A driver testing positive for the COVID-19 virus ahead of this weekend’s World Endurance Championship event at Spa could have implications for two teams taking part in the race.
Frenchman Gabriel Aubry, who races for the Jota-run Jackie Chan DC Racing LMP2 squad, has received a suspected COVID-19 diagnosis.
His participation in the Spa 6 Hours on Saturday now rests on a second test undertaken yesterday proving negative.
The Anglo-Portuguese Algarve Pro LMP2 team is also affected because Aubry raced for it in last weekend’s European Le Mans Series round at the Belgian venue, finishing ninth with Simon Trummer and John Falb.
Members of the team who were in close contact with Aubry last weekend are currently in self-isolation and awaiting results of COVID-19 tests.
It is unclear what the implication of multiple test failures of Algarve crew would be for the team’s participation in the race with an ORECA-Gibson 07 due to be shared by Trummer, Falb and Jon Lancaster.
Aubry (below), who sit second in the standings in the Chen/DC ORECA he shares with ex-Formula 1 driver Will Stevens and Ho-Pin Tung, is not scheduled to take part in the opening free practice session on Thursday afternoon.
Jota team boss Sam Hignett revealed that preparations were already in hand to replace 22-year-old Aubry should his second test prove positive.
The three members of the Jota squad who have come into contact with Abury are also in self-isolation awaiting test results.
A WEC statement explained that the procedures followed were “in accordance with the instructions given by relevant public health authorities and the WEC and Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps’ COVID-19 medical delegate”.
“In accordance with the FIA and WEC protocols, and to mitigate the risks, the competitors and working staff at the Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, groups or ‘bubbles’ have been created with the minimum of cross-contact between each group,” it continued.
It explained that “a full track and trace initiative has been undertaken and all close contacts have been identified and quarantined as required” until the test results are known.
It added that further information will be released once the test results are confirmed.