Hamilton, Ricciardo and Co react to cancellation

Mark Scott
Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton says it is disappointing and Daniel Ricciardo is devastated, but all drivers are seemingly in agreement that the right decision was made to cancel the Australian Grand Prix.

The coronavirus has had its first direct impact on the Formula 1 paddock after a McLaren team member tested positive.

That resulted in their immediate withdrawal from the season opener. Not so immediate was Formula 1’s decision to cancel the race.

Now that official confirmation has come through, the 2020 grid have been reacting to the news.

“Sadly, this is the right decision,” Hamilton said via Instagram.

“No one wants this, we all want to get in our cars and get racing, but we have to be realistic and we must put health and safety first.

“The reality is, this is serious with people dying every day, lots of people ill and even if they are not ill, many people are being affected financially and emotionally.

“No one really knows the extent of what we are dealing with, but we should all take precautions to keep as many people safe as possible.

“I know it’s disappointing, as sport unites us when times are tough, but it’s the right call.

“Listen to the advice, everyone, and keep safe. Hope to be back racing soon, but in the meantime, take care of yourselves.”

Other drivers communicated by Twitter in the wake of the cancellation announcement, including home favourite Daniel Ricciardo.

Racing Point’s Sergio Perez said: “We arrived in Australia with great enthusiasm, after so much preparation sadly we are not going to start the season.

“But now the most important thing is everyone’s health, we must be aware and take all the measures that are within our reach. A lot of strength for everyone and let’s take good care of ourselves!”

Pierre Gasly added: “Stay safe everyone, and let’s hope this whole COVID-19 situation gets better soon. Shame we can’t race here in Australia, but keeping everybody health and safety is priority. Was really looking forward to start the season, but we will have to wait. Lets hope for better news soon.”

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