FIA outlines plans for next version of Halo
Thursday, 15 February 2018
By Chris Medland / Image by Mauger/LAT
The FIA wants to reduce the thickness of the Halo and improve its aesthetics when developing the next version of the cockpit protection device.
Following tests of a number of potential solutions – including a shield approach that was seen at Silverstone last year – the FIA only finalized the Halo in late July 2017, leaving seven months before it would be running in pre-season. With a standard Halo being approved and teams only able to add fairings for aerodynamic purposes, the FIA safety delegate Laurent Mekies has revealed where the governing body aims on improving the device in future.
"We have two main objectives," Mekies told RACER. "One is the central strut, to see if we can have a reduction in thickness for visibility purposes. And secondly a better integration in the car, i.e. better aesthetics ultimately. So that's what we would like to see in stage two."
With such a new addition to single seaters requiring a significant amount of work, Mekies admits the FIA is only now able to start focusing on changes it wants to make, having implemented the Halo in both Formula 1 and Formula 2.
"So the reality is that the last few months we have been trying to switch from a decision-making point to making it happen. So we had to get Halo standards published, get Halo suppliers certified, get Halo suppliers to deliver certified parts, which in the end was an added complexity because not only did we do it for F1 but we did it for F1, F2 and Formula E pretty much in the same timeline.
"Now we are a few months later and the situation is quite good. Halo has been delivered, we have three suppliers now homologated, so we are now going to be able to put a bit more emphasis on the research on stage two."
It was recently confirmed that the FIA is also working closely with IndyCar on development of the windscreen currently being tested in order to understand if it would be suitable for F1 in future.
Posted 16 February 2018 - 13:31
Posted 16 February 2018 - 13:33
Although no fan of the overtaking aid, Ross Brawn says 'DRS' is staying in formula one for now.
Recently, Liberty Media bought defunct F1 team Manor's last wind tunnel model and began working on how overtaking chances can be improved for the future.
Brawn, F1's sporting boss, said: "In the short term we will continue to work with DRS.
"My hope is that the cars will develop to the point that we don't need it anymore, but in the near future that will not happen," he told Business Life.
Brawn said that is because Liberty is determined to make sure any changes that are made are done right.
"Before we can improve the racing, we need to thoroughly understand what's going on. We can follow our gut instinct, but that's not good enough when you think about how incredibly complicated these cars are," he said.
Some believe the problem worsened in 2017 as the cars got considerably faster, and Brawn admits that F1 might need to take a step back with speed in the future.
"Speed plays an important role and the fans want to see the fastest cars," he said.
"But if we see a way to make the racing better, then I would be willing to sacrifice some speed."
Brawn also said Liberty is considering dealing with the issue of having too many promoters wanting a race by introducing a kind of "league table".
He explained that it would involve a "waiting list of top-class circuits and promoters that are waiting to get into formula one".
"If there's any race that is not working well, you relegate that and put a strong race in."