres for the conditions at that time. There was so much water and I couldn't see where it was lying. Once before Abbey I almost spun, but just managed to keep the car on the track."
Robert Kubica: DNF
BMW Sauber F1.08-03 / BMW P86/8
Fastest Lap: 1:33.539 min on lap 22 (12th fastest overall)
"I was already aquaplaning for many laps and unfortunately in a straight line I just lost the car completely and went off. Here in Silverstone it was a crazy race in difficult conditions. Everything was running pretty well as I was having quite a good race and gaining positions. But when it rained and there was a lot of water on the track I was just struggling. I couldn't keep the car in a straight line, was losing power, the rear wheels were losing contact with the tarmac and that was it."
Mario Theissen (BMW Motorsport Director):
"It was a very dramatic race which was dictated by the weather conditions. In some periods of the race the lap times varied by as much as ten seconds depending on the tyre choice. With Nick our strategy worked out perfectly. He performed very strongly and carried out some spectacular overtaking manoeuvres. After things have not gone his way recently, I am very happy for him he climbed from fifth on the grid to second with a good mixture of intelligent racing and fighting spirit. For him it is the third second place so far this year, and for our team the seventh podium. Robert was doing well, having climbed up to third, but then went off during a rain shower. Compliments to him as well as it was a strong team performance under these difficult conditions."
Willy Rampf (Technical Director):
"That was a tyre lottery, as there was a permanent question over which ones we should use. The critical period was when the drivers were fighting very hard to keep the cars on track after the heavy rain. Nick managed to do this very well. Unfortunately Robert was aquaplaning and went off. Nick deserved his place on the podium as he drove a very smart race. Congratulations on a great performance and compliments to the pit stop crew, because we made the tyre choice decisions at very short notice."
Test in Hockenheim: 8th and 9th July Heidfeld, 10th July Kubica
-credit: bmw sauber