SILVERSTONE -- Sebastian Vettel will be the first man to trial the Shield cockpit protection device in opening practice for the British Grand Prix.
Last week the FIA revealed the first concept images of the latest device being trialled for implantation in 2018. Motorsport's governing body has been pushing for some form of cockpit protection since the death of Justin Wilson in 2015, caused when he was hit by a flying piece of debris in an IndyCar race.
The Shield has emerged as the FIA's favoured design, replacing the controversial Halo tested extensively in 2016, as well as the Aeroscreen Red Bull introduced at last year's Russian Grand Prix. With the FIA determined to implement some form of cockpit protection in 2018 Vettel's feedback will be crucial in giving an early indication of whether it is a workable solution.
Ferrari tweeted a picture of the device installed on Vettel's car on Thursday.
"I will run it tomorrow, we will see for how long," the German said. "I have seen it on the computer, I haven't seen it in real life yet. I'm going to check it out later on and then obviously it depends how it feels."
The device will also go through a series of indoor and outdoor tests ahead of a proper track run at Monza in September. Teams are helping the FIA decide on the geometry of the device, which runs around the cockpit.