Perez tests positive, Hulkenberg to start at Silverstone

Nico Hulkenberg will compete for Racing Point in the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix

Racing Point has confirmed Nico Hulkenberg will contest this weekend’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone after Sergio Perez tested positive for COVID-19.

It will be the second successive event for the German driver after Sergio Perez missed the British Grand Prix at the same circuit last weekend.

Prior to this weekend’s race, Racing Point confirmed Perez had completed his mandatory isolation period. However, the team has confirmed the Mexican driver will not be able to contest the fifth round of the season.

Perez is “physically well and recovering” according to the team.

Hulkenberg’s return to Formula 1 was stifled when a sheared bolt prior on the morning of last weekend’s British Grand Prix meant he couldn’t take the start.

The 32-year-old from Germany said he is looking forward to having a second shot.

“I’m excited to get going again with the team at Silverstone,” said Hulkenberg.

“Last weekend, it was a real step into the unknown having been away from the team for a few years – and driving a car I’d never driven before.

“I’ve learned a lot in the last week about the RP20, and I am ready to apply my experiences to this weekend.

“Racing at the same track again makes things a bit easier and the team has done a great job in helping me get up to speed.

“I think we can fight for points this weekend, which is definitely my goal. I also want to wish Checo all the best in his recovery.”

Racing Point CEO Otmar Szafnauer said he was disappointed Perez couldn’t return but hoped for success with Hulkenberg.

“Nico did a really strong job last weekend after receiving a last-minute call to drive for us at Silverstone, and he proved why he was an obvious choice to stand in for Checo,” he said.

“It was a big shame he couldn’t actually take the start of the race last Sunday, but the all that hard work will prove very useful for this weekend.

“We miss having Checo with us, but we wish him well and look forward to welcoming him back into the team in the near future.”

Free Practice 1 for the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone is set to get underway at 20:00 AEST.

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