IndyCar Advanced Frontal Protection safety device mandated from Indianapolis 500 onwards
IndyCar have announced an additional cockpit protection device which will be run by all drivers starting from the 2019 Indianapolis 500.
As reported on Indycar.com, the Advanced Frontal Protection (AFP) feature is a titanium piece which is designed to deflect debris away from the driver. Centrally positioned on the chassis, just in front of the cockpit, it resembles the foremost fixing point of the halo seen in Formula 1.
Following Robert Wickens’ harrowing crash at Pocono last year, the spotlight remains on IndyCar to continue to implement safety improvements.
An F1-style halo has been considered for the series but as well as being difficult to integrate with the current DW12 chassis, there are thought to be visibility issues on oval circuits.
A windscreen device, developed in collaboration with PPG Aerospace, has received favourable reviews from drivers but it is reported that there are still significant testing issues that need to be overcome in the laboratory before it can be signed off for race use.
The AFP device has been thoroughly tested by chassis manufacturer Dallara since 2012, and advances in technology have now made it a practical option, with the piece able to withstand the same forces as the roll hoop on top of the car.
“Safety is a never-ending pursuit, and this is INDYCAR’s latest step in the evolution,” INDYCAR President Jay Frye said. “There are more details to come about the phases to follow.”