Sainz fears missing F1 races due to asymptomatic cases of Covid-19

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Carlos Sainz admits he is concerned by the possibility of asymptomatic Covid-19 cases causing a team to miss a race.

This weekend will be the first race under Formula 1's new normal of testing every five days and 'bubbles' throughout the paddock and even without teams.

And commenting on the protocols put in place to allow the new F1 season to go ahead, McLaren team boss Andreas Seidl was very satisfied.

“I have to say I’m very happy with the plan that has been developed under the leadership of the FIA, gives us a clear regulation, clear procedure, of how we execute the weekend,” he was quoted by

“I think what is different now to Australia that we have a clear concept of isolation, of the teams, between each other.


“We [will] show up in Austria in these different groups and then separate groups within the team, so the policy is clear.

“If you develop symptoms we will immediately test a team member in the paddock plus for the close contacts as well, the members of this group, we should get the test result within a couple of hours on-site which then allows us to simply make a quick decision for what the next steps are.

“The approach is clear, if someone is positive, they need to be isolated from the team and can’t continue, but for everyone else who is negative we can simply keep going.

“We have back up personnel ready here in the UK fully tested as well, simply to be able to cope with different scenarios that could arise.”

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The McLaren chief though did concede there was still a small risk of positive cases infiltrating the paddock and it is the potential for the asymptomatic spread which most concerns Sainz.

“You might have Covid-19 and you don’t even know you have it and don’t even have symptoms or someone in the team doesn’t even have symptoms and they have it and you might miss a race because of that,” the Spaniard told CNN via Instagram Live.

“And after four months of not racing and of wanting to go racing, suddenly you are perfectly well and healthy but you have tested positive for Covid-19 so cannot race in Formula 1, after four months, it would be a horrible feeling and something that I want to take care of not happening.

“You might as well get it from pure bad luck and you can’t do anything against it, you just have to skip a couple of races because of that.

“But the worst part of it would be to feel perfect, feel like you feel now, have Covid-19 in your system or in your blood, and not being able to race.”