Vettel: F1 drivers will 'pull the handbrake' on Australian Grand Prix if coronavirus situation worsens


Sebastien Vettel has threatened that drivers will take matters into their own hands should the coronavirus situation in Australia escalate.

The former world champion was speaking ahead of the opening race of the calendar amidst stern protests from the local public against the holding of the race.

The F1 is currently awaiting the results of tests on no less than five members of various teams who have been forced into self-isolation in their hotels after presenting with coronavirus like symptoms.

As unease in the paddock continues to grow, Vettel has stated categorically that, should the situation worsen, drivers will be brave enough to stand up and push for authorities to pull the plug on the event.

"I hope others would agree, and we hope it doesn't get that far, but if it were to get that far then for sure you pull the handbrake," said the German.

"I think we are a group of 20 guys and I think we've got together over the last years for various circumstances on various topics, and I think we share common opinion on big decisions and that.

"I would qualify it is a very, very big decision and ultimately, as I said before, you look at yourself.

"And we would, I think, be mature enough to look after ourselves and pull the handbrake in that case."

At the same conference, Lewis Hamilton expressed his shock that the race had been given the green light to go ahead despite the very real threat of the disease spreading even further.

Were Vettel and the drivers forced to make a stand, it really would be an unprecedented move.

Thus far, authorities have turned a blind eye to the protest surrounding the hosting of the event, repeatedly assuring both crew and fans alike that the weekend will be safe.

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