Daniel Ricciardo has slammed the Formula 1 stewards' decision to hand him a three-place grid penalty for Sunday's Australian Grand Prix after being deemed to have failed to slow enough for a red flag during practice, calling it "shithouse".

Home favourite Ricciardo was handed the sanction after he was adjudged to have failed to slow down enough for a red flag midway through FP2 on Friday that was called for a loose wire on the main pit straight.

The red flag was called through Ricciardo's qualifying simulation lap, and while the stewards did acknowledge he made an effort to slow down by 175 km/h and was only "slightly below the minimum time" required to get back to the pits, it did not stop them from handing the Red Bull driver a three-place grid penalty.

Speaking to Australia's Channel 10, Ricciardo said he was "pissed" about the decision that has harmed his hopes of becoming the first home driver to finish on the podium at the Australian Grand Prix in the F1 era.

"Is it worth a grid penalty?” Ricciardo asked. "I think common sense should have prevailed. It was a cable on the track. I didn't pass the incident.

"I think it’s shithouse."

As well as the three-place grid drop, Ricciardo also picked up his first two penalty points on his FIA Super License for the 12-month period.

Qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix takes place at 5 p.m. local time in Melbourne (6 a.m. UK), with rain threatening to impact the running through the day.

"I don’t think it will hurt. We always enjoy some wet weather," Ricciardo said following practice on Friday.

"It kind of evens everything out. Today in the dry we did not look too bad, which is good. I think the wet will gives us potentially a bit more of a chance.

"The last wet qualifying we had here was 2014 and that was not too bad. Hopefully we can try and do that again."

 

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