Ricciardo tests positive for Covid, Norris to continue testing for McLaren

2022 F1 season

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McLaren have announced that Daniel Ricciardo has tested positive for Covid-19 in Bahrain and will not participate in the final day of testing.

Ricciardo had been scheduled to run at the start of the second test on Thursday in Bahrain but was replaced by team mate Lando Norris after he began feeling unwell on Wednesday afternoon. Despite returning several negative Covid tests over Thursday, McLaren confirmed that Ricciardo had returned a positive PCR test for the coronavirus.

Under Bahrain quarantine rules, Ricciardo should be able to race in the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix next weekend if he recovers in time.

In a statement, McLaren announced Norris would run a third consecutive full day in the MCL36 to conclude the Bahrain test.

“McLaren Racing can confirm that after feeling unwell from Wednesday onwards in Bahrain, Daniel Ricciardo has now returned a positive PCR test for Covid-19,” the statement read. “Daniel is therefore continuing to isolate in accordance with local regulations.

“Under these regulations Daniel will be released in time for next weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix. Daniel is already beginning to feel better, and we wish him well for a quick recovery.

“Following this, we can confirm that Lando Norris will remain in the MCL36 for the final day of the official pre-season test in Bahrain tomorrow.”

In a post on social media, Ricciardo said that his physical condition was already beginning to improve.

“Unfortunate to miss the test, but I’m starting to feel better,” he said. “I’ll stay isolated and just focus on next weekend.

“Big thanks to Lando and McLaren for the heavy lifting, I owe you some beers (milk for Lando). Appreciate the well wishes from everyone.”

Ricciardo completed a full day of testing in Barcelona, followed by a half day of running on the final day. In total, he has covered 212 laps of the Circuit de Catalunya in McLaren’s new car built to the radical new technical regulations for the 2022 season.

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Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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  • 24 comments on “Ricciardo tests positive for Covid, Norris to continue testing for McLaren”

    1. “It’s not Covid.”

      “It’s not Covid!”

      “It’s Covid.”

      1. They said he’d tested negative for covid. Which I took to mean that he had symptoms consistent with covid (otherwise why bother mentioning it).

        Hopefully we all know by now that the lateral flow/antigen tests don’t pick up the early stages of an infection, so it’s not hugely surprising to find out that he has now tested positive on the more sensitive PCR tests.

        Get well soon Daniel.

        1. Please stop with the bs! How many times does that absurd claim have to be debunked. For anyone interested or curious about this do look it up. The only con here is people trying to convince others that Kary Mullis denounced the PCR test ineffective. Stop spreading garbage.

        2. At least try to spell the name right if you’re going to spread thoroughly debunked hogwash.

        3. That’ll be the same PCR tests that the CDC in the USA have recommended not to be used since January as they pick up ANY coronavirus. If you keep testing eventually you’ll find something it seems.
          Whatever, get well soon DR

    2. Wonder if he has an “A” blood-type. I presume he’s triple-vaccinated, so curious as to why he seems to be having strong symptoms (apparently?).

    3. It’s better now than going through this when the season starts. I hope he’s in full health when he returns next weekend.

    4. Assuming he will recover in time for next weekend’s race, this may not be a terrible thing for Ricciardo. A Covid infection must be a serious worry for any driver, especially those who hope to compete for the championship. Getting infected this close to the start of the season will hopefully see him through for the rest of the year.

    5. Well thank goodness they have told us what it is.
      I was starting to think the worst.

      Best wishes and get better quick Dan ;)

      1. @nullapax

        Yes, I was also worried about Athlete’s Mouth.

    6. Bad luck, I doubt he is the last driver to get it this season. These guys are around so many people it is kind of surprising more drivers haven’t had Covid.

      1. Isolation, masks, and vaccines. The vaccine was really really effective with every strain other than omnicron. I think the fact. But the fact that so few people in F1 caught covid considering how much they are around others, is some more anecdotal proof (on top of the scientific proof) that the measures to protect against COVID-19 were very effective.

        Let’s hope Danny recovers quickly and that he can race in Bahrain.

        Who is Mclaren’s reserve driver anyway? I know they shared with Merc before, but it doesn’t seem to be the case anymore

        1. @ajpennypacker We will see now how those measures work since the paddock seems a llt more relaxed now, two days ago the drivers including Ricciardo got together for that No War photo maskless. Hope the others stay uninfected and Ric recovers soon.

          Di Resta was their reserve driver last year, although there are currently no reserve drivers named on their website
          Will Stevens and Oliver Turvey are their longstanding test amd simulator drivers, although I doubt they would be called up.

        2. Nothing has been said yet that I have heard, so if it isn’t the same as 2021 (using Mercedes substitute drivers Nyck de Vries or Stoffel Vandoorne), they also have their test driver Oliver Turvey and Will Stevens in the wings.

        3. Remember, the reserve driver never gets the drive…

          He hasn’t missed much this week – ironically it’s his speciality, braking issues – but I hope he’s back fighting fit. Race 1’s still a big opportunity, he won’t be the only driver with a struggle on his hands.

    7. Not really what DR needed as he tries to up his game this season vs last, but I’m sure he’ll get up to speed soon enough. Poor Lando’s neck after all that driving he’ll have had to do this test.

      1. With the lack of running due to the brake problems, (un?)fortunately his neck should be fine.

        1. @hunocsi Oh yeah, true.

    8. Somewhat unsurprising in the end. Luckily for him, the required isolation period doesn’t last through next weekend.

    9. RocketTankski
      11th March 2022, 21:06

      This is a man who drinks out of a sweaty shoe for fun. He’ll kick Covid and be back on track in no time.

    10. Better now than later, I suppose. I hope he’s feeling 100% again soon.

    11. As someone got it the week before this one (and i was vaccinated I only noticed as i didn’t tast anymore then i became sick… heavy cold luckly but tested positive when my cold started.) today was the first day i tested negative again still i have a little cold but getting beter. So after 8 days the test came negative again. Still i take a extra day before seeing someone.

      1. @macleod Hope you feel back to normal very soon!

        1. @willwood Thank you for kind words. Two day later and i have only a little ikking feeling in my throat left. (and more important all negative tests)
          I think we can say it’s over so i felt only sick the first 2-3 days.

    Comments are closed.