Ad Diriyah FE opener could become night race

Alejandro Agag says that a night-time season-opening Saudi Arabian race is “a possibility” for the 2019/20 ABB FIA Formula E season, but only if the extra required power is renewable.

Ad Diriyah FE opener could become night race

FE is set to return to Saudi Arabia following the Ad Diriyah race’s debut at the start of the 2018/19 championship as part of its 10-year deal with the country’s General Sports Authority.

Motorsport.com understands that the second event is set be a double-header, although this is still to be confirmed by the FIA.

Recent reports have suggested that the Ad Diriyah event could also stage FE’s first night races, and Agag told Motorsport.com that this was “not confirmed, but it’s one of the options”.

When asked how such a move would fit in with FE’s sustainability aims, Agag said: “It depends where you get the energy from. Solar energy – it’s very sunny there. Only if it’s renewable [would FE hold a night race]."

The 2019/20 calendar is now set to feature Hong Kong, despite suggestions that the race could drop off next season due to a required track extension and planned construction work near the venue.

Agag explained that FE is “still juggling with the Asian races”, adding: “We have Seoul – that’s confirmed – and we have Hong Kong. So, Hong Kong now has a date. It's leaning towards happening.

“And then the other China race we have to see what happens – we still don’t have the solution.”

Agag has previously stated that FE’s plans for racing in China – which include the possibility of an event in Shanghai as well as the option of returning to Sanya – are “50/50”.

Marrakesh likely to drop off calendar

Sources have also suggested to Motorsport.com that FE will not return for a fourth race in Marrakesh, but Agag said the future of the Moroccan race is “not definitive”.

“We may go back to Marrakesh, we may not,” he added. “We’re actually now figuring it out. We’re still juggling with a few options here and there – we may well go back to Marrakesh but I would say [it’s] 50/50.” 

With London already confirmed as the 2019/20 double-header season finale and the intention to add Seoul to the FE schedule already announced, two events would have to drop off next season’s calendar to meet Agag’s aim of keeping “the cost low-ish for the teams”.

Monaco will not appear as part of FE's arrangement to the alternate with the principality's Historic Grand Prix, and it appears that Marrakesh will be the second race to miss out.

“I don’t want to grow the number [of total races],” said Agag. “The more races we do the more cost for everyone. And because we have two new entries – London and Seoul.

"[So] two need to go. Monaco is going, but another one has to go.”

The 2019/20 FE calendar will be officially confirmed by the FIA at the next World Motor Sport Council meeting on June 14.

Read Also:

Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3

Mitch Evans, Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3

Photo by: Sam Bagnall / LAT Images

shares
comments
Debate: Is the 2018/2019 Formula E Season too unpredictable?

Previous article

Debate: Is the 2018/2019 Formula E Season too unpredictable?

Next article

Monaco E-Prix: Rowland leads DS Techeetah pair in practice

Monaco E-Prix: Rowland leads DS Techeetah pair in practice
Load comments
The half-term report cards of each Formula E team in 2020-21 Prime

The half-term report cards of each Formula E team in 2020-21

In an eventful Formula E season, punctuated by rain and energy-conservation controversy, the 12 teams contesting the championship have endured many challenges in the opening seven races. Here's how they've got on across the first half of the season.

Formula E
May 26, 2021
How Formula E stood up to F1 comparisons in Monaco Prime

How Formula E stood up to F1 comparisons in Monaco

OPINION: It was no surprise to anybody that the laptimes achieved by Formula E cars on the full Monaco circuit were much slower than Formula 1. But perhaps the more relevant comparison was in the racing spectacle, where FE delivered in spades.

Formula E
May 12, 2021
How Monaco dealt Formula E a winning hand to cure its hangover Prime

How Monaco dealt Formula E a winning hand to cure its hangover

Formula E faced much criticism in the wake of its maligned Valencia event. In need of a turnaround, the series' first use of Monaco's iconic Formula 1 layout provided it with the injection of thrills required to clear the fog that had enveloped the paddock.

Formula E
May 11, 2021
Why Formula E's Valencia fiasco undermines engineering talent Prime

Why Formula E's Valencia fiasco undermines engineering talent

FIA president Jean Todt wanted more Formula E coverage in the media, and got his wish when the opening Valencia E-Prix proved farcical. Despite attempts to spin the race as teams failing to get their sums right, Formula E and its governing body cannot escape blame - especially when trying to get teams to commit long-term.

Formula E
Apr 27, 2021
How Valencia E-Prix farce gave Formula E an image problem Prime

How Valencia E-Prix farce gave Formula E an image problem

Formula E was under the microscope at Valencia, on its first visit to a permanent circuit. But after a mere nine drivers were left classified following Saturday's Valencia E-Prix, the electric championship once more faced criticism after rising energy deductions and miscalculations produced a farcical affair.

Formula E
Apr 25, 2021
How Vergne and Vandoorne found redemption in Rome Prime

How Vergne and Vandoorne found redemption in Rome

Another Formula E double-header, another double dose of frantic action. While the form guide remains unpredictable following fightback wins for Jean-Eric Vergne and Stoffel Vandoorne in Rome, the speed and consistency of Mercedes – both on and off the track – could have its rivals worried for what is to follow

Formula E
Apr 12, 2021
What Nissan's commitment to Gen3 reveals about Formula E's future Prime

What Nissan's commitment to Gen3 reveals about Formula E's future

Formula E's Gen3 era grid continues to take shape, after Nissan opted to commit to the series for another four years. Nissan's global chief operating officer explains why it has thrown its lot in with FE while other high-profile marques have decided to call it quits.

Formula E
Mar 24, 2021
Why the new Formula E season got off to such a controversial start Prime

Why the new Formula E season got off to such a controversial start

With the new Formula E season belatedly getting underway in Saudi Arabia, the championship appeared to try to make up for lost time with an overspill of action and controversy on and off the track. While some talking points could have serious repercussions, it was an explosive opener for many reasons.

Formula E
Mar 1, 2021