McLaren team member ‘recovering well’

Michelle Foster
McLaren PA

Australian GP to go ahead minus McLaren.

McLaren has revealed that the staff member who tested positive for the coronavirus, ultimately leading to the Australian GP being cancelled, is “recovering well”.

McLaren brought the Australian GP to an abrupt end after a staff member spiked a fever after touching down in Melbourne.

Tested for the coronavirus, the unnamed team member recorded the first positive test in the F1 paddock.

The employee is said to be “recovering well” and is free of symptoms according to the BBC.

Following the positive test, McLaren withdrew from the grand prix with CEO Zak Brown revealing that was always going to be McLaren’s plan if one of their staff fell ill.

“[Team principal] Andreas [Seidl] and I had already agreed that if we had a positive test in the garage, there was only one option,” said Brown.

Aside from withdrewing from the grand prix, McLaren also took the decision to keep both Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris away from the rest of the team.

15 of McLaren’s staff remain in Melbourne under quarartine.

“They have been obviously concerned about their team-mates,” team boss Seidl said of his drivers.

“We have to keep them physically away from the rest of the team, even though they are both fine, but they are in constant communication.

“We also appreciate our fellow teams in the paddock, who offered immediate help on Friday to dismantle the garage and pack the freight, which was obviously a challenge for us missing 14 of our core guys.

“This is the spirit of F1 and racing we all embrace.”

The big question now is when will the 2020 Formula 1 season begin.

The sport’s bosses have spoke of “end of May” which would be the Monaco Grand Prix, however, to date only Australia, Bahrain, Vietnam and China have officially been postponed.

There has been no official word about the Dutch or Spanish GPs which are scheduled for early May.

Brown said: “It’s early days and this is an evolving situation but we are planning ahead and will stay flexible.

“We are focused on the dialogue with F1, the FIA and the other teams on working through the 2020 calendar and managing the team over the next few months.”

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