Romain Grosjean found it “disappointing” to damage the front wing on his Haas Formula 1 car after hitting a groundhog during second practice for the Canadian Grand Prix on Friday, with the team already running low on spares.

Grosjean reported over the radio that he thought he had hit an animal, with the team finding his car’s front wing and nose had been severely damaged upon his return to the pits.

A groundhog had been picked up by TV cameras on the side of the track by the back straight on a number of occasions through FP2, and Grosjean was surprised efforts weren’t made to remove it.

“It was a big impact, it was quite a big animal. It’s a bit disappointing because they show it on TV at the beginning of the session before Turn 13 and it’s exactly where I hit it, so I am surprised they didn’t remove it,” Grosjean said.

“It’s of course a shame for the animal and it’s a shame for our front wing as well. We’re quite limited in spare parts and losing a front wing like this is a bit disappointing. 

“It felt like a big impact and I mean if it’s happening in the race, your race is kinda over because the damage on the car is big. 

“It was a bit strange that it was filmed so it was aware it was here and it wasn’t removed.”

The incident follows Haas chief Gunther Steiner’s call to both Grosjean and teammate Kevin Magnussen earlier this week to avoid damaging their cars as the team is short on spares. However, Grosjean said the team does have a spare front wing.

Groundhog-related incidents aside, Grosjean was able to finish the session seventh-fastest at the head of the midfield, and was pleased with how his day went.

“I think the pace was good. Seventh is where we want to be, best of the rest so we have achieved that,” Grosjean said.

“The car felt good. The upgrade is very nice. Got some good front end there which I am happy with, more downforce in general so it’s just about getting the tyres to work.

“It’s not as easy as you always want but I think we are doing OK and a few things we can improve for tomorrow but generally I was quite pleased with the car.”