The FIA has decided to introduce a controversial head protection device called ‘Halo’ from 2018 F1 season. This was announced after the Strategy Group meeting concluded in Geneva on Wednesday.
Following a spate of incidents and near misses in the past few years, FIA has been keen on increasing the head protection provided to the drivers.
Halo was planned to be released in 2017 with most of the testing conducted by the end of 2016. But was delayed due to a need to explore another alternative.
Formula 1 teams tested the device either during the previous year or in their current Friday practice runs. Opinions on this new device have been inconclusive.
An alternative called ‘Shield’ was tested by Sebastian Vettel during the British GP practice. But the results weren’t pleasing as Vettel complained of dizziness due to trying it.
FIA confirmed that a few of Halo’s features will be enhanced further.
“Following the unanimous agreement of the Strategy Group, in July 2016, to introduce additional frontal protection for Formula 1 and the repeated support from the drivers, the FIA confirms the introduction of the Halo for 2018,” FIA stated.
“With the support of the teams, certain features of its design will be further enhanced.
“Having developed and evaluated a large number of devices over the past five years, it had become clear that the Halo presents the best overall safety performance.”
The Strategy Group also deliberated on 2020 power unit regulations. It envisioned that analysis would be completed over the summer before the group’s next meet.
FIA’s release mentioned, “A new approach to cost control was presented and received unanimous support.
“A dedicated Working Group made up of representation from the Commercial Right Holders, the FIA and the teams will be tasked to come up with innovative solutions aimed at ensuring the sport remains sustainable in the coming years.”
Renault, Toro Rosso, Sauber and Haas formally joined the Strategy Group as members. This meet saw all the 10 teams being part of the deliberations for the first time