• October 27, 2021

Pirelli team member test positive for coronavirus

In the wake of the Australian Grand Prix being cancelled following a McLaren team member testing positive for COVID-19, several other staff members from the paddock were put in to self-isolation after displaying symptoms of the virus.

Pirelli has now affirmed that one of its crew has been confirmed as having contracted the virus, and is now undergoing treatment in Melbourne.

An announcement issued by the Italian tyre company said: “A member of the Pirelli F1 team has yesterday tested positive for COVID-19 in Melbourne.

“The person concerned is now following all the relevant procedures put in place by the Australian health authorities.

“These authorities have confirmed to Pirelli that this person has not had any contact with third parties that requires special preventive measures to be taken for other people.

“Pirelli is closely monitoring the situation in line with public health policies and company guidelines.”

The positive test for a McLaren team member on Thursday night prompted his team to withdraw from the F1 race, and triggered a sequence of events that resulted in the season opener being cancelled the following morning.

As a result of the McLaren positive test, 14 other members of the Woking-based team who were in close contact with the individual have been put into quarantine in Australia to ensure that they have not been infected.

F1 team personnel returning to their bases in Europe this week are also undergoing similar procedures, with staff advised not to return to factories for at least another fortnight.

There were seven further coronavirus tests during the aborted grand prix weekend, but these were all reported as negative.

F1 is targeting a start date of late May/early June for its new season, with Baku’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix the most likely season opener.

F1 managing director Ross Brawn said the series still hopes to have 17 or 18 races this year, but that is largely dependent on start date and how many European races can be held in June and July.

Steve Carr

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