Home to the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile and now one of the latest venues to hold an electrifying Formula E race, Paris announced more information about its upcoming ePrix this morning, including unveiling the track layout for the event.
The inaugural Paris ePrix will be held on Saturday 23rd April, with the track being designed around the iconic complex of Les Invalides. The 1.93 km clockwise track will host the first European round of the 2015/2016 Formula E Championship, followed by Berlin, Moscow and of course London as the season finale.
Guests present at the announcement, which was held at the famed Hotel de Ville in the city, included French racing stars such as Dragon Racing’s Loic Duval and DS Virgin Racing’s Jean-Eric Vergne. As well as the current Formula E drivers, ex-F1 World Champion and now part of the Renault e.dams team, Alain Prost was in attendance too.
Also present at the event was FIA President Jean Todt, who stated the event was “a dream come true.” Speaking to a packed audience of journalists, city officials and notable guests, Todt spoke on behalf of the FIA about the “spectacle” that would be on offer during the race weekend in April.
“The FIA is particularly pleased that there will be a Formula E race run through the streets of the centre of Paris, the city that has been our home for over a century. This series is heavily linked to the development of new technologies and to promoting a new model for sustainable mobility. It is entirely logical therefore, that a country like France, that has always been at the cutting-edge of innovation, should host an ePrix in its capital city. I am sure that the spectacle offered by Formula E on a track laid out against the amazing backdrop of Les Invalides, will make this event truly unique among motorsport events at a world level.”
Also present was the Mayor of Paris, Ann Hidalgo. Speaking on the panel, Hidalgo passionately backed the electric racing series. “Here in Paris, we are battling pollution,” she said. “I’m incredibly proud to be here today and I believe electric cars are the future.”
With the return of an exciting racing series to France, the Minister of City, Patrick Kanner, has also emphasised that there is no competition with a possible return of F1 in France.
Alongside Todt, Hidalgo and Kanner was Formula E CEO, Alejandro Agag.
“As a series we are fortunate enough to race in some incredible locations but none more spectacular than the backdrop in the city of Paris. The ethos of Formula E is urban racing in the heart of cities around the world – Paris certainly ticks all those boxes. France is also a key market for the championship as the home of the FIA, Official Founding Partner and Tyre Supplier Michelin, and team partners such as DS and Renault. The Paris ePrix will be an iconic setting for Formula E with DHL, the championship’s Official Logistics Partner, delivering the first fully-electric race to the French capital,” Agag said on Wednesday morning.
The track layout was also revealed at the conference and has received positive feedback on social media. With many overtaking spots and a top speed estimated at 200km/h by Formula E, it is sure to prove a popular track with motorsport fans.
Tickets for the ePrix will be available in the coming weeks for those who wish to attend.