Daniel Ricciardo has a solution for the FIA

Daniel Ricciardo finished 11th at the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix.

McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo has suggested flexible start times to avoid the delays seen in Singapore and Japan.

The race at the Marina Bay Street Circuit was delayed by an hour while race control was waiting for a gap in the weather, but the track had dried so much that Intermediates sufficed.

The organisers needed to go through the pre-race festivities, such as the national anthem, but because the scheduled start time had changed, the three-hour race clock was also pushed back.

That therefore had no bearing on the race finishing early due to reaching its two-hour limit after lights out.

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In Japan, the drivers were greeted by torrential rain again when they arrived at the racetrack, but a harsh weather front had come in for the start of the race, leading to a heavy crash for Carlos Sainz.

There were more delays after that, and because both the three-hour and the two-hour clock had started, only 28 laps of running were completed in total.

For the most part, the fans were deprived of a full race distance, which was a real shame considering the exciting racing on display throughout the afternoon’s action.

Max Verstappen won for Red Bull, clinching his second championship in the process, while Ricciardo started and finished 11th behind team-mate Lando Norris.

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The Australian suggested that moving the race forward on the fly would be a lot more gratifying for the fans, who pay good money to watch the events.

“We want to race, where I wish we could do better is… I know it’s easy saying it now, but we knew this rain was going to come. It’s like 2014,” explained Ricciardo in conversation with Autosport.

“Even if you bring it forward an hour, maybe we gain 20 laps at the beginning and you can still make a race of it.

“That’s where again, let’s try and learn something from this. I know there’s TV and everything, there’s a big part of it.

“Ultimately, we want to have a race.”

The 33-year-old was a little concerned racing with such poor visibility at the start, but he enjoyed his afternoon in Suzuka.

“Part of me was scared, part of me enjoyed it, it was nice to gain a few spots,” added Ricciardo.

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“As soon as we got into Turn One, I was like ‘ah wow, there’s too much water’. The visibility was so bad, I feel like the onboard cameras did it justice.

“But then I was happy to get the race going again, I didn’t think it would.”

Ricciardo has four races remaining as a McLaren driver, before almost certainly now taking a year away from Formula 1 in 2023.