Last year’s F1 championship was hit by the pandemic, with the planned opener in Australia cancelled after a McLaren team member tested positive.

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AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly said on Sunday he had tested positive for COVID-19, meaning six of Formula One’s 20 race drivers have now contracted the virus.

The 24-year-old Frenchman, who recently posted pictures on Instagram of training in Dubai, made the announcement on Twitter.

“I wanted to let you know that I tested positive for COVID-19. I have told everyone I’ve been in contact with during these last days,” he said on Twitter.

“I’m currently self-isolating and following the protocol set by the local health authorities. I’m feeling OK, and will continue to follow my training plan from home while I remain in isolation.”

Mexican Sergio Perez, Canadian Lance Stroll, seven times world champion Lewis Hamilton, McLaren’s Lando Norris and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc have all tested positive since the start of the pandemic.

Norris and Leclerc tested positive after also spending time in Dubai post-season.

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, Williams principal Simon Roberts and Aston Martin team owner Lawrence Stroll as well as Pirelli tyre boss Mario Isola have also had the virus.

The season starts in Bahrain on March 28.

Last year’s championship was hit by the pandemic, with the planned opener in Australia cancelled after a McLaren team member tested positive.

The sport eventually got started in July with teams operating in ‘bubbles’ and under a strict safety protocol with the paddock closed to all but essential staff.

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