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Formula 1 paddock will be 'one of the safest places' - Brawn

Formula 1 paddock will be 'one of the safest places' - Brawn

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Formula 1 paddock will be 'one of the safest places' - Brawn

Formula 1 paddock will be 'one of the safest places' - Brawn

Formula 1 believes a grand prix paddock could be one of the safest places once racing finally gets underway.

The revelation has come from Zak Brown after the McLaren CEO imparted details of a telephone call he had last week with F1's managing director of motorsports Ross Brawn, who made the comment.

With F1 aiming for a July 5 start in Austria, it is at present attempting to put strict protocols in place to ensure a locked-down paddock is safe as possible from potential COVID-19 infection.

Referring to his conversation with Brawn, Brown told SkySports F1: "I talked to Ross Brawn at length and his comment, which I agree with is that if we handle this right, one of the safest places to be might be at a grand prix.

"The testing will be immense, the protocols will be immense, the social distancing, but you will still probably be thrown a curveball if we are going to do 15 races around the world. We're going to have something that happens, so it's all about being prepared."

It was the preparation that stood McLaren in good stead ahead of the eventually cancelled Australian Grand Prix in mid-March after a team member tested positive, leading to the team's withdrawal.

As for what followed, with F1 and the remaining teams embroiled in a 'shall we-shan't we' scenario over whether to continue, Brown concedes it should have been handled better.

"All you can do is be really prepared, think through all the scenarios," added Brown.

"We were very prepared heading into Australia. We knew exactly what we were going to do in different circumstances, and we just acted against that.

"I think as an industry, collectively we weren't that prepared, and I think that showed by the crisis meeting on Thursday night, a split between the teams, fans queueing up on Friday, some teams at the track, some drivers on the plane.

"That wasn't very well choreographed. That wasn't one of Formula 1's finer moments."

Brown would like to believe F1 has learned severe lessons from what transpired in Melbourne.

"The discussions are deep and thorough within the industry, then you've got to work with each individual government, with each promoter, so I think we're much more prepared," insisted Brown.

"There's a tonne of caution on how we are going to go racing, to be prepared for some incidents, and try and isolate to where if someone has COVID, it doesn't shut the whole thing down because the chances of someone having it [are] probably fairly high.

"Fortunately, it's a pretty healthy, youthful environment, which by watching the news that kind of tells you that it's a little bit of a safer crowd. [Although] I don't think there are any guarantees around that."

Before you go...

Vettel not top of Mercedes' driver line-up options for 2021 - Wolff

"Detoxed" Alonso "motivated" again to return to Formula 1

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