2016 Formula 1 debutant Jolyon Palmer feels the halo head protection system would be better suited in IndyCar rather than Formula 1, even though he knows driver safety remains important.
The Briton, who will race alongside Kevin Magnussen in the revived Renault Sport F1 team in 2016, admits to liking the tradition of open cockpits, which Palmer feels will make Formula 1 more like a sports car race, which he is against.
Palmer believes the halo system would be relevant in the Verizon IndyCar Series however, where they race at high speed and where the Briton feels there is a high probability of something happening that will bring danger to a driver.
“Overall it is important in F1,” said Palmer on Crash.net. “I like the open cockpits, the tradition of it. It is nice that the fans can see the drivers working, and the halo covers it up a lot more. It is much more like a sports car race, which is not good.
“When watch football and see the players, we have a helmet on but at least you can see the driver and their identity. So that (the halo) is not good. The safety improvement is obviously there, but in IndyCar it is more relevant because you have really high speeds and no run off, so all the debris has nowhere to go apart from into the crowd or onto the track, so of course there is a higher chance of something happening, which is where the halo will be effective.
“The tracks we have at the moment, the runoff is absolutely huge, so the debris does not really come back into the way of the cars, or Monaco where the speed is much lower and the debris does not really fly off to far anyway.”