Ricciardo in favour of dropping practice at race weekends

Daniel Ricciardo (AUS), Red Bull Racing. RedBull Ring.

Daniel Ricciardo has said he's in favour of dropping all practice sessions over a Grand Prix weekend.

Eliminating Friday's two 90-minute practice sessions has been one of the proposals circulating in recent months as a way of cutting costs and allowing more races to be squeezed onto the Formula 1 calendar.

Ricciardo says he's in favour of the plan, but in his case it's because he prefers going racing rather than turning lap after lap in practice mode.

In his view, even the final practice session on Saturday mornings is superfluous. He believes that it would be better to get straight down to business with qualifying, and then fit in a second race in the afternoon before the Grand Prix itself on Sunday.

“I would prefer no practice," said the Red Bull driver. "Less laps of nonsense and more laps of meaningful business.

"I like racing. I don’t like practice so much," he continued. "If it meant we could race more through a year and do less practice, that sounds good to me.

"Qualify Saturday morning, race Saturday afternoon and race again Sunday," he proposed.

But for all his enthusiasm, Ricciardo also advised F1's new owners Liberty Media to be cautious about making such a huge change to the format of the sport.

"It is obviously not the F1 everyone is used to so you have to be careful with two races and all this," he warned.

And that caution was shared by Pierre Gasly, current driver at the junior Toro Rosso squad. He's also one of the names linked to take over from Ricciardo at the end of 2018 when the Australian moves to Renault.

“I am not a big fan of it," Gasly said when asked about the idea of a Saturday race. “One Grand Prix in a weekend and that’s the main event. You always wait for the race on Sunday.

"Since I was born, I've followed F1 and it has always been like this."

In his view, Formula 1 should concentrate on ensuring there's more action in the practice sessions. At the moment, teams have to restrict their running due to engine wear and the number of sets of tyres available to them.

"I would rather give us more tyres in practice so we can be out on track," he said. "The spectators will watch a bit more cars going around."

Whatever the decision, the Frenchman just wants the sport to be more competitive outside the top two or three teams.

“If they manage to get ten cars every weekend with the chance to fight for the podium I think that will be amazing," he said. "That is the main thing they should focus on.

"If they get twenty cars fighting for the podium that will be even better."

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