Kevin Magnussen says Halo is “Wrong for Formula 1”


Kevin Magnussen drives his Haa F1 car on wet tyres
Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

Haas F1 Team‘s Kevin Magnussen has laid fresh criticism on the Halo, calling it “ugly“, “annoying“, and “wrong for Formula 1“.

Last week was the first time many teams and drivers were able to assess how racing will be with the Halo and, whilst some drivers have said it doesn’t affect them – Fernando Alonso told ESPN it’s “not a problem for driving“, while current World Champion Lewis Hamilton said “your mind learns to work around it” – it’s the appearance that Magnussen takes issue with.

It’s very annoying. Ugly. Difficult to get into the car, difficult to get out of the car, difficult to get the steering wheel on and off, just awkward and annoying.

Once you get into the corner it’s fine because you look to the sides and left and right of the pillar in the middle so it’s not a problem visually to see the corner.

But it distracts your eye obviously when you change direction like chicanes and you have to move your vision across the pillar.

It’s a little bit distracting but it isn’t any concern as such.

Testing is currently taking place at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya – a relatively flat track – without issue, but Magnussen believes issues may arise when drivers reach circuits with larger elevation changes like the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps and Austin.

If you’re chasing someone in Eau Rouge you won’t be able to see if he makes a mistake at the top and spins if you’re down the middle part.

You won’t know if he’s in the wall or not.

I guess the same at Austin Turn 1 where there’s big elevation, but we’ll see.

Though it has been discussed for many years leading up to its implementation, cockpit protection really started to gain traction following two high-profile motorsport fatalities that could have been prevented by it.

2014 saw Jules Bianchi’s ultimately fatal accident, while less than one year later in 2015 Justin Wilson suffered a fatal injury while racing in IndyCar. The American series is also trialling cockpit protection, though they’re looking at a system much closer to Red Bull‘s Aeroscreen. This, too, is too much for Magnussen, who believes Formula 1 should have stayed with an open cockpit.

It looks a lot nicer but I’m not even really a fan of that.

It’s better than our halo but I just don’t think there should be anything.

In my opinion, Formula 1 is an open car and shouldn’t be closed. I think it’s wrong for Formula 1.
Haas F1 Team‘s Kevin Magnussen has laid fresh criticism on the Halo, calling it “ugly“, “annoying“, and “wrong for Formula 1“.

Last week was the first time many teams and drivers were able to assess how racing will be with the Halo and, whilst some drivers have said it doesn’t affect them – Fernando Alonso told ESPN it’s “not a problem for driving“, while current World Champion Lewis Hamilton said “your mind learns to work around it” – it’s the appearance that Magnussen takes issue with.

It’s very annoying. Ugly. Difficult to get into the car, difficult to get out of the car, difficult to get the steering wheel on and off, just awkward and annoying.

Once you get into the corner it’s fine because you look to the sides and left and right of the pillar in the middle so it’s not a problem visually to see the corner.

But it distracts your eye obviously when you change direction like chicanes and you have to move your vision across the pillar.

It’s a little bit distracting but it isn’t any concern as such.

Testing is currently taking place at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya – a relatively flat track – without issue, but Magnussen believes issues may arise when drivers reach circuits with larger elevation changes like the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps and Austin.

If you’re chasing someone in Eau Rouge you won’t be able to see if he makes a mistake at the top and spins if you’re down the middle part.

You won’t know if he’s in the wall or not.

I guess the same at Austin Turn 1 where there’s big elevation, but we’ll see.

Though it has been discussed for many years leading up to its implementation, cockpit protection really started to gain traction following two high-profile motorsport fatalities that could have been prevented by it.

2014 saw Jules Bianchi’s ultimately fatal accident, while less than one year later in 2015 Justin Wilson suffered a fatal injury while racing in IndyCar. The American series is also trialling cockpit protection, though they’re looking at a system much closer to Red Bull‘s Aeroscreen. This, too, is too much for Magnussen, who believes Formula 1 should have stayed with an open cockpit.

It looks a lot nicer but I’m not even really a fan of that. It’s better than our halo but I just don’t think there should be anything.

In my opinion, Formula 1 is an open car and shouldn’t be closed. I think it’s wrong for Formula 1.