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skysports.com

The world governing body of Formula One, FIA, has come out with an alternative head protection device for its drivers at the Shanghai Grand Prix.

There are reports it might be made mandatory from next year onwards. “We got to see this intermediate option, called the Shield, something between the Halo and no protection… closer to the Aeroscreen Red Bull tried,” revealed Marcus Ericsson, the CEO of FIA.

It is in the trial process and drivers are being asked to give their opinion on the device.

It has undergone major improvements in its design and features. The revised design is said to be flatter and better integrated into the chassis, thus more aesthetically pleasing whilst still providing visibility and improved cockpit safety.

The drivers, however, remained unconvinced with some voicing their dissatisfaction about the product.
“My feedback hasn’t changed, I’m against Shield, Aeroscreen or Halo. I think Formula 1 is back to where it should be, back to really cool cars, aggressive cars and I don’t want to put any stuff on that could destroy what we’ve just built,” said Romain Grosjean.

However, the device has found some fans in Sebastian Vettel and retired driver Nico Rosberg, who both maintain that the device is a major step towards ensuring driver safety.

Another driver has also voiced his approval of the device. “My opinion is I wouldn’t mind not having anything,” said Kevin Magnussen. “I am happy as it is now.”

Ever since Liberty Media has taken over the sport, it has introduced a series of changes. While some of them have been met by the approval of all alike including the teams and the fans, the administration has been finding it hard to garner support for others.

The CEO would have to ensure the satisfaction of all sides before making such rules mandatory.

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