Ricciardo, Hamilton give standing restarts a cautious thumbs up
Daniel Ricciardo says he expects fans will appreciate the planned introduction of 'more exciting' standing restarts following a safety car period even if he admits he is less keen on the idea as a racer.
Over the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend, teams agreed in principle to introduce standing starts after a safety car period – instead of the rolling restarts that have always been applied –, a move intended to spice up the mid-race competition.
Though Ricciardo admits it will potentially find controversy amongst drivers if it changes the outcome of races in the closing stages, he admits it will potentially encourage fans to continue watching until the end and provide spectacle.
“It's terrible if you've got a 40s lead but great if you're in second place,” the Red Bull driver said. “So, we'll see. I think it will be... obviously it creates more variability again so if the race is looking a little bit stationary then that could definitely spice it up. There's pros and cons. I think for fans it's going to be more exciting.
Lewis Hamilton meanwhile says it will be an 'interesting' addition to a race, but points out there will be a potentially major disadvantage for cars on one side of the track due to the 'marbles' from tyres accumulating off the racing line.
With this in mind, the 2016 F1 runner-up says he hopes the grid will be cleaned for the restarts.
“It shouldn't be much different to now, I should imagine. They should clean it up for the start so generally not marbles there, but I guess for the restart maybe. That would be interesting.”