News World Prince Albert tests positive for coronavirus, Monaco cancels grand prix

Prince Albert tests positive for coronavirus, Monaco cancels grand prix

Princess Charlene of Monaco with Prince Jacques of Monaco and Prince Albert II of Monaco with Princess Gabriella. Photo: AAP
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Prince Albert of Monaco has tested positive for coronavirus but his health is not a cause for concern, his office says.

“Prince Albert is continuing to work from the office in his private apartments,” it said in a statement.

The office also added that Prince Albert is in constant contact with members of his cabinet, the government and his closest staff.

The European Union’s chief negotiator for Brexit, Michel Barnier, also said on Thursday he had tested positive for coronavirus.

Meanwhile Monaco cancelled its showcase Formula One Grand Prix, the most famous and glamorous race on the calendar, in another high-profile sporting casualty of the coronavirus epidemic on Thursday.

F1 had earlier announced the race was postponed, along with the Dutch and Spanish races also scheduled for May, and also pushed back a major technical rules revamp from 2021 to 2022.

But The Automobile Club de Monaco (ACM) said uncertainty about the teams’ participation and border controls, with neighbouring Italy in lockdown, made the situation ‘untenable’ and postponement was impossible.

A popular race for historic race cars, which uses the same tight and twisty fenced streets and was scheduled for earlier in May, was also called off.

“Under no circumstances will it be possible to organise these events later this year,” said the ACM.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc was born in Monaco while Mercedes’ six-times world champion Lewis Hamilton and other drivers also live there.

The announcement about Monaco, a highlight of the motorsport season scheduled for May 24, came as the Mediterranean principality revealed its ruler Prince Albert had tested positive for the virus.

The 10 teams and the sport’s top officials earlier agreed unanimously in a conference call to delay the implementation of technical changes that have been years in the planning.