Legal row over F1’s halo reached “very positive” resolution – FIA president

2022 F1 season

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FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem says the governing body has reached a “very positive” settlement to the legal row over its Halo safety system.

It faced a claim over an alleged patent infringement brought by a designer, Jens Nygaard.

The Halo structure was introduced to Formula 1 and other series beginning in 2018. It has been credited for the role it played in protecting drivers in several serious crashes, including Romain Grosjean’s fireball shunt at Bahrain in 2020.

It was introduced under former FIA president Jean Todt, whom Ben Sulayem replaced at the end of last year. Following that he learned of the legal row over the design. The matter was settled earlier this year.

Ben Sulayem drew attention to the case as he began his speech to the FIA Annual General Assembly in Bologna today.

Ben Sulayem learned of Halo row after election last year
“One of my first actions as president was to be transparent about the legal challenges we faced,” he said. “So, I am very happy to tell you that the Halo litigation has been resolved in a very positive way, safeguarding the future of the FIA, and I thank the legal team for all their hard work.”

Since his election win 12 months ago, Ben Sulayem has made transparency a priority of his administration. In F1 the mishandling of last year’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the safety concerns which arose at this year’s Japanese Grand Prix and Red Bull’s breach of the 2021 budget cap were all detailed in lengthy public reports.

In his comments to FIA delegates today, Ben Sulayem pledged to continue in that vein. “This transparency had to go further,” he said. “That is why we commissioned independent audits of our finances and governance which have shaped our plans for the future.

“That means balancing the books and reforming the FIA to deliver more for its members.”

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  • 34 comments on “Legal row over F1’s halo reached “very positive” resolution – FIA president”

    1. The halo solves a problem that the FIA created themselves. By making cars bigger and heavier it was inevitable that more critical crashes would occur. Also, I dont buy it what people say about all these crashes where halo saved the life of the driver. It’s an exaggeration in most cases. I keep saying this: in more than 20 years, halo wasn’t necessary once (and even in Bianchi’s case it wouldn’t have helped), but in 5 years since its introduction we already have cases where the halo, presumably, saved the lives of like what, 10 drivers? How is that possible? 2000’s cars were already safe enough (Kubica’s crash proves that), but when you keep pushing for changes that go against racing principles, you get compromises like this. I’m not saying halo it’s bad but it shouldn’t have been necessary if the cars were built as they should be.

      1. Complete and utter nonsense @apophisjj.

        The halo was introduced for a very clear reason – to prevent serious accidents involving large objects, usually wheels, aimed at a driver’s head. Justin Wilson’s death in IndyCar was a factor that the FIA referenced time and time again, but as predictably as the tide people tried deflecting the halo’s use case, claiming it wouldn’t prevent Bianchi’s death, which at no point the FIA claimed.

        The weight of the cars is irrelevant. A lighter car and lack of halo would not have resulted in Zhou keeping his head in Silverstone this year, and it wouldn’t have saved Dennis Hauger’s life in F2 on the same weekend. If you can’t think of a single use case in 20 years for the halo, do try thinking about it for more than 5 seconds.

        “(insert era here) cars were already safe enough” is the mantra of fools who get people killed in the future, for no reason other than their own insecurities. “racing principles” is again another nonsense term that means nothing other than “i don’t like it”. It’s up there with “un-american” and “against the DNA of F1” in terms of worthlessness. Thankfully the actual decision makers here can see beyond their own noses.

        1. Coventry Climax
          9th December 2022, 12:47

          Though what you, @ciaran, say has indeed some weight , that same word -weight- is very relevant to any incident’s impact. And that’s not an opinion, but a given fact, by laws of physics. But to make it simple:
          Given the same speed and smashed into a wall, which do you think causes the bigger impact, a 2 gram feather or a 500 kg block of concrete?
          With the increased weight, impact is increased, which requires stronger safety measures, which weigh more, which induces a bigger impact, which requires stronger safety measures, etc. Vicious circle is what that’s called.
          The lighter the object, the easier it is to slow down, either by -whatever type of intended- braking or impact. On impact, that results in much lighter and much more efficient crash zones, to slow down the object as evenly as possible (keeping the G’s down), in order to protect the occupant(s) inside.
          So what @apophisjj says does certainly not classify as ‘Complete and utter nonsense’.
          Where you’re right though, is with objects aimed at the driver’s head. There would have been other -and more elegant-solutions for that, but the FIA was in a bit of a hurry, after ignoring the issue for too long in the first place.
          Bianchi’s issue is not about halo or weight or whatever. It’s about ‘rescue’ vehicles on the track at the wrong time, and possibly about implementing a remote controlled maximum speed for all cars when yellow or red flag situations arise.
          Lastly, Zhou would have kept his head even without halo. That’s what the rollbar is designed for.

          1. The feather analogy doesn’t really reflect the changes in weight argument. The difference between getting hit on the head by a 600kg car at 200kph and an 800kg car at 200kph isn’t much in terms of outcome… you’d still be dead. Yes the force would be less but the result the same. Put a halo in the way and the chance of survival increases quite a lot in both scenarios. Even for a 2g M6 nut at 200kph the halo improves the chances of avoiding injury. Like it or not, halo is here to stay and will likely evolve to help control more accident scenarios.

            1. Coventry Climax
              10th December 2022, 0:31

              @gobert, I did not say I am opposed to the halo. I also said he was right where objects aimed at the head are concerned. (Although the halo wouldn’t have made much change to, for example, the spring that hit Massa’s eye.)
              I would ask you to explain how a weight difference analogy could fail to reflect any weight difference, but on second thought, don’t bother.
              Apparently you read poorly, feel offended and seem to think I’m opposed.
              Let me offend you properly then and suggest that you studying physics a bit. Preferably more than the 5 seconds mentioned. And then, maybe, we’ll talk again about the difference that extra weight makes to the effort needed to put an object to stop.

          2. The roll-bar failed on Zhou’s car in Britain when the car flipped, so the halo did save his life. There are cases in the past where people have attributed the halo as what prevented a head injury when it was actually the roll-bar (e.g. Ericsson Monza 2018) but in this case, without the halo, Zhou’s head would be scrapping along the ground (you can see the roll-bar rip off and be left on the track).

            1. Coventry Climax
              10th December 2022, 0:37

              OK, didn’t know that. Do you know if the FIA also came up with revised rules and tests for the rollbar strength after Zhou’s incident? That would obviously have made sense, but with the FIA, you never know. They probably forgot that the extra weight of their cars also required extra strength – and thus even heavier- rollbars. ;-)

            2. Coventry Climax Yes, the FIA did update the rules for the roll hoop, fe: motorsport article on roll hoop (and porpoising) rule changes)

              Changes will be required to the top of the roll hoop design, which is aimed at reducing the chances of it digging into the ground during a similar incident as was the case with Zhou’s car.

              The minimum height for the point at which the homologation test is applied will also be made, while there will be a new homologation test to better test roll hoops against adverse loads.

              It is hoped that for 2024 the homologation tests for roll hoops will be overhauled to further improve the safety of the part.

        2. someone or something
          9th December 2022, 13:00

          Tough but spot-on.

      2. Safety is a moving target, every year there is new technology that changes the dynamics of safety. Look at the issues around the hybrid systems and the extra risks of shock and fire they now pose over previous generation cars. The sport has moved on since the 2000’s and the cars are different beasts now. Sure they could reduce the size of the cars a little but they’re not going to get back the 25+Kg from increasing the wheel size or suddenly lose the battery system which is a huge burden of weight or indeed reduce the impact requirements which mean more carbon fibre is required for the chassis.

        The debate over whether Halo is required is over, the haters of it lost and need to move on. Actual engineers and drivers have come forward in F1 and stated it has prevented serious harm and potentially saved lives already. This isn’t a debate anymore, it’s fact.

      3. @apophisjj were the cars of the 2000’s really as safe as you think, or was it more that random chance simply meant that some of the near misses did not turn into a fatal accident?

        It is somewhat ironic that you use Kubica as an example, because Kubica himself advocated for further improvements in safety standards on the back of the very crash in Canada that you are citing (mainly because, as noted at the time, Kubica was rather lucky not to suffer leg injuries when the front of the survival cell failed during the crash).

        He also criticised exactly the same sort of mentality that you have precisely because he’d been in such an accident and acknowledged that, whilst the safety standards of the time saved him, he could also have very easily have been much more severely injured with only a minor change in events. As far as he was concerned, he’d rather not have to be severely injured first to make individuals like yourself acknowledge that there might be a potential risk and then take action to address it.

        Similarly, we had cases like Luciano Burti’s crash during the 2001 Belgian GP, where the head injuries that Burti suffered in his crash were a contributing factor to him having to end his career as a competitive driver, and where Irvine initially thought that Burti had been killed when he hit the barriers. Burti might have survived, but the tyres from the tyre barrier were still able to strike his head with enough force to injure him.

        Other drivers, too, have had instances of debris either coming dangerously close to striking their head, or where debris was even able to enter the cockpit area and it was simply by sheer luck that it did not cause a fatal injury – Perez in 2012 during the Monaco GP, where parts of the barrier system were able to strike him in the head and cause concussion, or a tyre from Raikkonen’s car nearly striking Chilton in the head during the 2014 British GP.

        Coventry Climax, part of the reason why the FIA did not act was because of individuals like Apophis, and yourself, insisting that nothing did need to be done because of claims that “the current rules are good enough” or “we don’t need it because the roll bar is good enough to do the job”. It was not acted on because the pressure was on the FIA not to act because there was an insistence that what we had was “good enough”.

        1. Mr Anon, I am all in favour of safety improvements, but sometimes what we have is good enough. For example, when Massa was hit by the torsion bar, that was a freak accident. The chances of it hitting anything, let alone hitting Massa at high speed precisely in the visor slot, were remarkably small. And whilst Massa suffered a bad eye injury, the helmet did a remarkable life-saving job. Massa was knocked unconscious by the impact, but it may even have been that the collapsing visor hinge dissipated enough energy to prevent serious injury.

          But the kneejerk reaction on forums like this was to say this was a terrible failure, that the visor hinge must not fail under any circumstances, that helmets should bebulletproof. Trouble is, making the helmet even stronger typically means adding mass to it, and extra mass means extra momentum in a crash, extra strain on the driver’s neck, and it is that tearing action on the neck which is most damaging to the driver.

          Since then, I cannot recall any driver having an accident where the helmet needed to protect the driver from low flying high energy impacts to the visor area, but obviously there are plenty of instances of drivers having high speed, high decelleration crashes where different aspects of the helmet design, along with the Hans device, has been much more important in saving drivers.

          So I’m not saying we should ever say “what we’ve got is good enough”, and I’m certainly not saying the halo is a bad idea, but you’ve got to make sure that the changes you make are well-designed and well-analysed, not just well intentioned.

        2. Coventry Climax
          10th December 2022, 0:58

          Anon, could you tell me where in my reply it is exactly that I say that I’m opposed to the halo?
          More specific, where it is I am ” insisting that nothing did need to be done because of claims that “the current rules are good enough” or “we don’t need it because the roll bar is good enough to do the job”.?
          Read again. Notice where I say “the FIA was in a bit of a hurry, after ignoring the issue for too long in the first place.”?

          I’m not a fan of the halo, for a number of reasons. One of them, but there’s many more, being that it does nothing to prevent small objects from hitting a driver’s head.
          However, that does not -and in no way- translate to me being opposed to solving issues that led the introduction of the halo.

          I say: There’s better solutions to pencils than a fountain pen.
          You say: You’re opposed to writing!

          I say: Seems to me you have a serious reading problem.

      4. Apophis, before the halo came into use, I was in favour of the aeroshield concept championed by Red Bull, in part because of the weight of the halo and the consequences you have outlined. However, I have to admit the halo has worked very well. Consider, for example, when Max parked his Red Bull on top of a Mercedes. That was a really positive example of the value of the halo.

        It is important though for people to realise that safety features can have unexpected consequences, and that common sense isn’t always sensible. There was a time when cars were built like tanks, thinking this extra strength would protect the driver, but now we know that a car which crumples and breaks apart in a crash is much safer for the driver. Adding mass to the F1 car in the form of the halo and bolting it firmly onto the survival cell might protect the driver in some accidents, but in others it can mean extra dangerous energy which cannot be dissipated so easily in a crash.

        So I think we can all have our opinions on these things, but it is rarely a clear-cut issue one way or another.

      5. I dont buy it what people say about all these crashes where halo saved the life of the driver. It’s an exaggeration in most cases.

        I’m amazed you can even say such a thing, and saying this is all an exaggeration is even more incredible. There have been cases where tyres have left skid marks on top of the halo. It is impossible to know exactly how many lives have been saved, but it could easily be several dozen. The sad part is it took until 2018 to have fitting it made mandatory. The world would have been a better place if it was made mandatory several decades earlier.
        Unfortunately comments like yours will be seen by accountants who think the world would be better if their team didn’t have to pay for expensive life saving equipment being fitted to the racing car. Yes, there are actually people who would much rather a team risk a driver’s life than to expend money for life saving equipment. I have a suspicion such people don’t have an aversion to wanting expensive office equipment for themselves.

        1. I don’t understand why so many are against that comment: I think he makes a good point, from 1994 to 2014 no one died, despite the halo not being there, so from a statistical point of view, how is it that in 4 years or something we’d have had 10 + deaths were it not for the halo? It doesn’t make sense, there were some dangerous ones, like when alonso’s car flew above some other driver, but to say it saved 10 lives is exagerated and doesn’t agree with statistics, why would accidents be dangerous since 2018 than before?

          Why not more safety, that’s not the point, but you can’t credit the halo for all of those accidents, majority of those wouldn’t have resulted in deaths.

          1. Coventry Climax
            10th December 2022, 1:12

            I also don’t understand why people
            – get so angry when they themselves are at fault and read something in an answer that isn’t actually there.
            – are so opposed to attributing consequences to their correct cause and/or vice versa. Why would you want to keep supporting a (any) false claim?
            – seemingly feel the immediate need to call someone else’s writings ‘utter rubbish’ or whatever. If it really is, why don’t they take the time to explain and enlighten?

            Don’t get me wrong, I’m no saint and I make mistakes, like anybody else.
            But sometimes these comments here..

        2. more dangerous*

      6. @apophisjj @esploratore1 Coventry Climax @ciaran

        Given the integrity this forum has for F1 fans I think we should go analyse real world examples as oppose to theoretical physics debates. Single seat race cars have always been thrown in the air and have always been rolled to some extent. We can look to Senna Brundle in F3 in 1983 or Diniz at Nurburgring 1999 as examples where we may now credit the halo for doing the roll hoop’s job. However a proper trend analysis clearly indicates a rise in the need for the halo from 2018 onwards.

        If I look at the pre 2018 incidents it is clear the remaining weakness in driver safety is an object entering the cockpit. In Melbourne 2007 Coulthard vs Wurz was a worrying start, Henry Surtees was killed in 2009 from a loose wheel one week prior to Massa’s accident in Hungary. In 2010, Trulli and Chandok collided in Monaco then Liuzzi and Schumacher tangled in Abu Dhabi. In 2012 we had the Grosjean incident at Spa with Alonso. Alonso was involved again in 2013 in Silverstone avoiding Perez’ delaminated tyre. Justin Wilson was killed in 2015 and Alonso and Raikkonen collided in Austria. Bianchi’s death would not have been assisted by the halo but that makes an average of one incident per season with 3 deaths.

        If we look post 2018 we have Leclerc and Alonso in Spa, Grosjean in Bahrain, The 2021 Monza incident and Zhou in 2022 where the roll hoop failed. So that average of roughly one per season continues with a life changing injury avoided certainly once, likely 3 times.

        I understand the halo is imperfect, indeed in Hulkenburg’s Abu Dhabi crash and Zhou’s they were unable to escape as a result of it – but cockpit entry is undoubtedly still an issue.

        The next question for the sport should be: if the aerocreen would do a better job in Massa 2009 style accidents and is not used due to wet weather running, should we introduce it anyway given the cars rarely run in the wet anyway these days?

        1. @rbalonso, some very interesting points there.

          Re halo vs aeroscreen, I think the halo is probably stronger in accidents where it functions as a second roll hoop, such as Zhou’s crash, and it does a pretty good job of preventing large debris like wheels hitting the driver. Maybe they could continue with the halo but add an aeroshield cover for better protection, and in wet weather, remove the aeroshield and use halo only. I’m not sure it is necessary though. The Massa accident was pretty unlikely, and even then the halo might have deflected the debris.

          Re increase in accidents, it may be the psychology of safety, that the safer you make the cars, by adding halos etc, the more drivers will push the limit because the consequences are perceived to be less severe. You see the same in everyday life. Disk brakes should make a family car safer, but many drivers just drive faster and closer to the car in front because they think the disk brakes makes it safer.

          1. Yeah totally agree that the safety factor correlates with unnecessary accidents. The reason we need the halo is that these close quarters collisions happen more per weekend now than per season in the 60s/70s. Norris crashing at Spa was entirely emblematic of the issue – with a gravel run off there he would have arrived 20mph slower. I remember a daft collision between Kubica and Giovinazzi in Abu Dhabi where AG loitered at the exit for so long knowing he would never make the pass but might get the other guy a penalty for forcing him onto a tarmac run off.

            With that said, we need to legislate for the sport we have not necessarily the sport we would like.

    2. Coventry Climax
      9th December 2022, 13:02

      “very positive” resolution for whom?
      I somehow doubt it’s very positive for the original designer, given these words by Ben Sulayem:
      “So, I am very happy to tell you that the Halo litigation has been resolved in a very positive way, safeguarding the future of the FIA, and I thank the legal team for all their hard work.”
      Not telling what exactly the resolution was makes matters worse, both for my doubt here, as well as for my belief in Ben Sulayem’s claim to prioritise transperency.

      1. Coventry Climax
        9th December 2022, 13:04

        transparency with a second ‘a’, sorry.

      2. It’s understandable there are limits to transparency in an organization; litigation is typically an area where there is non-disclosure. Reading between the lines they have reached a settlement where they have purchased the patent or licensed it long-term.

      3. Coventry Climax, to be fair, the documents from the Texan court handling the case indicate that there is a non-disclusure agreement between the two sides, which would likely prohibit the FIA for publishing the sort of information you are asking for in your post.

        It is debatable whether you could really call Nygaard “the original designer”, as what he filed a patent for was ‘a system for fitting a strengthening member to a vehicle’ (https://patents.justia.com/inventor/jens-h-s-nygaard) – in his case, the idea was to use it on road cars.

        It perhaps didn’t help his case that he was citing the use of roll cages in motorsport as an inspiration for his idea for a system that could be fitted to a road car to improve the resistance of the roof to crushing when a road car rolls over (and, when you read the system he is describing, the relationship to the Halo device does seem to be tenuous).

        As for that comment about the legal team – Nygaard wasn’t just suing the FIA, he was also simultaneously pursuing Dallara for using it on their junior formula cars, suing Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari for using it on their F1 cars – but only those three teams, for some reason – and also launching lawsuits against some drivers (he seems to have had a particular grudge against Charles Leclerc for some inexplicable reason). Nygaard even decided, for good measure, to sue Ferrari’s road car division.

        What is known is that the case seems to have been dismissed “with prejudice” against Nygaard – i.e. Nygaard is not permitted to file the case again in Texas – whereas it was “without prejudice” on the part of the FIA, with both sides also agreeing to pay their own legal costs. By that point, most of the other lawsuits that Nygaard had been launching against those other parties had already been struck down by the courts as invalid or filed against parties that were exempt from prosecution.

        It suggests that Nygaard might have been close to losing the case and probably agreed a deal with the FIA to withdraw the suit to cut his losses short, rather than risk losing the case (which might have resulted in more significant costs for Nygaard and potentially could have also seen his patent being ruled as invalid).

        1. Thank you for filling in some of the missing bits from the report. As soon as you said the case was brought to a court in America I became worried about the quality of the patent infringement claim.

        2. Coventry Climax
          10th December 2022, 1:25

          That is useful additional information.
          It does however change nothing about my opinion on Ben Sulayem, or maybe better, his choice of words, as he would have been wise to leave out the public thanks to his legal team. It adds nothing -if not the opposite- to his transparency claim. (check check double check, yep spelled it correct this time. ;-) )

    3. Does anyone know in simple terms, what the patent was actually for, what aspect of the halo it related to that is the infringement? I’ve looked at the very lengthy court documents and it just seems to say over and over that Nygaard invented the halo. I’d have thought there was plenty of prior art in the form of roll bars and screen splitters in aviation, enough to make the halo an obvious development, but maybe Nygaard is claiming that the “invention” is using a central pillar thin enough to not obstruct the driver’s vision. Whatever it is, whilst looking though various docs I found that Ferrari has patented halo stafety structures for road cars.

      1. Is the anon comment above helping anything? My read found this part quite useful to answer your question

        It is debatable whether you could really call Nygaard “the original designer”, as what he filed a patent for was ‘a system for fitting a strengthening member to a vehicle’ (https://patents.justia.com/inventor/jens-h-s-nygaard) – in his case, the idea was to use it on road cars.

        It perhaps didn’t help his case that he was citing the use of roll cages in motorsport as an inspiration for his idea for a system that could be fitted to a road car to improve the resistance of the roof to crushing when a road car rolls over (and, when you read the system he is describing, the relationship to the Halo device does seem to be tenuous).

        1. @bosyber, thank you for pointing me in the direction of the patent. I’ve since found a copy of it on Google patents which has the advantage of including the diagrams and makes it clearer what the invention is.

          https://patents.google.com/patent/US7494178B2/en

          The patent is the usual attempt to describe every possible variation on a vague idea. One aspect of it is that it mentions the device could be mounted ahead of the driver, unlike the roll bar which is typically mounted behind the driver. I wondered if Nygaard had ever seen the safety cage in a stock car, for example, which very definitely extends in front of the driver.

          It mentions that the structure does not need to be centred in front of the driver, so that isn’t a key aspect of the invention, but it does say that it could be directly in front of the driver in a single seater without obstructing vision. Again, that is hardly an invention, just a well known feature of optics, which we see in, for example, a pair of goggles where the structure is very close to the eyes, or the ballistic grills in armoured vehicles where have several bars across the viewport and the brain quickly learns to ignore them. The VW Camper vans and Morris Minors had split screens for many years and demonstrates that a central support structure in the field of view is by no means innovative. And of course, F1 cars were already putting the aerials along the centre line of the car because they knew it doesn’t obstruct the driver’s vision.

          The diagrams do include a single seater with a three point halo like F1 uses, but does that mean he “invented” it? It may be that this configuration is an obvious solution to the safety cage engineers, and patents shouldn’t be issued for things which are obvious to experts in the field.

    4. Oh, thanks for the “transparency” on this resolution…so….what exactly was the “legal row” arguments, the resolution or outcome, and how was it positive?

    5. Jens Nygaard. so Lego developed the halo?
      Probably another Nygaard, not the footbal player..

      so some backstory:

      A Texas federal judge has shielded automobile makers from patent infringement claims, leaving the regulator and owners of Formula One to face the lawsuit.

      Norwegian inventor Jens Nygaard sued Formula One as well as car manufacturers including Ferrari and Daimler, and decorated racing driver Lewis Hamilton.

      The claims relate to the Halo safety device installed in Formula One racing cars, designed to protect drivers in the event of a crash.

      Nygaard claims he engaged with Formula One for years to try and have his patented Halo design installed in racing cars—and when they eventually were, he was not compensated.

      But since the suit was filed last year, the US District Court for the Western District of Texas has whittled down a lengthy list of defendants which included racing drivers and teams.

      The court dismissed the suits against Hamilton and fellow F1 driver Charles Leclerc under the customer-suit exception, which protects end-product consumers from being sued for patent infringement.

      The court has now invoked this same doctrine to dismiss claims against Ferrari, Mercedes owner Daimler, and the Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix team. The February 18 decision follows the dismissal of claims against Red Bull’s racing team earlier this month.

      Mercedes and Daimler also informed the court on Friday, February 19 that it had filed a petition to cancel Nygaard’s Halo patent at the US Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). The PTAB is expected to decide whether to institute inter partes review in August this year.

      Patent infringement claims remain outstanding against Formula One’s management company, as well as its governing body, the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile.

      Last August, Formula One was rebuffed in its efforts to block a trademark application which it claimed would cause confusion with the ‘F1’ brand.

      The UK Intellectual Property Office ruled that sports brand owner Bux & Co’s ‘F1T’ trademark was unlikely to cause confusion in the market place.

      1. Thanks @seth-space for that, your post and above anon post were quite useful for me to understand a bit about this isssue (which I had so far missed just about completely).

        I found this part:

        Mercedes and Daimler also informed the court on Friday, February 19 that it had filed a petition to cancel Nygaard’s Halo patent at the US Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). The PTAB is expected to decide whether to institute inter partes review in August this year.

        also interesting; I’d guess it is both to remove a bad quality patent, but also for the car company it might be useful to prevent any future extra reinforcement to their cars from falling foul of that one.

        Also, I guess this man is not a professional patent-troll because he would have known better than sue big companies like Daimler, or Ferrari and Red Bull who have motivation and means to fight back, rather than smaller ones that would have to worry about the time and bill.

        1. @bosyber, definitely not a professional patent troll. As well as trying to sue high-profile teams, he also tried to sue LeClerc and Hamilton, presumably thinking they had deeper pockets than other drivers, whilst seemingly being totally oblivious to the clause in patents that you cannot sue the consumer of the infringing product, so not a professional patent troll.

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