Vallelunga operators confirm talks with Formula E about 2024 Italian race
Very surprisingly, Formula E has removed the Rome E-Prix from the race calendar for 2024. Behind the scenes, the racing series is now working on finding an alternative venue in Italy. In addition to the two permanent racetracks in Imola and Misano, a third course, the Autodromo Vallelunga, also seems to have a chance. It would not be the first time that an electric motorsport series has raced there.
"Formula E and FIA experts have been studying the races in Rome in Season 9, where the new, faster and more powerful Gen3 car was pushed to its limits on the tight, twisty circuit in Rome's business district," Formula E said on the from the Italian capital in a press release. In Saturday's 2023 race, Sam Bird had lost control of his Jaguar, causing one of the biggest mass collisions in the history of the racing series.
Instead of Rome, Formula E could therefore race next year half an hour's drive further north at the Autodromo Vallelunga. The circuit's officials confirmed on Saturday on the track's Facebook and Instagram page that they were in talks with Formula E about a long-term agreement. "ACI Vallelunga has been the sporting organiser of the FIA World Championship race in Rome for five years. We have considerable experience in this field," said Vallelunga general director Alfredo Scala.
"For a few days we have been in constant contact with Formula E, to whom we have presented our candidacy to host an E-Prix as part of the Formula E World Championship for the next seasons," Scala continued. "The institutions involved have expressed their full support for a long-term project to hold the first world championship with electric cars in the region, which pays great attention to sustainable mobility issues, for which Polo Vallelunga has been a pioneer."
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The organisers have not only been able to gain experience with electric motorsport in Rome. The Autodromo Vallelunga itself also hosted an FIA ETCR event (called Pure ETCR in the first year) in 2021 and 2022. In both events, Mikel Azcona became "King of the Weekend".
The venue for the double header on 13 and 14 April is the only one missing from the Formula E race calendar for the 2024 season so far. It has only been announced that the races will be held in Italy. A final decision is expected by early December when the FIA's World Motor Sport Council meets for its final session this year.