Toto Wolff: ‘Lewis is OK, he has symptoms, but they are mild’

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff gives an update on Lewis Hamilton’s condition and says there is a chance he will race in Abu Dhabi.

Earlier this week Lewis Hamilton tested positive for COVID-19 and after one social media post, he has remained silent. Toto Wolff was asked if he expects Lewis to follow the action on the track.

“His priority now is to getting healthy,” said the Austrian.

“I’m not sure he’s going to follow in detail what is happening on track. If you’re in bed and not feeling great, racing becomes a second priority.”

The question of where Lewis contracted the virus will probably never be answered, but some are saying it could have happened during his trip to Dubai to spend time with his family ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix. However none of Lewis’ relatives tested positive.

Wolff was asked if Lewis had permission to leave his “bubble” and go to Dubai.

“Lewis doesn’t need to have any permission,” Wolff said.

“He rides anything he wants, he jumps out of any airplane he wants, because he knows best what is good for him. He is a grown-up man, and this was never an issue.

“I think contracting COVID-19 is something that we are all not very sure where you get it. If you ask Mario [Isola] where he got it, he is probably not going to know where, and it’s just unfortunate.

“He was protecting himself a lot, and then you go to Dubai, wear your mask all the time and come back with corona. These things happen.”

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Asked if Lewis could return in time for the final race in Abu Dhabi, Wolff said it was possible.

“We’ve seen tests were negative within 10 days so that is perfectly feasible in my opinion, but it would be a very positive development.

“Nevertheless you need to look at the situation anyway because there are many athletes in sports out there that have tested positive for a long time after any symptoms and after being any way infectious.

“So it’s something the FIA needs to look into anyway.”

Wolff also confirmed that Lewis’ symptoms are mild and he is feeling “ok”.

“He’s recovering, the first few days are always critical once you catch coronavirus. He’s OK, he has symptoms, but they are relatively mild.”

One more thing that still needs to be settled before the end of the season is Lewis’ contact extension, but it’s going to have to wait until the champ is feeling better.

“The timeline is being pushed back until he recovers,” explained Wolff.

“We know that we need to get it done, pretty well aware both of us. The priority now is him getting back on his feet and being back negative, and then we will meet or Zoom in order to put pen to paper.”

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