Red Bull will run with its canopy cockpit protection system for an installation lap during Friday free practice at the Russian Grand Prix, the team has confirmed.

The Milton Keynes-based outfit has been working hard on its alternative to the Halo, with static crash tests having taken place over the last week to better understand how it will perform.

While testing of the concept is likely to continue over the next months, the team wants to trial the system on a car so it can gauge both driver visibility and fan opinion.

One of the issues with the Halo – which was trialled by Ferrari in pre-season testing – was that fans did not like how it looked.

Red Bull believes its canopy – which does away with the central pillar – will be more popular.

FIA F1 race director Charlie Whiting made it clear last week, however, that the final verdict on which design would be used from 2017 would be made on safety grounds.

However, if both performed equally well in protecting drivers, then the canopy could get the nod if teams preferred its look.

"Personally I would say the canopy is more aesthetically pleasing solution," said Whiting. "But it's only a matter of taste.

"However, if both solutions perform equally well in testing I would be surprised if there's an overwhelming desire to keep the Halo."

Red Bull has not yet decided which driver will run with the canopy.


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