Formula E CEO Alejandro Agag, Dragon Racing team driver Jerome D’Ambrosio and members of the press gathered together today in a sun drenched Battersea Park for a unique look at the Visa London ePrix ahead of the final two races held on location in London. With D’Ambrosio in pole position, the excursion around the proposed race track took place not in electric cars, but instead on electric bikes. The fleet of electric bikes had been provided by Fully Charged.
Explaining the reasoning behind the choice of venue, Alejandro Agag said:
“We didn’t want to spread [London] traffic like a virus immediately, everywhere. We needed to find somewhere that wouldn’t have that effect. And we found it. Whoever designed this park a couple of centuries ago, did it with a race track inside. We’re very thankful for that. We only had to make really very minor modifications to the road to make it into a fascinating race track.”
Emphasising the benefits of electric cars, Agag continued,
“Obviously, we could not race here if we weren’t electric. Cities around the world are promoting e-mobility and that is exactly what Formula E is trying to do too. The Mayor of London and Wandsworth Council have helped make this a possibility.”
Adding to the relevance of the event taking place in a park, a first for Formula E, Agag concluded:
“This is the first time in the season that we’re going to race in a park. We think that’s a great message because clean cars and clean mobility makes sense in a park like this. We aim to leave the park better than when we arrive and we think that Battersea will have been improved after the race. We want the race to be a positive influence on the park.”
Describing the track layout and critical areas of interest for both drivers and spectators alike, D’Ambrosio drew attention in particular to the steep camber of the roads and tight turns, certain to make for an eventful and exciting finalé to the inaugural Formula E season. He said:
“It’s going to be very exciting. I’m already holding my breath about a couple of the corners! It’s going to be a big challenge for sure. We will run the car higher than usual to stop the floor of the car touching the road and to make sure that when we hit the brakes all four wheels are on the ground. I think there could be a lot of safety cars!”
D’Ambrosio is currently fifth in the driver standings but despite his obvious talent in the electric race car, he wasn’t afraid to show his concern for the leafy track, commenting:
“I think we’ll need to use our clear visors because of the shade caused by the trees. And, I hope I’m not in the first qualifying group as I think there are going to be a lot of leaves on the track at that stage too.”
Asked about the possibility of rain, D’Ambrosio was adamant that it would not. However, the ever-present threat of Great British weather would mark a first time for a wet Formula E race. The Visa London ePrixs happen to coincide with the notorious Glastonbury Festival weekend, where it is frequently hampered by sudden storms.
The Visa London ePrix takes place on the 27th and 28th June 2015 at Battersea Park. Tickets are available via the link below, but 30,000 have already been sold! All previous Formula E events have sold out, so our advice is don’t wait until the last minute! Get your Formula E Visa London ePrix tickets here.