Motor racing: Racing Point report seven COVID-19 cases so far this season

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FILE PHOTO: Portuguese Grand Prix
FILE PHOTO: Portuguese Grand Prix

(Reuters) - The Racing Point Formula One team have had seven positive cases of COVID-19 this season, including both their drivers and team owner, principal Otmar Szafnauer said on Friday.

Mexican Sergio Perez, who missed two races in August, and Canadian Lance Stroll, who was ruled out of the Eifel GP at the Nuerburgring this month, are the only drivers to have contracted the virus since the season started in Austria in July.

Stroll's father Lawrence tested positive this month on the same day his son returned home to Switzerland from the Nuerburgring on Oct. 11.

"Two drivers and a team owner and a handful of other people that were tested at the factory and that's it -- so in total I think we're seven," Szafnauer told reporters at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Italy's Imola circuit.

Szafnauer said no engineers were among that number.

"We don't name people, as to who tested positive, and we don't name their roles either," he said.

Perez told reporters that two of those who tested positive had worked on his car, including his front-end mechanic, and had been missing from the Oct. 11 Eifel Grand Prix at the Nuerburgring.

"Let's not forget that this virus can get very serious, so for me the most important thing was to have them back fully recovered, which they are back, both of my guys, and that was the most important thing," said the Mexican.

Sunday's race is taking place behind closed doors as part of measures to fight a resurgence of the virus.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Toby Davis)