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Formula 1 to implement Halo in 2018 - Photo: LAT

Formula 1 to implement Halo in 2018 – Photo: LAT

After testing the Shield cockpit protection system at the British Grand Prix last weekend, the FIA have announced that the Halo cockpit protection system is to be introduced for the 2018 Formula 1 season.

The Halo system, designed the reduce the risk of debris hitting drivers heads, was extensively tested by several F1 teams last year before the project was shelved.

It was thought that the Shield solution would offer a more visually appealing option, but feedback from Sebastian Vettel suggested several issues with the design.

“The forward vision is not very good. I think it’s because of the curvature, you get quite a bit of distortion.” Vettel said after the test.

“There was a lot of downwash down the straight, coming off the back of my helmet and pushing my head forward.

“We had a run planned with it, but I didn’t like it, so we took it off.”

The Halo system tested by Mercedes during practice in Singapore - Photo: LAT

The Halo system tested by Mercedes during practice in Singapore – Photo: LAT

The Halo system will now resume testing with certain features of its design to be further enhanced prior to its introduction in 2018.

The announcement follows a meeting of the Formula One Strategy Group, who met to discuss the several items including 2021 power units, cost control, and improving the F1 show for fans.

Full statement from the FIA:

Today the Formula One Strategy Group met to discuss a number of issues regarding the FIA Formula One World Championship. For the first time, all teams competing in the FIA Formula One World Championship were present at the meeting with observers from Renault Sport Formula One Team, Scuderia Toro Rosso, Sauber F1 Team and Haas F1 Team in attendance.

Key topics discussed at the meeting included:

Frontal cockpit protection

Following the unanimous agreement of the Strategy Group, in July 2016, to introduce additional frontal protection for Formula One and the repeated support from the drivers, the FIA confirms the introduction of the Halo for 2018. 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.

2021 Power Unit

An update was given to all attendees regarding the two recent extraordinary meetings held in Paris involving significant representation from the bulk of global motor sport power unit manufacturers.

Further analysis will be completed over the summer which will be reviewed at the next meeting of the Strategy Group in September.

Cost control

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.

Improving the show

A number of sporting measures aimed at improving the show were also debated and specific studies will be carried out to assess these.

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