Felipe Massa says he agrees the early 'halo' cockpit protector concept is an eyesore but has supported Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel is the believe it is needed in Formula 1.
The Brazilian driver was on track when Ferrari debuted its concept of a halo protector during installation laps on the final two days of pre-season testing to gauge the reaction of its drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel.
The Williams driver was involved in a high-profile accident in 2009 when he was struck by a suspension spring which had fallen from Rubens Barrichello's Brawn car during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix.
The piece of debris struck Massa on the helmet with him in the Ferrari cockpit and he suffered life-threatening injuries which took almost six months to recover from.
The halo cockpit protector is being trialled to reduce the risk of similar accidents after Justin Wilson lost his life when loose debris hit him on the head in a near-identical incident to Massa's in IndyCar last year.
Massa says he wasn't pleased with the aesthetics of the concept Ferrari ran in Barcelona but does feel the protector is a safety feature which needs to be implemented in F1.
“[It looked] not so nice,” Massa said. “Safety is the most important thing and I totally agree with the Halo or maybe with the closed cockpit or whatever, I agree with this change. But it doesn't look very nice to be honest, so we'll see how it's going to be. If it's good for safety, then it's fine.”
Currently, Nico Hulkenberg and Lewis Hamilton have made their stance firmly against any sort of cockpit protector while a number of drivers led by Rosberg and Vettel are in favour of it being introduced as early as 2017.