London E-Prix open to date and venue change

The Formula E season finale in London could change dates or switch from the ExCeL Centre to an alternative location, according to series CEO Jamie Reigle.

London E-Prix open to date and venue change

A British round is set to return to the FE calendar after a four-year hiatus, with the ExCeL Centre due to host a double-header event across July 25-26 as part of a multi-year deal.

But the exhibition venue has been transformed into the temporary Nightingale Hospital to provide an extra 4,000 beds for patients affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking during an online press conference to announce the launch of an FE Esports series, Reigle said the championship was in frequent contact with the London Docklands venue.

He said: “We’re in regular dialogue with the ExCeL. They’re fantastic partners and we have a long-term relationship with them.

“We have a strong mutual interest in making sure a race happens in the ExCeL, not just this year but over at least the next five years.

“We think that venue is really cool – indoor, outdoor, with the paddock inside. When we heard they were going to become the Nightingale Hospital we were super supportive of that. They’ve been supportive of us.”

But Reigle said that FE was assessing delaying the date of the race – if it is to remain at the ExCeL – or to move to a different venue.

“In terms of the calendar, we’re looking at a number of options holistically around the overall race calendar from July,” he added. “That includes different dates for the ExCeL and it includes alternative venues in the UK.”

“I cant really say much more but, as you can probably imagine, we’re being very open-minded about the criteria because we really want to get back to some on-track racing before the season is out.”

His comments also raise doubt over the New York race on July 11, as the Brooklyn site has also been turned into a temporary care facility.

Although the FE season is currently serving a two-month suspension as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, it is set to return for the Berlin E-Prix on June 21.

Reigle added that this race is still scheduled to go ahead, but the situation remained subject to flux.

“[Berlin] is still going ahead as we sit here today,” he said. “That situation is fluid. We should have some clarity on that in the next two weeks.”

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