FIA race director Michael Masi says the return of a black and white flag warning for unsportsmanlike driver conduct should be considered Formula 1's equivalent of football's yellow card.
The black and white flag is available for use at all levels of motorsport, and the FIA International Sporting Code specifies that it "should be shown once only and is a warning to the driver concerned that he has been reported for unsportsmanlike behaviour".
Prior to last weekend's Belgian Grand Prix the signal was last used in F1 at the 2010 Malaysian GP, when Lewis Hamilton was warned for weaving in front of Vitaly Petrov.
Subsequently it fell out of favour, and former race director Charlie Whiting generally preferred to use radio messages to teams to convey warnings that an offence had been spotted by race control.
But Masi sees the flag as a useful tool, and specifically as a transparent public warning that will be seen by all.
After some discussions with teams it was formally reintroduced at Spa.
Drivers were told that it would be used if the timing loop in the runoff at Raidillon was triggered by them running wide three times, while also being available to address conduct such as moving under braking.
In the event drivers respected the runoff in that section throughout the weekend, and it was never deployed for that reason.
But the flag - actually displayed on a light panel at the start/finish line - was used to warn Pierre Gasly for moving in the braking area during the race.
"The black and white flag, bad sportsmanship flag, is something that hasn't been used prior to this since about 2010 apparently," said Masi when asked by the change in policy by Autosport.
"But one of the discussions that has been ongoing with the sporting directors is using it.
"So one of the reasons I haven't used it to date is trying to find out from as many of them and others as to why it stopped being used, and no one could come up with a valid reason.
"It is one of the flags that exists in the code, and every single sporting director and every single driver is supportive of the use of it.
"It is effectively the motorsport version of the yellow card."
Masi made it clear to the drivers at Spa that a repeated offence after a warning flag would go to the stewards, potentially triggering a penalty.
"That was highlighted at the drivers' meeting on Friday night, that it is your yellow card," he said.
"If we use the example of this weekend, if a black and white had been issued for exceeding track limits at Turn 4 [Radillon], for setting the loop off three times, and then you got another one for another incident, you wouldn't get a second black and white, you would be referred to the stewards as a breach."
The Raidillon run-off at Spa was considered a special case because of the high speeds at that point and the potential for an advantage to be gained down the following Kemmel straight.
Masi said the flag will remain in use for track limits at some venues, as well for as other offences such as that committed by Gasly.
Red Bull Racing driver Alex Albon welcomed the change of approach.
"I don't mind it too much, I think it's a lot better to do that than give penalties," he said.
"Even like the Vettel/Hamilton case in Canada, it would have been resolved a lot better if it was just a warning first.
"I think it's a good idea. We used it a lot in karting and it worked well, so I don't see why it wouldn't work in F1."
No action yet on slow qualifying laps
Masi does not share concerns from F1 drivers that the slow speeds they are doing before qualifying laps are unsafe, but said the FIA is monitoring the situation to make sure things do not get worse.
Last weekend world champion Lewis Hamilton said a "dangerous" situation was developing with drivers running slowly to try to get a tow and prepare their tyres.
Sebastian Vettel added that he thought matters had not been helped by the current generation of F1 tyres having a very narrow operating window.
"Obviously you are fighting for a tow and so on, but you are also fighting to get into the optimum window, which years ago was not that critical whereas now it is," said the Ferrari driver.
"You are fighting for the best spot on the track, which will hit the peak in Monza for finding the right tow because it does make the difference, but that has always been part of those type of tracks.
"But I feel if we had better tyres, we could play with probably a bit more speed and so on."
While Masi is aware of the practice taking place, and the concerns that drivers and their teams have, he thinks at the moment that there is no need to step in and take extra action.
"It is something that we have certainly discussed together with the sporting directors and at the current point, I think it is manageable," he said.
"Once it gets beyond that [we may look into it], but at the current point it is something we are continuously monitoring during the season and we will continue to look at it."
- Jonathan Noble