Wolff on how Mercedes protects Hamilton and Bottas from COVID-19

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

After two Mercedes F1 team members tested positive for COVID-19, concerns about the safety of their drivers were obviously raised.

At the Eifel Grand Prix Toto Wolff was asked what safety procedures the team had in place to combat the spread of COVID-19.

“Yeah, so we are testing constantly back in Brackley,” said the Austrian.

“Everybody tested between Monday and Wednesday and there was not a single positive case.

“And then when we arrived we did a second test and one person was tested positive and was obviously quarantined and everyday around him that was in the car or worked with him also got quarantined and they had the second test now that is negative.

“And then we had a second positive test and also everybody who was around him was put in quarantine. We flew six people in from the UK; they were all tested.

“It’s certainly not a good situation because every person is very important but I guess this is something that is going to follow us for quite a while.”

Wolff was then asked which side of the garage does the loss of these particular team members impact the most.

“Well, every loss of an important member in the garage affects the race,” the Mercedes boss said.

“But I think we have got it under control by having back up back in Brackley and they came and in that respect I think we should be in control of that situation.”

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Finally Wolff explained how the team protects its drivers from contracting COVID-19.

“Obviously the drivers are the most restricted of the whole group, of the whole team. Certainly not a great situation for them because you almost need to live like a hermit and that’s what they are doing.

“They are at home. They are not going out for dinners. They are not meeting any other people. Within the team we do the debriefs via Zoom or Microsoft Teams.

“They are not sitting with the engineers in the room. They are sitting in their own rooms and we are avoiding as much as possible any personal contact with them.

“And we try to do it as literally stepping into the car and keeping their distance as we belt them in and then drive.

“Because, as you say, that is really critical for the championship, if you miss a race or two.

“So, unfortunately for them, they need to live a life that is a bit secluded but we think the decisions we have taken are good and protect them,” concluded the Austrian.

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