Virus victim angrily denies accusations
Sergio Perez has hit out at critics as his boss revealed how the F1 star may have become infected with COVID-19.
Perez has missed the last two races after testing positive to coronavirus before the British Grand Prix, but the Racing Point driver will return to the grid for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix after delivering a negative test result during the week.
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Perez returned to his native Mexico after last month's Hungarian Grand Prix and there were reports he had been sighted dining out at a restaurant and mingling with fans and sponsors.
But the 30-year-old slammed those suggestions as "bulls***" and "unprofessional", denying he did anything wrong.
"I haven't done anything different to the rest of the paddock, so I was just the unlucky one to get it," Perez said.
"I'm not willing to take any blame for that, because anyone can get it, and I was just an unlucky one."
Racing Point boss Otmar Szafnauer believes Perez caught coronavirus after returning to Europe, possibly from a private chef.
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"We think he got it from one of the private chefs that he hired," Szafnauer said. "That, quite frankly, could happen to any one of us. He took every precaution he could privately. He stayed with his parents, he didn't go out to eat.
"When he got back to Europe, he hired a private chef so he wouldn't go to the restaurants. We think he got it from the chef."
Daniel Ricciardo's former Renault teammate Nico Hulkenberg took Perez's place at Racing Point for the races he missed, but the Mexican is back behind the wheel in Barcelona this weekend.
"It's really great to see him get over the virus," Szafnauer said. "When he tested positive, he was full of virus, and he got it out of his system pretty quickly.
"I think that's just because he's in great shape.
"We hope that he gets back up to speed in the car as well. After (opening practice session) FP1, it looked like that's happening."
Originally published as Virus victim angrily denies accusations