MAY 21, 2015
Hinchliffe injuries unlikely in F1
A horror crash like the one suffered by Indycar star James Hinchcliffe is unlikely in formula one.
That is the claim of FIA technical delegate Joe Bauer.
On Monday, Hinchcliffe sustained horrific injuries during practice for the Indy 500, when a suspension arm pierced the car, went straight through his right thigh and into his left upper thigh and pelvis, cutting a major artery.
It is expected that the Canadian will recover.
As for whether a similar injury could be sustained in F1 today, Germany's Auto Motor und Sport claims that is unlikely.
First, F1 suspension arms are made of carbon fibre, not steel as in Indycar.
And, crucially, F1 cars are reinforced specifically for anti-penetration with a super-strong material called Zylon.
"We have Zylon over the entire length of the cockpit," said Bauer, "which prevents parts from penetrating from outside."
Zylon is also used in Indycar, but in F1 it protects the entire chassis, so it is possible Hinchcliffe's broken suspension damaged the reinforced areas.
And also in F1, the mounting points of the suspension are further reinforced with steel. "Indycar is still catching up in this area," claims Auto Motor und Sport correspondent Michael Schmidt.