Momentum gathers for Zurich Formula E race

The FIA Formula E Championship is closing on a Swiss ePrix in the coming seasons, according to one of its key investors.

Momentum gathers for Zurich Formula E race

Marco Parroni, Head Global Sponsoring & Managing Director SA at Julius Baer, told Motorsport.com that the private bank will “be ready to support, in a strong way if necessary, a Swiss ePrix.”

A race in Switzerland, with the support of Julius Baer, has been on the Formula E agenda since the inception of the championship in 2014.

A change in Swiss law in 2015, when the Swiss Council of States passed a motion to allow motor sport events to take place in the country under special provisions, triggered the interest in staging the country’s first International circuit race since the 1954 Swiss Grand Prix held at Bremgarten.

Motorsport.com understands that Zurich is now the favourite to host an ePrix. The city, located in the north of the country, is the home of Julius Baer Group, which is one of the country’s oldest private banks.

The preferred location for an inaugural Swiss ePrix is believed to be on the western shore of Lake Zurich, taking in the famous Zurich Arboretum botanical gardens and the Hafen Eng area of the city.

“We believe that the Swiss Confederation remains one of the most innovative economies in the world, and is an ideal setting for a high-level event like an ePrix,” commented Parroni.

“We definitely have an interest in supporting one, and we believe they can exploit such sponsorship within our market to make one happen. The event must be first be discussed, after which we can comment appropriately or worry about further commitments and confirmation.”

Plans for a Swiss ePrix in Lugano last year came to nothing when the required €10m activation fee could not be sourced by the organisers, who included ex-Formula E driver Jarno Trulli.

Formula E has had four Swiss drivers compete in its three season history, including current champion Sebastien Buemi. Former Andretti driver Simona De Silvestro demonstrated a Formula E car on the streets of Geneva in 2015.

Motorsport.com understands that two further venues are in advanced talks with Formula E to become new races in season four of the all-electric championship in 2017-18.

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