Paris: Formula E added six races to its 2021 calendar on Thursday, but organisers of the all-electric circuit have pulled the plug on Paris with the prestigious French leg a victim of the coronavirus pandemic.
Now in its seventh season, this year’s winner will be recognised as an official FIA world champion for the first time, a sign of the championships’ growing stature.
Saudi Arabia gets this year’s campaign underway with back-to-back night races at Dirayah on 26-27 February as announced earlier this month.
Then the season will move on to Rome, Valencia in Spain, Monaco, Marrakech and two races in the Chilean capital Santiago, where the season had originally been due to start this month, between April and June.
The remainder of the calendar will be released “in early Spring”, organisers said in a statement, depending on the evolution of the pandemic.
The absent Paris leg will return in 2022.
“This race is staged right in the city centre with lots of free areas for the public. To stage it with all the necessary restrictions was really too complicated,” Formula E’s sporting director Frederic Espinos told AFP.
NEWS: Formula E announces second set of races for 2020/21 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship ⚡️
— ABB FIA Formula E World Championship (@FIAFormulaE) January 28, 2021
“What complicates matters is that at its heart Formula E races should be held in city centres and clearly given the current situation that makes things more complex.”
In all Espinos is hoping the season will eventually consist of 13 or 14 races, including legs in Sanya (China) and Seoul.
“A decision on these will be taken with the rest of the calendar in early Spring depending on the travel and local restrictions,” explained Espinos.
Valencia will be appearing on the calendar for the first time at the existing Ricardo Tormo circuit.
Portugal’s Antonio Felix da Costa claimed the Formula E championship in 2020.
Provisional 2021 Formula E calendar:
26 February – Diriyah, Saudi Arabia
27 February – Diriyah, Saudi Arabia
10 April – Rome
24 April – Valencia
8 May – Monaco
22 May – Marrakech
5 June – Santiago
6 June – Santiago