The Australian had set the pace in the early minutes of FP2, but his session came to a premature end when he ran wide and skidded through the gravel exiting the final turn, bringing out the red flags while the marshals safely recovered his car.
"I made a mistake," Ricciardo told reporters of the crash which ripped the left-front tyre off his RB10. "I did my first quick lap and everyone is cooling after that, producing fast lap, slow lap and then fast again.
"On the slow lap there was a yellow flag, so I went extra slow so that once I started my quick lap the yellow flag would have cleared and I would have been able to push.
"The tyres probably cooled too much - out of the last chicane I got on the power, had a few moments and just couldn't catch it."
Despite only completing three laps - and no laps at all on the medium compound tyre - Ricciardo insisted the accident will not disrupt his chances for Sunday's race.
"It looks like it probably won't hurt me too much," he said. "I missed time on the option [tyre] but it seemed pretty straightforward. Even though I only did one [flying] lap we made some changes between P1 and P2 and it definitely felt better. It would have been nice to stay out but I think we're looking alright."
Ricciardo ended the session in 10th, while his team mate Sebastian Vettel - a four-time winner at Suzuka - finished in fifth.