Australian Grand Prix called off amid Coronavirus

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Formula One on Friday confirmed that Australian Grand Prix has been cancelled amidst coronavirus outbreak.

Australian Open which is the opening round of the Formula One was slated to be held on March 15 but it was put under a cloud as McLaren pulled out of the race when its team member tested positive for coronavirus.

“Last night a member of the McLaren Racing team tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. A further seven individuals returned negative results, confirming that they do not have the COVID-19 virus,” Australian GP organisers said in an official statement.

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“Additionally, a ninth individual has been assessed and tested for the COVID-19 virus, with the results of this test pending. This individual is not associated with any Formula 1 team, the FIA or associated suppliers,” it added.

The coronavirus disease was first detected in Wuhan in China’s Hubei province, in late December, and has since spread worldwide.

More than 127,000 people have been infected with COVID-19, with over 4,700 having died and 68,000 recovered.

About 600 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the United Kingdom with eight fatalities, according to the Department of Health and Social Care.

On Wednesday, World Health Organisation (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that the COVID-19 outbreak could be characterised as a pandemic.

(With ANI inputs)

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