McLaren will have 14 team personnel in quarantine for the next 14 days after they came into close contact with a colleague who tested positive for the coronavirus at the Australian Grand Prix.
Tests for a team member showing symptoms of the virus on Wednesday returned a positive result on Thursday evening, leading to McLaren withdrawing from the season-opener in Melbourne. Following the cancellation of the race weekend, the team issued a further update confirming the quarantine situation.
“McLaren fully supports the decision taken by Formula 1, the FIA and the Australian Grand Prix Corporation to cancel the event,” the team statement read.
“Overnight, 14 members of the team, in addition to the one confirmed case, were placed in quarantine at the team hotel for 14 days, in accordance with local health authority directives. These are individuals who had been in close contact with the team member who tested positive for coronavirus. These individuals are being supported by senior team personnel, who will stay behind with them during the quarantine period.
“Any other team members who show symptoms will be tested immediately and self-isolate, in line with our protocol.
“Other members of the team have been cleared to return to the paddock to pack down team equipment before traveling back to the UK. On arrival in the UK, no race team member will return to the McLaren Technology Centre for a period of 14 days, as a precautionary measure.”
While no decision has been taken yet regarding next weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, the developments over the past 24 hours further increases the likelihood of its cancellation. At present the team members in quarantine would not be allowed home until the final weekend in March, with the Vietnam Grand Prix provisionally scheduled to take place on April 5.
The majority of teams are already packing down at Albert Park and changing flight itineraries to make the journey back to their respective headquarters as soon as possible.