Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton tested positive for coronavirus, just days after winning the Bahrain Grand Prix.
The 35-year-old British driver has had mild symptoms according to his Mercedes team, and had to isolate him in a hotel for 10 days, which resulted in him being disqualified from the upcoming Sakhir Grand Prix.
This comes after Hamilton celebrated winning the championship on November 15 by heading to Monaco to celebrate with his family.
He shared footage of him running along the beach and also posted a video of him playing tennis with his father.
Upon moving to Instagram, Hamilton joked that the couple were trying to get better before he tagged Serena Williams, asking for advice.
Yesterday, Hamilton developed mild symptoms from the Coronavirus and returned two positive tests.
The seven-time world champion, set to take a knighthood on the New Year’s Honor Roll, has not missed Formula One since his debut in the sport in 2007.
Lewis Hamilton has tested positive for the coronavirus and has had mild symptoms since Monday
Hamilton won his seventh Formula 1 title on November 15 and the next day, he pictured himself walking along the beach and saying he was “happy and grateful.”
On November 22, Hamilton posted a video on Instagram of him playing tennis with his father and revealing how they are working hard to improve the sport.
Tuesday’s Formula 1 statement said: “ The FIA Team, Formula One and Mercedes can today confirm that during the mandatory pre-race PRC testing of the Sakhir Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton has tested positive for Covid-19.
According to Covid-19 protocols, he is now doing isolation. All communications announced. The measures put in place by the FIA and Formula 1 will ensure that there is no wider impact on this weekend’s event.
Mercedes added in a statement of its own: “ Lewis has been tested three times last week and has returned with a negative result each time, the most recent of which was on Sunday at the Bahrain International Circuit as part of the standard race test program at the weekend.
However, he woke up on Monday morning with mild symptoms and was informed at the same time that a caller before arriving in Bahrain had subsequently tested positive.
So Lewis took an additional test and returned a positive result. This has since been confirmed by retesting.
Lewis is now isolating according to Covid-19 protocols. Aside from mild symptoms, he is fit and in good health, and the whole team sends him best wishes for a speedy recovery.
Hamilton looked exhausted at the end of the Bahrain Grand Prix, which was marred by a collision that left Roman Grosjean lightly burned to the hands and ankles after his car crashed and caught fire moments after the start.
“It’s my body, this track has always been physical. We have a lot of high-speed corners so I definitely felt it,” Hamilton said after Sunday’s race. “I used to wander around there and not quite sure how things would ultimately turn out.”
The 35-year-old has retook two positive tests and is now in isolation
Hamilton, who finished his seventh world championship in Turkey last month, is the third driver to contract the disease.
Sergio Perez missed the British Grand Prix and 70th anniversary in Silverstone in August, while his Racing Point teammate Lance Stroll also tested positive after the Eiffel Grand Prix in October in Germany.
Hamilton won the Bahrain Grand Prix at the weekend, his eleventh victory of 2020, in a race that will be best remembered for Roman Grosjean’s brilliant escape from a fireball hell.
His positive test and withdrawal means that he will lose the combined record equivalent of Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel for the most wins in a year – which he could have achieved by winning the last two rounds in Bahrain next Sunday and in the season – scheduled in Abu Dhabi on December 13th.
He will need to retake a negative test before he is clear to participate in the final race of the cause.
Hamilton tested three times around the Bahrain Grand Prix last weekend – all of them negative
Hamilton is the third Formula 1 driver to test positive for Covid-19
Hamilton’s diagnosis means he will lose a record of wins in one year – Michael Schumacher set the number 13 and is matched by Sebastian Vettel
In July, Hamilton faced public criticism and had to clarify his views after he shared an anti-extremism post on his Instagram account.
Hamilton shared a post indicating Bill Gates was lying when talking about coronavirus vaccine trials with 18.3 million followers. A clip from Gates providing reassurances about vaccinations was captioned, “I remember when I told my first lie.”
Hamilton deleted the video and posted a statement saying he did not see the comment attached to the clip, but wanted to show the “uncertainty about the side effects” of vaccines.
He said: “I noticed some comments on my previous post about the Coronavirus vaccine, and I want to clarify my thoughts on it, because I understand why it was misinterpreted.”
Firstly, I didn’t actually see the attached comment, which is totally my fault and I have a lot of respect for the philanthropic work of Bill Gates.
I also want to be clear that I am not against a vaccine and undoubtedly it will be important in the fight against Coronavirus, and I hope it will be developed to save lives.
But after watching the video, I felt it showed that there was still a lot of uncertainty about the side effects, and more importantly, how it would be funded. I may not always get my correct posts. I am only human but I am learning as we go forward.
Sunday’s race will be the first race missed by Hamilton since his debut in the 2007 season opener in Australia.
Mercedes has yet to confirm who will replace the Englishman at Sunday’s Grand Prix at the Bahrain International Circuit outside circuit.
Reserve Mercedes driver Stoffel Vandoorne, formerly from McLaren, is competing, while the world champion may also turn to British driver George Russell.
Russell, 22, is in his second season with Williams, but is a member of the Mercedes Young Drivers Program.
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