Thursday, Apr 25 11:14am
AUTHOR: Simon Chapman

Cockpit protection device debuts at Indianapolis 500 test

The NTT IndyCar Series has debuted the all-new ‘Advanced Frontal Protection’ device at this week’s Indianapolis 500 test.


The debris deflector is being used as an interim solution to cockpit protection while work continues to develop a more comprehensive device.


Organisers of the IndyCar Series have previously tested a windscreen on the Dallara IR-18, however, issues with visibility and strength have proven to be a significant hurdle to overcome.


The small device is made of titanium, weighs just 1.27 kilograms and is bolted to the centre of the chassis just in front of the cockpit. The device is mandatory for all competitors that’ll compete in the 103rd running of the race.




Test have been carried out in simulators with New Zealand driver Scott Dixon one of those to test the device to evaluate any visual impairments.


“If a piece (of debris) comes toward the front of the nose, toward the driver,” IndyCar Series President Jaye Frye said.


“This will deflect the debris away from the driver. It’s something now that’s in front of them that wasn’t there before.


“We’re excited to hear what they say. It’s something they’ll have to get used to, but that’s part of what today is about. They know why we’re doing it. We’re doing it to help them.”


Frye confirmed that more cockpit safety developments are expected to be announced in May.


“This will be Phase 1 of our solution,” he said. “Sometime in May, we’ll announce what we’re doing next. This is Phase 1, it’ll do X. The other things we’re working on will be Y and Z in the process.”