Last year we reported that the City of Cape Town is eager to host a Formula E race (original story here). It seems that we may see a race sooner rather than later as it was announced earlier today.
Mother City Street circuit
The Cape Town Formula E Bid Company, called e-Movement, today confirmed its intention to host a Formula E race using a street circuit in the heart of Cape Town. e-Movement has secured the backing of Jaguar South Africa as for the initial stages of the project in Cape. This news comes hot on the heels that another company SAGP is trying to bring a Formula One Grand Prix to SA as well. Read our exclusive interview here.
Formula E will have World Championship status from the next season, which starts in the latter part of 2020. The world’s only battery powered single-seater series currently races on streets circuits all over the world. Our sources with the Formula E paddock told us that the series track designers were recently in Cape Town scouting possible locations. This past weekend a South African racing driver, Kelvin van der Linde, was given his first taste of the Formula E racer when he tested at the Morocco circuit the day after the race meeting. This all points to the seriousness and likelihood of the race taking place sooner, rather than later.
Check out the next generation Formula E racecar here.
In their own words
Iain Banner, Chairman of e-Movement, confirmed the positive progress made following the feasibility study undertaken by members of Formula E Operations during a site visit in September 2019: “The objective of the study was to assess the suitability of Cape Town as a possible venue for a round of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in future seasons. Three possible circuit layouts have been identified and we are now in the process of exploring these possibilities with the City of Cape Town and other interested parties.
“As a starting point, the preliminary track layout and how it fits into the existing fabric of the precinct – as well as the future development proposals around the identified track – were all key factors in assessing the City of Cape Town’s suitability. The primary objective was to design a suitable circuit layout that will have minimum impact on the City, require minimum construction work, cause minimum disruption to general public and traffic, and, crucially, leave a lasting legacy”.
Councillor JP Smith, Cape Town’s Mayco member: “The event is so much more than an E-Prix – it provides an opportunity to position the City of Cape Town and the Western Cape region as the pioneering renewable energy hub of South Africa. The event would not only showcase the natural beauty of our City but such an event places Cape Town at the forefront of alternative and green energy initiatives, and serves as a catalyst for attracting investment and the creation of employment in a sector for which major growth is projected in the foreseeable future”.
Lisa Mallett, Marketing Director: “Partnering with e-Movement to bring this premier motorsport event to South Africa, will assist in showcasing the tangible efforts Jaguar has made in infrastructure and carrying the momentum of all Electric Vehicles on a local level. We look forward to introducing South Africans to our Panasonic Jaguar Racing Team and reaffirming that racing is in our blood – even when powered by electricity. We wish the entire project, including the broader alternative and green energy activities associated with this event and the simultaneous Energy Week proposed by the Bid Company, success. ”