The race is set to be a nail-biter against Max Verstappen, 23, after a collision between the two in the British GP resulted in a ten-second penalty for Hamilton. The Seven-time Formula One world champion missed the Sakhir Grand Prix at the end of last year after showing mild symptoms and testing positive for Coronavirus. This meant he had to withdraw from racing in Bahrain but recovered in time for the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi where he finished the overall season in third place. Lewis Hamilton told the BBC after his return: “I am destroyed. I do not feel good. Covid is no joke. I never thought it was.
“I knew at some stage if I got it it would be tough because there are people out there losing their lives. So I knew it was serious.”
When asked if he was still feeling the effects of coronavirus he added: “Physically, massively. I don’t think I’ve ever been so blown. My body’s not feeling pretty good.
“To be able to come back here this weekend, I knew I wouldn’t physically be where I have been the rest of the season but I made it.
He continued: “Where there is a will, there is a way. I look on the bright side; I made it through.
“I didn’t think any time last week that I’d be here, so I’m just really, really grateful for my health and to be alive.”
Hamilton was one of six drivers to test positive for Coronavirus in the F1 2020 season.
The season was initially suspended in March 2020, then set up a series of protocols to maintain social distancing measures.
Hamilton admitted it was one of the most difficult years, as life was just not normal.
Current symptoms of Coronavirus include:
- A high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
Coronavirus is still effecting the sport, with the F1 2021 calendar going through some major shake-ups.
This includes the Australian GP being cancelled and the Turkey GP replacing the Singapore GP.
The latest British Grand Prix which took place at Silverstone on July 18th allowed a full-capacity crowd following the inclusion of the event in the UK Government’s Event Research Programme.
However, all ticket holders were asked for either proof of a negative lateral flow test taken within 48 hours prior to arrival, or proof of a full vaccination, the second dose having been received 14 days prior to arrival.
After 11 races so far, Hamilton ranks second behind Red Bull driver Max Verstappen.
The tension between the two is greater than ever this year after Formula 1 rejected Red Bull’s hopes of getting Hamilton’s ten second penalty reassessed.
After a first-lap collision which saw Verstappen eliminated from the race, Hamilton was deemed “predominantly to blame.”
Despite it’s best efforts under the FIA’s rules in the International Sporting Code stated Red Bull needed to bring a “significant and relevant new element” to the stewards for the governing body to be convinced there was a case to look at.
Despite the decision Verstappen is still eight points ahead of Hamilton, in the championship heading into this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix, the last before a three-week summer break for F1.