Bottas escapes action for possible COVID protocol breach

Valtteri Bottas has been given the all-clear by the FIA for not breaking Formula 1’s social bubble rules when he returned home to Monaco after the Austrian GP.

Bottas escapes action for possible COVID protocol breach

The Finn and his Ferrari rival Charles Leclerc were under investigation by the FIA’s COVID-19 delegate to see if they had breached the Code of Conduct when they travelled back home after the first Red Bull Ring race.

While there is no restriction on where F1 drivers and personnel can travel to between events, everyone attending closed-door races is required to stick within their strict sub groups to minimise the chance of an infection spreading.

After looking at evidence of what the two drivers did between the races, the FIA concluded that Leclerc’s actions in meeting friends outside of the Ferrari bubble may have broken the rules.

A letter was sent to Ferrari urging it to ensure that everyone within the team followed the Code of Conduct. With a similar warning having been sent last week after Sebastian Vettel spoke without a mask to Red Bull’s Christian Horner and Helmut Marko in the paddock, it has been made clear that any further breaches could result in a stewards hearing being called.

On the Bottas front, the FIA was satisfied that the Mercedes driver had not been in close contact with anyone outside his social bubble, and had undergone the required testing, so the governing body decided that no similar letter was required to be sent to his Mercedes team.

The FIA is acting tough on ensuring that the coronavirus protocols are followed as much as possible, despite the near 10,000 tests conducted on F1 personnel over the two weeks in Austria having not thrown up a single positive result so far.

Read Also:

McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl said on Friday morning that he felt it important F1 did teams did not start taking things for granted after the success of the first Austria weekend.

“I think it's simply important to make sure that even after this first race, which really worked out very well in terms of the measures that are in place, that we don't get complacent or feel too safe,” he said.

“I can only speak for McLaren. Both drivers stayed here, together with me as well. What happened in other teams I cannot really judge.”

shares
comments
Honda "surprised" by Mercedes progress during lockdown
Previous article

Honda "surprised" by Mercedes progress during lockdown

Next article

Horner gives "definite no" to Vettel return to Red Bull

Horner gives "definite no" to Vettel return to Red Bull
How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future Prime

How departing F1 boss Brawn views F1’s new rules - and the future

Multiple-title-winning designer and team boss Ross Brawn is finally leaving Formula 1 after nearly 50 years in motorsport. But he still has plenty of insights on what’s working and what comes next, as he revealed to Motorsport.com in a far-reaching exclusive interview in Abu Dhabi.

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat Prime

The key F1 management call Ferrari must make to avoid more defeat

OPINION: Mattia Binotto’s departure from Ferrari will naturally bring a range of changes across the Formula 1 team. But how the changes shape up and the impact they could have is set to be dictated by a key direction Ferrari’s top dogs will need to pick

Formula 1
Nov 30, 2022
The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants Prime

The difference between Mercedes’ stumble and the fall of F1 giants

OPINION: Mercedes endured its worst season of the hybrid Formula 1 era, but was mercifully spared its first winless campaign in over a decade late on. It has owned up to the mistakes it made which led to its troubled W13. And while its task to return to title-challenging contention is not small, its 2022 season seems more like a blip than the beginning of a downward spiral.

Formula 1
Nov 29, 2022
The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon Prime

The physical focus bringing out the best from Esteban Ocon

Esteban Ocon likes to point out he’s the first driver since Lewis Hamilton to emerge from a spell as Fernando Alonso’s teammate with a superior overall points record. While some may disagree, as LUKE SMITH discovered, the 2021 Hungarian GP winner reckons it’s not just luck which has made him France’s pre-eminent Formula 1 driver of the moment…

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2022
How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy Prime

How Red Bull's dynamic leader Mateschitz shaped its F1 philosophy

The death of Dietrich Mateschitz last month has not only deprived Red Bull of its visionary founder, it has shorn Formula 1 of one of its most influential benefactors. Mateschitz himself was famously media-shy, preferring to let the brand do the talking on his behalf. And, while it’s now normal to speak of Red Bull F1 titles and champions made, Mateschitz never assumed it would be easy or even possible – as ANTHONY ROWLINSON discovered during this previously unpublished interview from 2006…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2022
Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom? Prime

Can Mercedes break Formula 1's cycle of doom?

OPINION: Teams that have dominated for long periods throughout Formula 1's history often take years to get back to the top of the tree once they've slipped down. But it remains to be seen whether the same will happen to Mercedes after a challenging 2022 season

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2022
What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi Prime

What hurt Perez most in his ill-fated fight for second in Abu Dhabi

Arguably the favourite in the battle to finish second-best in 2022's Formula 1 standings, Sergio Perez's two-stop strategy at Abu Dhabi couldn't take him ahead of Charles Leclerc when the music stopped - and several key factors ultimately precluded him from the much-coveted runner-up spot.

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2022
The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success Prime

The Abu Dhabi momentum that can propel Leclerc and Ferrari to F1 2023 success

OPINION: Charles Leclerc achieved his target of sealing runner-up in the 2022 world championship with a masterful drive behind Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi. And that race contained key elements that may help him, and Ferrari, go one better in Formula 1 2023

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2022