US F1 Grand Prix: Second practice cancelled due to extreme weather

The FIA was forced to cancel the second practice session for Formula 1's United States Grand Prix at Austin due to extreme weather conditions

US F1 Grand Prix: Second practice cancelled due to extreme weather

Around 20 minutes prior to the start of the session the heavy rain forecast to hit the Austin area began to fall, turning into a deluge shortly after.

With nine minutes to go race control announced the "start of P2 will be delayed indefinitely, marshals unable to work due to the proximity of lightning".

As the rain became torrential and thunder boomed overhead on occasion, the drivers and team personnel became spectators in the garages.

The likes of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull's Daniil Kvyat amused themselves by taking over the cameras of the F1 photographers and snapping away.

As the rain persisted, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone, race director Charlie Whiting and deputy Herbie Blash were seen in conversation in race control, likely mulling over the session's prospects.

At 2.56pm local time, 56 minutes after the session should have started, the decision was taken to abandon running for the day, with the times from morning practice the only ones posted.

An FIA message read: "P2 is cancelled. No medical helicopter operations for the next two hours."

With the heavy rain forecast to continue through into Saturday, it raises doubts as to the possibility of practice three and qualifying taking place.

It is the first time an F1 practice session has been competely called off since the 2004 Japanese GP, when all the Saturday sessions were lost due to the Ma-On typhoon.

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