A major scare has been sent through Daniel Ricciardo’s F1 team after it was confirmed McLaren CEO Zak Brown has tested positive to Covid-19 on the eve of the British Grand Prix.
McLaren announced the shock news in a statement on its website.
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“McLaren Racing confirmed today that three team members, including CEO Zak Brown, tested positive for Covid-19 during the team’s rigorous testing program before the British Grand Prix,” the statement said.
“Neither of our drivers are close contacts.
“All three cases are unconnected and now isolating in accordance with government guidelines. “The team’s operations for the British Grand Prix are unaffected.”
On Thursday night (AEST), Brown said in a tweet he is isolating and will be following along the action at the British Grand Prix on Sunday night (AEST) from his home.
Following our team’s pre-event testing for the British GP, I’ve tested positive for covid-19. I’ve notified all my close contacts and isolating in accordance with govt guidelines. I’ll still be connected to and supporting the team safely from home. https://t.co/XZ4YxmfAtK
Crucially, neither Ricciardo or Lando Norris were close contacts of Brown’s, meaning they will be free to race this weekend at Silverstone without concern.
The British Grand Prix will be the first race this season with a capacity crowd in attendance.
Around 140,000 fans are expected to be trackside in a major test of the UK’s management of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Brown has been vocal about his disappointment in Ricciardo’s first season with McLaren since moving from Renault.
McLaren CEO Zak Brown has tested positive to Covid-10 on the eve of the British Grand Prix. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images
The Australian’s best result this year is sixth place and a podium finish appears well out of reach for the time being.
Brown said he had hoped Ricciardo would come to grips with his McLaren much faster.
“We are surprised and disappointed as he is at how long it’s taking him to get up to speed,” he said before the Styrian Grand Prix last month.
“We have just got to keep working hard at it. In France he had a good run, in Spain he had a good run, so we know it’s there.
“It shows how good Lando (Norris) is – which doesn’t surprise us, but maybe he has surprised a few people this year just how fast he is.”
Brown is looking for more consistency from Ricciardo.
“Daniel has done it then had some off weekends, so it just shows he is still getting comfortable with the car.
“But you don’t win seven grands prix by accident, so we’ve got a lot of confidence once he gets in that zone he’ll be fine.”
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