Daniel Ricciardo has recommended that the FIA should extend F1 practice sessions if heavily disrupted by red flags.
In FP2 ahead of this weekend's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Ferrari's Carlos Sainz was involved in what Ricciardo described as a “strange” accident, whilst Nico Hulkenberg also rear-ended his Haas against a barrier following a spin out of Turn 1 at the Yas Marina Circuit.
Overall, there were just 26 minutes of track action from a scheduled hour-long session.
For 10 F1 drivers, including Red Bull's Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton in his Mercedes, that was all they were involved in after giving up their seats in FP1 to allow rookies a run as mandated by the regulations.
Given the nature of the event at Abu Dhabi, FP2 is also the only representative session going into qualifying given the twilight-to-night conditions compared to the first and final practice runs that take place in daylight.
AlphaTauri driver Ricciardo, who finished 12th quickest, 0.658secs behind Ferrari's Charles Leclerc, feels consideration should be given when there are exceptional circumstances such as those that unfolded in FP2.
Asked whether time should be added when red flags severely curtail a session, Ricciardo replied: “Yes, it's been like that for a long time, but it would be nice to stop the clock.
“I did FP1 but a lot of drivers didn't, so they are staring down an FP2 with five laps or something.
“It would have been nice to maybe get a little bit of time back so maybe that's something we can discuss in the drivers' briefing and look for a few more rule changes.”
Sainz caused an initial 27-minute delay when he hit a bump on the exit of Turn 2 which threw him into a wall on the outside of the following right-hander.
The incident was not too dissimilar to Lando Norris' crash in last Sunday's Las Vegas Grand Prix when he also hit a bump in his McLaren, smashing into a wall, the force of which sent him hurtling along the following straight and into a barrier situated far down the run-off area.
Asked by Speedcafe why he felt Sainz's crash was “strange”, he replied: “It looked like they were probably running the car too low.
“It looks a bit like what happened with Lando in the last race, so I say strange because turns two and three we should be able to do it with our eyes closed. They're fast corners, but they're easy flat, so that's why I say strange.
“I look back at my Monaco crash last year in the swimming pool (complex). That's the only thing with these cars that you have to run them so low at the rear to get the downforce out of them, you end up going into a place that becomes pretty sketchy.
“Obviously, it (the car) gets the most sketchy at high speed when the car is fully loaded and low, so you can get incidents like that which obviously aren't nice to see. You can't do anything, you can't react.
“You saw Carlos was turning and then all of a sudden he's Mr. Passenger. Happy to hear he was all right.
“I don't want to go too hard on red-flag situations but maybe there are a few talking points in the drivers' briefing.”
Reflecting on his own session, Ricciardo described it as “a solid day”, with his AT04 running with a new floor as part of the team looking towards next season.
“There were definitely some positives in it,” said Ricciardo. “P1 was a solid session. We immediately felt some of the benefits from it.
“We made some changes for P2, just trying to exploit it and get the best all-round package from it. Maybe we overdid it in some areas, so we'll come back a little bit and keep trying to fine-tune. But all in all, I'd say a decent day.”