MONZA, Italy (Reuters) - French Formula One driver Pierre Gasly has changed his opinion about the ‘Halo’ head protection device after seeing Australian Formula Three driver Alex Peroni’s crash in the Italian Grand Prix support event.
The 19-year-old hit a kerb and flew high in the air before landing upside down on the tyre wall and ending up in the catch fence.
“I must say I’ve never been a fan of the Halo,” Toro Rosso’s Gasly told reporters at Monza. “Looking at these images I think it’s clearly a good reason to have it.
“We will never know what would have happened without it but we don’t want to imagine.”
Peroni walked away from the accident but later said on social media that he had fractured a vertebra.
Gasly, 23, had made clear last year when the halo was made mandatory that he disliked a device designed to protect a driver’s head from flying wheels and debris as well as cockpit impacts.
“It’s just a big mess to get in the car and get out,” he had said.
The Frenchman was also a friend of compatriot Anthoine Hubert, who died last weekend at the Belgian Grand Prix after his crashed car was struck at speed by that of American-Ecuadorian Juan Manuel Correa.
Correa remains critical but stable on life support in a London hospital.
Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Sudipto Ganguly