By Emre Asikci
ISTANBUL - George Russell will replace Lewis Hamilton for Sakhir GP in Bahrain after the seven-time champion contracted COVID-19, Formula 1 announced on Wednesday.
"Firstly, I want to say a huge thank you to everybody at Williams for giving me this opportunity," Russell said on formula1.com.
“I might be wearing a different race suit this weekend, but I'm a Williams driver and I'll be cheering my team on every step of the way.”
Russell said no one can replace Hamilton but he would give his all for the Mercedes team in the senior driver's absence, adding: "I'm really looking forward to the opportunity and can't wait to get out on track this week."
The 22-year-old British racer, who made his F1 debut last year with Williams, has yet to score a point, finishing 11th once and 12th twice this season.
The Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team confirmed on Tuesday that Hamilton had tested positive for coronavirus.
Hamilton last month secured the 2020 F1 title in the Turkish Grand Prix with a first-place finish at Intercity Istanbul Park.
The 35-year-old has claimed 11 victories during the 2020 season.