Formula 2 chassis manufacturer Dallara is introducing a new car for the 2018 Formula 2 season, with the first look at it being shown off this weekend in Monza.
The new chassis set to more closely resemble current F1 cars, with more aggressive styling and turbocharged engines. Another thing it’s borrowing from F1 which might not be so popular however is the Halo device. Yep, it’s not just F1 cars that’ll have them next year, F2 cars will as well.
Formula 2 race director Laurent Mekies explained to RACER the reasons behind it’s introduction, saying that the call for F2 to get the Halo in 2018 came directly from Jean Todt himself.
“It was always in our minds that, as we do for most things, you go to F1 first – you go to one of the world championships first because this is where we do the R&D most of the time – and then we have the cascading of what we develop into other categories and it normally comes one, two, or three years after.
“So in all respects it’s a very, very tight call. The president of the FIA pushed very hard on all of us to get fast deployment of the Halo because he felt there was nothing that should push us to protect the big guys [in F1] more than the other guys. Therefore we are trying to deploy as fast as possible, which is a good thing.”
Mekies also explained that basically the Halo has to be introduced now because Formula 2 cars tend to get used for several seasons, not incorporating it now could mean it’s a good few years before they get another chance to put it on the cars.
“The other factor that made us push as hard is that the Halo is not something you can adapt on a current car, and as a result if you miss the slot on a new car then it is game over, or nearly so. For obvious reasons such as cost, the single-seaters that are not F1 are changed between every three or every six years, so you might miss a six-year window in an extreme situation.
“There’s a positive effect in deploying quickly because you set the new standard and that’s what fans want to see and perhaps the car will look old without it now. We’ll see.”
Judging by the reaction to the F1 announcement I’m not entirely sure fans will want to see the Halo on F2 cars, but there can be little doubt that it’s good to see the FIA taking safety seriously in another series. Given the amount of massive accidents in F2, perhaps it’s introduction is even more important there than it is in F1!
The Halo that’ll be shown off on the cars this weekend isn’t going to be the final design as, like in F1, it hasn’t been fully finalised yet.