The FIA are set to impose stricter tests on the roll hoop of next year’s Formula 1 cars after Zhou Guanyu’s frightening crash at Silverstone last month.
The Chinese driver escaped unharmed after his Alfa Romeo flipped following contact from George Russell, before skidding across the tarmac and gravel and flipping again above the tyre barrier and into the catchment fencing.
The rookie escaped unscathed, his head protected from serious injury by the titanium Halo device that rings the cockpit.
But the roll hoop failed after contact with the track via a force previously unforeseen and Alfa have been working with the FIA to analyse the crash, alongside other teams.
Alfa are the ony team to currently utilise a “spike” hoop design, but this could be banned for 2023 as technical delegates discuss changes to next year’s cars.
“The analysis is still ongoing, we’re working since the first day with the FIA to try to reconstruct the accident and assess as best as we can,” Alfa Romeo technical director Jan Monchaux said.
“Because it’s not an easy task, the force involved. As yet the internal investigations are not completely finished, so I won’t disclose anything. And if someone will disclose something, it’s going to be the FIA.
“In between, the FIA has asked all the teams to provide feedback, imposing several load cases on their respective roll hoops to understand potentially where there’s room for improvement in effect.
“The load cases that are being imposed by the rules, you have some vectors where you need to apply a force on the front and on the rear of your roll hoop [that] are potentially not the most adequate for the kind of accident we had, where effectively you have a car sliding, so subjected to forces that are quite flat, and not so much a kind of vertical impact.
“So there might be here changes in the future. But I believe the FIA will come back before the shutdown [summer break] with some new recommendations, additional tests. We have to see what they will draw out from the feedback of all the teams.”
The news comes as the FIA’s technical directive regarding the floors of this year’s cars comes into effect at the Belgian Grand Prix at the end of the month.