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F1 ditches Halo concept for new 'Shield' design

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Formula One's Strategy Group has agreed to "give priority" to a new cockpit protection device, known as the Shield, over the previously mooted Halo concept.

The FIA has been pursuing an improvement in cockpit protection ever since the death of IndyCar driver Justin Wilson in 2015, which occurred after the Englishman was struck in the head by a loose piece of debris. Last year the Halo and Aeroscreen were trialled in winter testing and during Friday practice sessions as F1 looked to find an ideal solution.

Both Halo and Aeroscreen divided opinion in the paddock and the introduction of either device was pushed back to 2018 by the Strategy Group to give motorsport's governing body more time to weigh up the options. Since then, a new design has emerged which involves a see-through screen which will not cover the entire cockpit.

In the Strategy Group's press release on its agreements, it said the FIA "aims to carry out track tests of this system during this season in preparation for implementation in 2018" on the Shield concept.

The Halo design last year -- infamously dubbed the "worst modification in Formula One history" by Lewis Hamilton -- was first run by Ferrari in 2016's pre-season testing.

Red Bull then trialled a rival design, dubbed the Aeroscreen, which it rolled out at the Russian Grand Prix in Sochi.

Despite Red Bull's test, Halo had remained the FIA's favourite and the governing body ensured every driver completed at least one lap with the device on the car in order to give feedback on visibility.