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Vettel: Rejecting Halo would be ‘quite stupid’

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Sebastian Vettel believes not introducing the ‘Halo’ cockpit safety device to Formula 1 in 2017 would be “quite stupid”, saying that between 90 and 95 per cent of the drivers support it.

F1 driver Jules Bianchi and IndyCar’s Justin Wilson both died in 2015 as a result of head injuries sustained while racing, putting cockpit safety high on the FIA’s agenda moving forward.

The Halo was first trialled over pre-season in Barcelona before more tests through the year, going head-to-head with the ‘aeroscreen’ as a solution that could be introduced for 2017.

F1 drivers were given a briefing on the Halo over the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend ahead of a vote by the F1 Strategy Group on its introduction in Geneva today.

During Thursday’s FIA press conference, Vettel was informed that Renault’s Jolyon Palmer claimed most drivers were against Halo but afraid to voice their concerns.

“I’m a bit surprised about these comments because we had a vote among the drivers and I think 90 to 95 per cent voted for it, so I don’t know why all of a sudden it comes up the way it does,” Vettel responded.

“I think it’s the wrong impression as I think the majority in here as well said. We said we don’t like the look of it but I don’t think there’s anything really that justifies death.

“We’ve always learned from what happens, incidents that happen on track and we’ve tried to improve.

“That would be the first time in human history that we’ve learnt a lesson and we don’t change.

“So I think it’s up to us to make sure it does happen, otherwise I think we’d be quite stupid.”

Although the F1 Strategy Group can reject the Halo’s introduction at today’s meeting, the FIA does have the power to push it through on safety grounds should it see it fit to do so.

IndyCar at IMS Friday: How to watch, start times, live streaming info

IndyCar Indianapolis start times
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With three races remaining in the NTT IndyCar Series season, Scott Dixon has a commanding lead and history on his side entering Friday’s opener of the Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The five-time series champion leads defending champ Josef Newgarden by 72 points.

Since 2014, the points leader with three races left has won the championship in five of the past six years, including Dixon in ’18.

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver has led the championship standings following every round after opening 2020 with three consecutive victories. Dixon also led the points by 78 points with three races remaining when he won the title in 2008.

Dixon, Newgarden, Pato O’Ward, Colton Herta, Will Power, Graham Rahal and Takuma Sato are championship eligible.

Anyone outside 108 points of the lead after Indy will be eliminated heading into the Oct. 25 season finale at St. Petersburg, Florida.

Here is the IndyCar Harvest GP at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course schedule for Friday (all times are ET), including details and start times:


Indianapolis Motor Speedway TV schedule for Friday

IndyCar Harvest GP Race 1: 3:30 p.m., USA Network, NBC Sports Gold and streaming on the NBC Sports App and NBCSports.com); Leigh Diffey is the lead announcer for IndyCar on NBCSN this weekend with analysts Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy.


IndyCar Harvest GP, Race 1 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway start times, information

COMMAND TO START ENGINES: 3:53 p.m.

GREEN FLAG: 4 p.m.

DISTANCE: The race is 85 laps (207.35 miles) around Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s a 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course in Indianapolis.

TIRE ALLOTMENT: Nine sets primary, five sets alternate (A 10th set of primary tires is available to any car fielding a rookie.) Teams must use one set of primary and one set of alternate tires in the race.

PUSH TO PASS: 200 seconds of total time with a maximum time of 20 seconds per activation.

FORECAST: According to Wunderground.com, it’s expected to be 57 degrees with a 0% chance of rain at the green flag.

QUALIFYING: 6:20 p.m. Thursday (NBC Sports Gold)

ENTRY LIST: Click here for the 25 drivers racing this weekend at Indianapolis