Mercedes has assrted that it is doing “everything it can” to ensure Lewis Hamilton returns to the cockpit of the W11 at the season finale in Abu Dhabi this weekend.
Hamilton last Monday returned a positive Covid-19 test, becoming the third F1 driver to do so in 2020, and was ruled out of the Sakhir Grand Prix.
George Russell was drafted in as his replacement, impressing on his debut after missing out on pole position by just 0.026s and seeing the race victory snatched from his grasp due to pit stop issues and a slow puncture.
Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff has outlined that Hamilton’s condition is improving but says a decision has yet to be taken on who drives the W11 this weekend.
“There are still some question marks over who will be in the car this weekend in Abu Dhabi,” Wolff said.
“Lewis’s condition is improving, but we won’t know until closer to the time if he will be driving.
“We’ll do everything we can to get him in the car and we know he’s determined to be back as soon as possible. But his health is our main priority, so we will see what the situation is and then make the call.”
On Tuesday, Hamilton provided the first public update since the announcement of his Covid-19 diagnosis, stating he is back training and aiming to be in Abu Dhabi.
Russell has been listed at Mercedes for Thursday’s media duties in Abu Dhabi, however nothing is confirmed beyond then.
Likewise, Jack Aitken is noted as being with Williams on Thursday, having made his debut with the team in Bahrain following Russell’s call-up.
Under FIA regulations Hamilton could in theory arrive at the Yas Marina Circuit as late as Saturday evening, with drivers not obliged to participate in any practice sessions prior to qualifying.