IndyCar adds tethers to keep aero parts attached in accidents

IndyCar has announced it will add tethers to help keep aerodynamic components attached next year, in a response to Justin Wilson's death

IndyCar adds tethers to keep aero parts attached in accidents

British driver Wilson succumbed to head injuries sustained when he was struck on the helmet by a dislodged nosecone at Pocono in August.

High-tensile zylon tethers will be added with a view to keeping more components attached to Dallara chassis in the event of an accident.

Rear wings and rear-wheel guards will be reinforced for all races, nosecones on superspeedway (rated as 1.5 miles or longer) races and the front wing main planes at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Texas and Pocono.

MARK GLENDENNING: Safety improvements are no quick fix

The new tethers will accompany existing support mechanisms on wheels and the main plane of the rear wing.

IndyCar has also moved to stop spinning cars becoming airborne on superspeedways, in the wake of a number of accidents with Chevrolet and Honda's then-new oval aero kits during practice for the Indy 500.

A domed skid plate will combine with a rear wing flap that deploys at 90 degrees, when a car spins and travels backwards.

The revisions were partly developed in General Motors' wind tunnel and will be tested at Indy on April 6.

"It is a continual goal to improve safety for all the participants, fans and drivers alike," Will Phillips, IndyCar vice president of Technology said.

"We also need to do this in a fashion that does not create more yellow-flag racing and try to prevent as much debris as possible.

"We have great support from our partners to improve safety and wish to thank Chevrolet, Honda and Dallara for their participation and efforts in working together to implement change."

ECUs will also be tweaked, to prevent cars rolling forward during pitstops when not in neutral and a fuel hose is engaged by returning the engine to idle and engaging the clutch.

Another failsafe will improve the speed of the engine being put into idle if the applied throttle or brake-pedal pressure exceeds a calibrated threshold.

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