With two minutes remaining Vitaly Petrov set the fourth fastest time in his Renault but moments later suffered a problem and was left with no option but to stop on the race track on the run down to turn four.
His teammate, Nick Heidfeld, had just taken to the track for his one and only run of the session but the red flag cost the German a set of fresh option tyres before setting the 16th fastest time when the session resumed. Heidfeld gambled on being able to make it through to Q3 but traffic made it exceptionally difficult for Heidfeld to set a top ten time.
Heidfeld was not alone with losing a set of option tyres with Michael Schumacher also forced to abandon his effort. The seven times champion ended Q2 with the 14th fastest time after losing the rear end into the hairpin at the end of the straight on his final lap.
Toro Rosso had an solid session with Sebastian Buemi and Jamie Alguersuari both showing impressive pace to set the seventh and eighth fastest times respectively with both drivers not taking to the track for the final minutes.
The red flag made it exceptionally difficult for drivers to find room on the circuit and will have left a lot of drivers with ready made excuses for their failure to maximise the performace of their cars.