Stroll: I didn’t get tested because I didn’t think I had Covid

2020 Portuguese Grand Prix

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Lance Stroll defended his decision not to have a Covid-19 test immediately after pulling out of the Eifel Grand Prix weekend.

The Racing Point driver pulled out of the event on Saturday morning but did not have himself tested until after he had flown home to Switzerland the following day. He revealed yesterday that test came back positive.

“I have no idea how I contracted it,” said Stroll. “I flew back to Switzerland where I got tested Sunday evening and my father got tested as well and we both tested positive that Sunday evening in Switzerland.” Stroll said his father, Racing Point owner Lawrence Stroll, is also recovering well following his positive test.

During today’s FIA press conference Stroll was repeatedly asked about the extent of the symptoms he experienced at the Nurburgring. Racing Point CEO Otmar Szafnauer previously indicated Stroll experienced flu-like symptoms, which are among those which are considered indicative of Covid-19.

Stroll said he had an “upset stomach” and did not elaborate further on his symptoms. “I had an upset stomach and I’m not going to get into details of what that contains, what that means,” he said.

He discussed his condition with a private doctor over the phone on Saturday. “I had an upset stomach,” he said. “I spoke to my private physician who didn’t think it was Covid.

“And therefore I flew home the next day, knowing I wasn’t going to race, and I got my general Covid test that I get on a Sunday evening after a race weekend.”

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However Stroll admitted that in retrospect he should have been tested on Saturday. “Hindsight’s a beautiful thing,” he said. “At the time I didn’t know I had Covid, I didn’t think I had Covid.

“Like I said I had the same symptoms from Russia, I wasn’t feeling well, I had an upset stomach and I tested negative twice. In Germany I had an upset stomach so I didn’t assume it was Covid.

“In hindsight, yes, I had Covid at that time and I should have got tested. Like I said I spoke to my doctor, we came to the conclusion that we didn’t think it was Covid and therefore I got my usual test.

“I came into the weekend, tested negative and was cleared to race. My next scheduled test was Sunday evening at the end of the weekend and I stuck to that plan with the conclusion, speaking to my doctor, that it wasn’t Covid.”

Stroll has since tested negative and returned to the paddock. “I’m feeling good,” he said. “My symptoms were very mild. I didn’t really struggle so I’m happy to be back and looking forward to the weekend.”

He said the virus hasn’t affected his preparation for the race. “I obviously self-isolated and I didn’t really exercise for the most part of that.

“Towards the end when I started to feel better I started to get back into a little bit and just do some stuff at home: Some strength work and I had a stationary bike I jumped on just to get the body going and the system going again.

“Since I tested negative on Monday, I’ve been starting up my cardio again and I feel good, I feel like I’m in great shape and I look forward to getting in the car tomorrow.”

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2020 Portuguese Grand Prix

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    14 comments on “Stroll: I didn’t get tested because I didn’t think I had Covid”

    1. Spoilt brat thinks he’s not accountable?

      1. These comments are getting tiring… He’s not the first pay driver, he won’t be the last and he surely isn’t the worst. Get over it.

        I’d rather have a pay driver and one more team on the grid than seeing the grid reduced to 18 cars.

        1. Jose Lopes da Silva
          22nd October 2020, 16:16

          Notable, humble, gracious and superb Formula One Driver thinks he’s not accountable?

        2. @paeschli tiring though they are, the problem is that you’re trying to reason with somebody who cannot be reasoned with – they’ve decided on their prejudices and will stick to them come what may. Quite a lot of people have decided to fixate on using Stroll as a convenient figure they can take their own frustrations out on, and their behaviour often only reinforces those traits.

          1. Well, reading a lot of your remarks here there is a pattern developing regarding a certain driver.
            So, its not Stroll ( which you feel you should protect) but rather someone talented and deserving his pay.
            Strange new worlds…

          2. Jose Lopes da Silva
            23rd October 2020, 10:35

            You’re absolutely right. I have a strong frustration regarding this sport, because in the nineties I naively believed that pay drivers were a just signal of a sport still developing but in the future it would become a stronger meritocracy just like football, where you can’t reach the top just by being the owner’s son. The sport has reached a professional level during the last decades but now it is quickly returning to a gentlemen’s hobby, like it was in the fifties. So yes, I “fixate” on Stroll and the next one is Mazepin. Latifi is not as serious as Stroll, although I’m not quite sure if he can be fired.

            My frustration is because I love this sport but it’s not changing in a way I dislike. My problem alone, of course.

            But the most saddening part is that a blatant health disrespect from this guy gets 10 comments while the latest news about the cultural civil war that is ongoing in the Western world gets 125 comments.

      2. I told all you punks that I will keep posting “inb4 anti-Stroll comments” every year.

    2. He had mild symptoms, but they did keep him from driving in fp3. That’s a bit strange to me. I would only call symptoms mild if they do not keep me from doing my work.

      1. @mosquito The way I read it he had mild Covid symptoms after the race weekend. During the weekend he had an upset stomach which is what prevented him from racing.

          1. Yeaah but basically anything is a COVID symptom so, taking into account that he a) gets tested ALL.THE.TIME and b) presumably more or less stick to his bubble i do not think it is an unreasonable conclusion to think it is not COVID. Looks bad now ofc, but understandable if you think about it.

            1. But flu like symptoms are definitely a Covid trigger! And his team manager named those symptoms.

    3. I can understand his logic after reading the article, but still! I mean any form of sickness should immediately warrant a second test in this highly sensitive setting of a F1 paddock. Even if the symptoms may not be directly associated with covid.

    4. A virus so terrifying you have to get tested to know you have it.

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