Esteban Gutierrez has revealed he needed a day in hospital after the recent race in Baku to get to the bottom of a lingering health issue.
The Haas driver said that after struggling with illness for some weeks, he travelled from Azerbaijan to his native Mexico for hospital checks.
“I was examined all day from head to toe,” Gutierrez, 24, is quoted by Speed Week.
Doctors discovered that not only was the driver suffering from a virus, but also a bacterial infection.
“I was worried,” he said, “because I could tell in the three or four weeks beforehand that something was wrong.”
Gutierrez claims that F1’s hectic round-the-world schedule had affected his body’s ability to fight back.
“After Monaco I had gone home to the heat of Mexico, and then to Montreal where it was very cold. Immediately after that we were on the other side of the world in Baku, where it was hot. Of course that made it worse.
“Now it’s under control and I’m 100 per cent healthy again,” he revealed.
Indeed, Gutierrez qualified 11th in Austria, two places ahead of his Haas teammate Romain Grosjean.