Racing Point F1 driver, Sergio Perez was absent from the paddock on Thursday following an inconclusive COVID-19 test and had self-isolated himself for the day. A second test has confirmed that Perez has tested positive meaning he will be forced to miss this year’s Formula One British Grand Prix. The FIA and Formula 1 management have also confirmed that the Mexican driver is in fact tested positive. They mentioned that Perez has entered self-quarantine under the instructions of the relevant public health authorities in the United Kingdom and will continue to follow the mandated guidelines. All parties who were in contact with Perez leading up to the race weekend, especially Racing Point team members and mechanics have also been quarantined.
FIA official statement mentions; “With assistance of the local organiser of the British Grand Prix, local health authorities and the FIA COVID-19 delegate, a full track and trace initiative has been undertaken and all close contacts have been quarantined.
The procedures set out by the FIA and Formula 1 have provided for swift containment of an incident that will have no wider impact on this weekend’s event.”
Racing Point F1 team have confirmed that Perez is physically well and in good spirits. However, he will continue to self isolate under strict health and safety guidelines.
Luckily for Racing Point, the factory is at arm’s length from the Silverstone race track which should help make matters somewhat easier to manage.
F1 Race Director Michael Masi stated; “We’re working with the team. They’ll make an approach to the FIA and based on the circumstances we would approve such a change and that driver would continue on for the rest of the weekend”
He confirmed that the replacement for Perez for the weekend has not been made official as yet. However, paddock speculations predict, Esteban Gutierrez, Mercedes Reserve driver may be called upon. Some believe that Nico Hulkenberg, who could also possibly considered having raced with the team already in the past. Stoffel Vandoorne who is the lead reserve driver is currently occupied with his commitment in Formula E racing for the Mercedes-Benz EQ team in Berlin.
Update: Nico Hulkenberg has been confirmed to be the replacement for Sergio Perez for Racing Point for the British Grand Prix. Hulkenberg left the sport at the end of the 2019 season after his stint at Renault. Hulkenberg has been called upon by his former team, who he raced with back in 2012, and from 2014 to 2016 under the Force India name.
Racing Point is expected to announce Perez’s temporary replacement ahead of the first Free Practice session on Friday. Three races have been concluded in the 2020 F1 championship with the late start of the season due to COVID-19. For the fourth and fifth race of the season, Silverstone will host a doubleheader with the British Grand Prix this weekend followed by the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at the same track. Whether Perez will compete in the following race remains to be seen at this point as it will all depend on another test prior to the race weekend.
We at Express Drives extend our support to Sergio Perez, wishing him a speedy recovery and hope to seem him back on track soon.
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