Knoxville Raceway COVID-19 outbreak
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Knoxville Raceway addresses apparent COVID-19 outbreak

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Knoxville Raceway said a staff member tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) after its recent World of Outlaws races amidst reports of an apparent outbreak from the Aug. 13-15 event at the Iowa track.

Three sprint car drivers who raced in The One and Only event, which was the stand-in for the postponed Knoxville Nationals, tweeted they had positive COVID-19 tests, and at least three teams are skipping races this weekend because of positive tests for crew members. Others who were in attendance at the races also have posted on social media about positive tests.

In its statement, Knoxville Raceway said it “has been made aware of several positive COVID-19 results this week within the Sprint Car racing community.

“Knoxville Raceway continues to work closely with the Marion County Public Health Department and Marion County Emergency Management while those agencies monitor the situation.”

Knoxville Raceway, which typically draws capacity crowds of 23,000 for its prestigious Nationals, has been playing host to crowds limited to 7,000. The 60th annual Knoxville Nationals were postponed until next year because of the COVID-19 restrictions.

Here’s the statement from Knoxville Raceway:

COVID-19 Update

Following last weekend’s “One and Only” race weekend, a member of the Knoxville Raceway staff tested positive for COVID-19. Upon notification and in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, the individual isolated themself away from Knoxville Raceway and will remain quarantined as directed by medical professionals.

Knoxville Raceway has been made aware of several positive COVID-19 results this week within the Sprint Car racing community. Knoxville Raceway continues to work closely with the Marion County Public Health Department and Marion County Emergency Management while those agencies monitor the situation.

 

Michael Schumacher’s son to make F1 practice debut at Nurburgring

F1 Mick Schumacher
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MARANELLO, Italy — Mick Schumacher, son of the legednary seven-time champion, will have an official Formula One drive during an F1 race weekend for the first time next week at the Nurburgring, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari said Tuesday.

Schumacher gets the practice drive in an Alfa Romeo on Oct. 9 on his home track in Germany as a member of Ferrari’s young driver program, taking over Antonio Giovinazzi’s car for the first session of the weekend.

“I am overjoyed to get this chance in free practice,” Schumacher said in a statement. “I’m going to prepare myself well, so that I can do the best possible job for the team and gain some valuable data for the weekend.”

The 21-year-old Schumacher leads the Formula 2 standings after winning races in Monza and Sochi. He won the European Formula 3 championship in 2018 and tested a Ferrari F1 car in Bahrain in April 2019. He also has done demonstration runs in his father’s old cars, most recently this month ahead of the Tuscan Grand Prix in a championship-winning 2004 Ferrari.

Michael Schumacher holds the F1 record with 91 victories, which Lewis Hamilton is on the verge of tying.

Ferrari said two other drivers in its academy program will also get practice drives in Formula One.

Callum Ilott, a British driver who is second to Mick Schumacher in F2, will drive an F1 Haas at the Nurburgring on the same day as Schumacher. Russian driver Robert Shwartzman will drive in practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Dec. 11, though Ferrari hasn’t said for which team.

The German round was added to the F1 schedule after the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season and will be officially known as the Eifel Grand Prix after a nearby mountain range. The Nurburgring last hosted F1 in 2013.