Charles Leclerc is the latest Formula 1 driver to test positive for Covid-19 ahead of the 2021 Formula 1 season.
In a statement, Ferrari said that the Monegasque driver produced a positive result during the team’s routine testing protocol and was now self-isolating at home in Monaco.
Leclerc said in a social media post that he was ok but was suffering from mild symptoms. Ferrari added in its own statement that those who have had close contact with Leclerc in the team have been notified.
In a social media post, Leclerc said that he was now at home observing his self-isolation period in line with local guidelines.
“I want to let you know that I have tested positive for Covid-19. I am regularly checked according to my team’s protocols.
“Unfortunately, I learned that I have been in contact with a positive case and immediately went into self-isolation, notifying anyone I had contact with.
“A subsequent test I took has come back positive. I am feeling ok and have mild symptoms. I will remain in isolation in my home in Monaco in compliance with the regulations set by the local health authorities.”
Leclerc is the fifth driver to test positive since the start of the pandemic. Sergio Perez, Lance Stroll and Lewis Hamilton each missed at least one race at various stages of last year’s F1 season as a result.
It also means that a quarter of the F1 grid has now caught the virus. Leclerc is the second F1 driver to test positive in 2021 following Lando Norris’ result earlier this month while on holiday in Dubai.
The McLaren driver was in the UAE ahead of planned training camp before travelling for pre-season testing, now set to begin in Bahrain in March.
Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow driver Charles Leclerc has tested positive for COVID-19.
In accordance with the team’s protocols, Charles is tested regularly and yesterday, the result from his latest test came back positive. [1/2]
— Scuderia Ferrari (@ScuderiaFerrari) January 14, 2021
The venue for testing was moved over concerns teams would not be able to enter Spain if government guidelines change and prevent travel into the country from abroad.
With the postponement of the Australian and Chinese Grands Prix, teams agreed to move testing to the Sakhir International Circuit two weeks ahead of the opening round of the season.