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Bottas and Leclerc face COVID-19 rebuke

NEWS STORY
09/07/2020

Valtteri Bottas and Charles Leclerc and their respective teams are facing an official warning for appearing to break the strict rules on COVID-19.

Article 3.14 of the FIA's Covid-19 Code of Conduct, which has been included in the International Sporting Code, states that: "Any time that Profile 1 Attendees spend outside the Venue during a Covered Event or between Covered Events (eg at a hotel) must be spent with other members of the same Group, keeping interaction with persons outside that Group to a minimum."

It adds that "where the Covid-19 delegate considers that a stakeholder has deliberately or seriously or repeatedly breached the Covid-19 Code the Covid-19 delegate shall submit a report to the stewards."

However, while most drivers, including world champion, Lewis Hamilton remained on site following last weekend's race, Bottas and Leclerc both returned to their homes in Monaco.

The Finn subsequently posted picture of himself and friends dining out in Monaco, while Leclerc shared pictures of himself with friends and fans. Indeed, one pictured the Ferrari star not wearing a face mask. While Bottas remained within his bubble, it was clear that Leclerc didn't.

"Obviously I found out if it's allowed to go back, and yes it is," Bottas told reporters today. "Of course, it doesn't make a difference if I stay with the same people in the same bubble, whether I'm here or back home in Monaco. So I decided to go back home, as we are in Europe and travelling is pretty short. So there's no extra stress really from the travel. I wanted to spend those three full days at home. I thought it was very nice, feeling very recharged for the weekend.

"I think it was a good decision from our side," he added, "and I understand what to do, what works for me, what I want to do between the races and from safety point of view, there's no difference at all. It's still the same people that I would be dealing with here."

"I did come back at home," said Leclerc. "On the other hand, I've been tested twice before coming back.

"So in two days, testing twice, both negative obviously," he added. "And that's it. Yes, I went back home for two days and then the two tests to be sure of the results."

It is likely that both drivers and their teams will face a stern rebuke from F1 and the FIA.

That said, it's worth noting that last Friday, FIA president took to social media to post a picture of himself with a number of FIA colleagues in Paris before the FIA Senate meeting. None were wearing masks and some were actually touching.

Todt subsequently attended the Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.

Check out our Thursday gallery from Spielberg, here.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Wokingchap, 10/07/2020 13:32

"We are surrounded by cheaters."

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2. Posted by zoom, 10/07/2020 1:25

"Masks for thee but not for me."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by F1nerd, 09/07/2020 23:04

"It appears to be "do as I say, not as I do""

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