Is IndyCar leaving the door open for a Halo?

The Halo offers superior driver protection
The Halo offers superior driver protection

Readers of AR1.com know that we have suggested IndyCar abandon the windscreen idea to protect drivers on all but the high banked oval tracks.

There is no visibility issues with the Halo on all the street and road courses, as well as the low banked oval tracks like Indy.

The Halo affords the drivers far more head protect, especially if the car gets up into the catch fence and hits one of the rigid vertical poles.

The Windscreen? Near zero protection in such a scenario and in many other scenarios.

As we have stated, both the windscreen and the Halo can be bolted on and off and be interchangeable from track-to-track as needed.

Today AR1.com asked IndyCar President Jay Frye what the status was of the windscreen and when we might see it implemented.

Jay, has the wind screen made any further progress? Do you anticipate that being implemented this coming year, or are we still a year away?

JAY FRYE: It's one of those processes where you're maybe two steps forward and one step back.

"There's a lot of different things that are going on with it. We should know more in the next couple weeks.

"There were some tests done last month, and part of it was really good, part of it wasn't so good, and that's one of the things that you've got to go about — again, I bring up this word the process, but there's so many — you want to make sure it's foolproof. You want to make sure what you do, there's always a cause-and-effect to everything we do, so is there a negative effect, that type thing.

"It's on going, the development of it. Actually there's other ideas, too, that we're looking at, so it could be all part of the whole piece. So it's still yet to be determined."

It's that last sentence that leaves us hope IndyCar will come to its senses, and, like all other open wheel formulas globally, implement the Halo except where it causes visibility problems.

The FIA has done extensive testing and determined the Halo is superior to a windscreen.

Our motto in such instances is quite simple. "When in doubt, just do what's right."

Other Press Conference Highlights

The search for IndyCar’s new title sponsor may be nearing an end — Mark Miles, the president and CEO of IndyCar parent Hulman & Co., said Wednesday he hopes to make a formal announcement before February’s scheduled test at Austin, Texas.

“Very soon," Miles said, describing the timeline. “Let’s put it this way. I want it on the cars and the fire suits if at all possible for the test. We also want the new sponsor to be involved in a new app and that takes time."

NTT Data, a sponsor with Chip Ganassi Racing, has been mentioned as a potential replacement for Verizon, which announced in October 2017 it would be leaving IndyCar at the end of last season.

NBC, IndyCar’s new broadcast partner, announced it will carry eight of the series’ 17 races on its primary network, beginning with the two Indianapolis races in May and concluding with the last two races of the season in September. The other nine events will be shown on NBC’s sports cable channel, NBCSN, starting with the season opener at St. Petersburg on March 10.

The network plans to air almost 350 hours of IndyCar racing across its platforms.

Miles said there is a possibility Surfer’s Paradise in Australia could be on the 2020 schedule in February; the series hasn’t raced in Australia since 2008 when the man who calls himself "I am Indy" killed it.

Mark C. reporting for AR1.com

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