Closed cockpits in F1 within five to ten years - Chilton

© XPB 

Reacting to the tragic death last weekend of fellow Brit Justin Wilson, former Manor Marussia driver Max Chilton believes Formula 1 will eventually adopt a closed cockpit concept in the future.

Wilson was struck on the helmet by a heavy piece of flying debris in last weekend's Indycar race at Pocono in the US. The former Minardi and Jaguar racer succumbed to traumatic head injuries, and the racing community now looks to solutions to better protect the physical integrity of open-wheel drivers.

Max Chilton, whose former team mate Jules Bianchi suffered a severe head trauma in last year's Japanese Grand Prix and passed away last month, is convinced canopy protected cockpits are inevitable sometime in the future.

"That is the one weak area we have left in motorsport and that is the one bit we need to make a little bit more safe," Chilton told Sky Sports.

"There are dangers to having them, because if you are trapped you can't get out, but from what I have seen in the footage they are super strong. We just need to find a way of making it so that whatever type of crash you have you can get out 100 per cent."

Recently, in the aftermath of Bianchi's unfortunate accident, the FIA released footage of a jetfighter-style cockpit canopy enduring resistance and protection tests. There has been no information disseminated by the FIA however as to when or how such a protective measure could be introduced into F1.

"I think we can come around and design something that we are safer from debris, head-on collisions, tyre walls and we can still get out, " Chilton concluded.

"It is something I think is definitely the route to go. It might be in five years, it might be in 10 years, but I can guarantee you there will be covers eventually."

Click here for F1i's driver ratings after the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps. 

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