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16 August 2020 16:40

With forty one minutes remaining George would leave the pits running on the soft tyre.

spanish grand prix

Perez became the first Formula 1 driver to test positive for COVID-19 ahead of the British Grand Prix, ruling him out of both Silverstone races. It emerged Perez had returned home to Mexico to visit his mother in hospital between the races in Hungary and Great Britain, travelling on a private plane. Perez has since tested negative for COVID-19 and will return to his Racing Point F1 seat for this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix. Reports emerged in the wake of Perez's positive test suggesting he had met with sponsors and interacted with fans during his trip to Mexico. "I went to Mexico for two days to see my Mum, with all the precautions in place.

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"I have done nothing differently to anyone in this paddock, I took all the precautions, and it just happened to me. It happened to another friend in another team while I was in quarantine, he said: 'Look, I tested positive too'. The positive COVID-19 test forced Perez to miss two F1 races while he completed his quarantine period, which he spent in an apartment in Milton Keynes. Asked by Motorsport.com if he planned to make any changes to his procedures or travel arrangements in the wake of his positive case, Perez said he had already been taking all of the required precautions and would continue to do so. "Before that, we already were so conservative and took so many precautions that nothing really changes," Perez said.

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Lewis Hamilton suffered a verbal misfire when he described himself as a "chink" in the Mercedes chain — he realised that "link" was the correct term a few seconds later — but he was utterly flawless on the Circuit de Catalunya track as fastest qualifier for today's Spanish Grand Prix, the 92nd pole of his Formula One career. The other slot was unsurprisingly taken by his team-mate, Valtteri Bottas, the fifth time in six races this year that Mercedes have enjoyed that double. Imagine the recruitment decisions of a Premiership director of rugby to be like playing Sim City, the seminal city-building computer game from the 1990s. This leaves you with what Northampton director of rugby Chris Boyd calls your "Manhattan profile", the shape of your city's skyline. So Bristol Bears and Sale each have a couple superstructures in Semi Radradra, Charles Piutau, Faf de Klerk and Lood de Jager, but also possess the smallest squads in the Premiership with 38 and 34 senior players respectively.

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"Some clubs will have a lot of skyscrapers, highly paid guys, and you have to offset that with either no players or lowly paid guys so they don't have much depth," Boyd said. We have a lot of four-five day turnarounds and you can't expect players to play every four days and not get fatigued." The advantages are that they know the league, there is no culture shock and there is a direct financial incentive for fielding a certain number of English Qualified Players in your matchday squad. While Northampton's play-off rivals have spent lockdown recruiting the likes of Semi Radradra, Manu Tuilagi and Kyle Sinckler, Boyd's recruitment has remained relatively low key. Northampton Saints coach Chris Boyd talks to Sportsmail while tending to his horse It has been fine-tuned through Boyd's own experiences, including meetings with the subject of Moneyball, Billy Beane, and the top office at Cirque du Soleil in Canada. 'In cricket, they use bar diagrams to show how the team's run rate progresses as you go through the overs,' explains Boyd.

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'After 20 overs, you've got these skyscrapers that look like the Manhattan skyline. If you've got six or seven buildings over 30 storeys, then you'd better be prepared to accept a whole lot of structures that are only one storey high. All of a sudden, Lewis Ludlam went to a World Cup, Alex Moon and Fraser Dingwall went into an EPS squad, George Furbank got capped. A lot of guys got sudden recognition, without achieving anything, and their agents' and personal expectations suddenly change. Boyd speaks to Dan Biggar during a Saints training session at Franklin Gardens on Wednesday We've balanced out our Manhattan over the next three or four years, within the bounds of the salary cap.

It points towards Aotearoa — the Maori name for New Zealand — and reminds Boyd of where he cut his teeth in rugby. It was one of Boyd's former colleagues back at the New Zealand Rugby Union who set up the meeting with Beane. Beane gained Hollywood fame for the way he applied statistical analysis to baseball to build a team of low-cost, unfashionable misfits at the Oakland Athletics. 'I spent three days with Billy,' says Boyd. The pure Moneyball concept can't work in rugby because we can't just trade players. Boyd's interests extend far beyond rugby. 'In New Zealand, they have a very holistic approach to coaching and working with people,' explains Boyd. 'If you went around every Premiership club, you would see subtle but not massive differences. Every rugby club has its list of players saying: "This guy has played 400 games, this has played 300 games".' It features teams of some of the world's most talented acrobats and Boyd wanted to see what, if anything, could transfer across to rugby. 'We were sitting in the lounge of the Cirque de Soleil training school in Montreal, having a coffee, when the guy showing me around asked for my impressions,' he explains. 'He said it was so-and-so, but I was at the home of Cirque du Soleil and I couldn't see these people. Boyd has made it his priority to protect Saints academy products like Fraser Dingwall Take the Cirque du Soleil… they had these 45-minute "jouer" sessions when all the athletes are purely trying to push the boundaries. 'You sit there and go, OK, maybe we could impose 20 minutes into a rugby environment where you say: "For the next 20 minutes, I don't care how many mistakes you make, how stupid it looks, how zany it is. 'The only part of the Manhattan analogy I don't like is that you would never treat a player like a building,' says Boyd. It's a really good, old-fashioned, proper rugby club. We've spent a lot of time looking at history. We traced the four Northampton Saints players that were killed in the D-Day landings and laid a wreath. The New Zealand man has taken inspiration from the Oakland Athletics and Cirque du Soleil 'I'm not saying there's no space for skyscrapers. Boyd lists a cast of Saints players who could become the next skyscraper — and Linda jokes that the family's next horse could be named in their honour. 'We talk about Manhattan but we're not city folk really,' quips Boyd. For the Williams racing Team Friday had been a difficult day so this session would hopefully see an improvement. Norris on the medium would set a 1m:19.620 with nearly fifteen minutes of the session completed. Both Alfa Romeo cars would come out both on the soft tyre. More drivers would start to come out with forty minutes remaining including both Renault's and Ferrari's. Both racing Point cars were also running with the majority of drivers using the medium tyre. Sainz would go quickest with a 1m:19.446 on the medium tyre. Both Williams drivers were out running with both on the soft tyre. Leclerc was now quickest with a 1m:18.950, on the medium tyre, with Kvyat second. Both Mercedes were running both on the soft tyre. Hamilton was now second to be behind his team-mate. Gasly was now fourth followed by Kvyat, Sainz, Raikkonen, Norris, Ocon, and Perez tenth. Both Williams drivers continued to lap on the soft tyre but they would again drop to the bottom of the times to be slowest. At the front Verstappen was now third with the top three times all done on the soft tyre. Leclerc was now fourth followed by Gasly, Albon, Perez, Stroll, Kvyat, and Sainz tenth. On the soft tyre Norris would jump up to fourth with the only other car on the track been Sainz with twenty minutes remaining. On the soft tyre Vettel would move up to sixth with Leclerc fifth. Bottas was still quickest but now with a 1m:17.373 after a soft tyre run. With eight minutes remaining the Williams drivers were 17th and 19th. Verstappen would improve to be third followed by Sainz, Perez, Leclerc, Gasly, Stroll, Albon, Ricciardo and Ocon tenth. The Williams drivers were currently slowest with George ahead of Nicholas by 0.467s. The session would end with Hamilton fastest from Bottas, Verstappen, Sainz, Perez, Leclerc, Gasly, Stroll, Albon, and Ricciardo tenth. Another difficult session for Williams Racing with both drivers showing no major improvement from Friday. It would most likely be a repeat of the is session come qualifying with the prospects for the race not much better. With just under forty minutes left Nicholas would come out for his first run also using the soft tyre. He would drop to 15th then would become slowest pitting after a nine lap run. Nicholas would also come out for his soft tyre run. He would pit after a five lap run ending his session. With forty one minutes remaining George would leave the pits running on the soft tyre. He would pit after an eight lap run currently 19th. With eighteen minutes left in the session George would return again on the soft tyre. George would drop to 19th which was not a surprise as the session ended.