Hamilton: "Shocking" that Australian GP is still on

World champion Lewis Hamilton says it is "shocking" that Formula 1 has gone ahead with the Australian Grand Prix amid the global coronavirus pandemic.

Hamilton: "Shocking" that Australian GP is still on

While governments around the world are imposing lockdowns in their countries, and other major sporting events have been cancelled, Hamilton says he is baffled about why the season opener has gone ahead.

“I am very, very surprised that we are here,” said Hamilton, when asked by Motorsport.com if he was comfortable with being at the grand prix.

“I think it's great that we have races, but for me it's shocking that we're all sitting in this room.

"So many fans here already today and it seems like the rest of the world is reacting, probably a little bit late, but already this morning we've seen [Donald] Trump shutting down the borders from Europe to the States. We are seeing the NBA being suspended, and F1 continues to go on.

“I saw Jackie Stewart this morning, looking fit and healthy and well, and some people as I walked into the paddock, some elderly individuals. So it's a concern for the people here. It's definitely concerning for me. So no is your answer.”

 

Read Also:

Pushed later on why he felt the race was going ahead amid growing concerns about safety, with five F1 personnel already being tested for coronavirus, Hamilton responded: “Cash is king, but honestly I don't know. I can't really add much.

“I don't feel like I should shy away from the fact of my opinion. The fact is we are here and I just urge everyone to really just be as careful as you can be in touching doors and surfaces. I hope everyone's got hand sanitizer, and really for the fans I really, really hope that they take precautions.

“I was walking through and seeing just everything going ahead as normal, like it's a normal day. So, I just hope all the fans stay safe, and I really hope we go through this weekend without seeing any fatalities.”

With Australian medical chiefs having said that they will have to quarantine any teams if a staff member is confirmed as having the virus, which could potentially force the grand prix to be abandoned, Hamilton suggested that potential delays in getting test results would help organisers as these would arrive after the race had run.

Asked if he felt the race should be called off if the tests are positive, he said: “It is not for me to make the decision. But I heard that the results are not going to come back for five days or something: coincidentally.”

shares
comments
Raikkonen: "Probably not right" for F1 to go ahead

Previous article

Raikkonen: "Probably not right" for F1 to go ahead

Next article

Gallery: All of Nico Rosberg's F1 race wins

Gallery: All of Nico Rosberg's F1 race wins
Load comments
The details that boosted Verstappen and held back Hamilton in Austin Prime

The details that boosted Verstappen and held back Hamilton in Austin

As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
US Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a baking hot afternoon in Texas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Prime

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment.

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Why a misunderstood Kimi Raikkonen will thrive in retirement Prime

Why a misunderstood Kimi Raikkonen will thrive in retirement

Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man Anthony Peacock explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it).

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
How Verstappen has become F1 champion material Prime

How Verstappen has become F1 champion material

As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
Why long-run times should please Red Bull in Austin F1 battle Prime

Why long-run times should please Red Bull in Austin F1 battle

Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be set to be another close contest.

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
The six critical factors that could hand F1 2021 glory to Hamilton or Verstappen Prime

The six critical factors that could hand F1 2021 glory to Hamilton or Verstappen

The 2021 Formula 1 title battle is finely poised with six races remaining, as just six points separate championship leader Max Verstappen from seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton. In such a closely-fought season, the outcome could hinge on several small factors playing the way of Red Bull or Mercedes

Formula 1
Oct 22, 2021
Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed? Prime

Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed?

Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll is determined to make the group a billion-dollar business. MARK GALLAGHER analyses his latest play – bringing former McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh into the fold

Formula 1
Oct 22, 2021