Monday, 14 may 2018, 13:01 , by Matthew Scott
F2 racer Tadasuke Makino believes the halo device on his Russia Time car saved his life in an incident during the Spanish Grand Prix. Makino collided with fellow Honda protégé Nirei Fukuzumi, whose Ardon mounted Makino's car as they spun into the gravel trap.
The halo on Makino's car and bodywork on its right side were clearly marked after the incident, but the safety device held up under the pressure of another car and both drivers were able to walk away from the crash unscathed.
It is the first on-track occurrence of the halo protecting a driver since it was introduced across Formula 1, F2 and GP2 for 2018.
Makino admitted that, like many other drivers and fans, he was unhappy with the halo when it was introduced to F2, but he says Sunday's incident has changed his mind.
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Asked if the device had saved his life, Makino told Motorsport: "I think so, yeah.
"The first time I tested this car I didn't think the halo was good, because it's difficult to see anything, but today the halo helped me. It's really important.
"I understand how the halo works now. I don't know what happened, but without the halo I think the tyre would have hit my helmet. It was a big surprise for me, the halo was a big help for me."
FIA race director Charlie Whiting confirmed that an investigation would be carried out about the matter and said Makino avoided "severe" injury.
"Judging from the pictures we saw, it seems that if it was not for Halo, the consequences could have been severe," he said. "But this is only my initial conclusion.
"However, the marks on the Halo start just at the point where the load was doubled during the system tests. So even if his life was not threatened, it is clear that the consequences of the incident could have been worse."