Bell Helmets

Bell introduces its new Racestar HP1 helmet

Bell Racing Europe has the immense pleasure to announce that it completed certification of the very first helmet in the world to meet the new FIA 8860 Standard: The BELL Racestar HP1.

In their continuous quest to improve safety in Formula One and in autosport in general, FIA mandated TRL, a UK based research and development company, to develop a new standard for Advanced helmets for Automotive Sport that would by far exceed the most stringent existing standards. The basic requirements of the new standard seemed to be so high that FIA did not only finance the drafting of this new standard, but also decided to have TRL making a prototype helmet demonstrating the technical feasibility of the project.

FIA and TRL accepted the offer of Bell Racing Europe to work together with the purpose to develop the prototype helmet that would meet the new FIA 8860 standard. TRL focused mainly on the shell structure while Bell Racing supplied the impact energy absorbing inner liner as well as the helmet shell geometry and design. After of 2 years of R&D, the BELL Racestar HP1 in its FIA version was officially certified to both the FIA 8860 standard as well as to Snell SA2000 standard at the beginning of February 2004.

The BELL Racestar HP1 features a full carbon fiber shell combined with a specific expanded polystyrene energy absorbing liner. Its radical and innovative aerodynamic design features a totally integrated double screen anti- fog visor flush with the shell surface. The integrated visor brings a huge improvement on safety by removing most of the external projections of the shell surface in the visor area. It also improves and smoothens the aerodynamic flow, making the air intakes on the forehead area and the ventilation more efficient. Depending of the fit pad size and the mounted accessories such as spoilers, the BELL Racestar HP1 weighs only 1245 grams (+/- 5%), making it the lightest and the safest helmet actually available in the world for automobile racing.

The BELL Racestar HP1 can be equipped with various detachable spoilers and air intakes. Due to its actual method of fabrication and its very high cost price, the Bell Racestar HP1 will be reserved to Bell Racing F1 drivers and will be made available in the second part of 2004 to a few selected customers.

Since 50 years, Bell, the undisputed automobile racing helmet world leader, has pioneered an outstanding number of innovations, such as the first helmet combining an inner foam liner with an outer composite shell, the first full face helmet, the first adjustable ventilation systems, the first aerodynamic helmets and the first fog free shields. Today, Bell Racing Europe is very proud to add the first FIA specifications super helmet to this glorious list.

Bell Racing Europe would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the FIA for their continuous safety improvement efforts and TRL for their technical assistance that was essential to this project.

Author Notes:

Kenny Sanford contributes and publishes news editorial to  A buyers guide to all types of motorcycle helmets plus shields, goggles, custom and wired radio helmets.

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