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IndyCar Could See Screen Next Year But No Halo: Motor Racing

IndyCar Could See Screen Next Year But No Halo: Motor Racing
According to chief executive of the Indycar series - Mark Miles, a screen could yet be introduced some time next season even though Indycar has ruled out using a head protection device similar to Formula One’s halo.
“It could be next year. It’s not going to be in March but it could be during the season,” he told reporters at the weekend’s U.S. Grand Prix in Austin, Texas -- a double-header with Sunday’s Mexican F1 race.
without any device in place, Indianapolis Motor Speedway in July was the place where the 2018 Indy car was presented for the public to view. However, a prototype screen could be tested on track before the end of the year as it is being developed.
“We think greater head protection is important. We’re working on it. It won’t be a halo, it will be some form of a windscreen,” said Miles.
”We’re making real progress on something that won’t really alter the look of our car. Drivers will be able to see through it, over it.
“Forget what each of us may think about it aesthetically or otherwise, it’s pretty clear that since we’re on ovals and they’re banked, the driver couldn’t see up through it (the halo). You’ve got to be able to see up,” added Miles.
After also testing transparent shield concepts, halo cockpit protection system from next season is all set to by introduced by Formula One. But Formula One does not race on oval circuits unlike IndyCar.
Criticized by some fans and drivers for its looks, the ‘halo’ is fixed at three points including a central pillar in front of the driver that supports a protective loop above his head.
While Formula Two will make use of the ‘halo’ from next year, later dates have been fixed for introduction of the same for other FIA-sanctioned junior series.
following the deaths in 2015 of British Indy Car driver Justin Wilson and French Formula One driver Jules Bianchi, there has been a push worldwide for installing and ensuring increased head protection as the issue has gathered urgency in areas apart from the Formula One racing circuit.
While Bianchi suffered severe head injuries in the 2014 Japanese Grand Prix when his car hit a recovery tractor, Wilson died after being hit on the head by debris from another car while competing at Pennsylvania’s Pocono Raceway.
IndyCar’s showcase race is the Indianapolis 500 in May.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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