until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Formula E

Marrakesh replaces Vancouver on 2022 Formula E calendar

by Sam Smith
3 min read

until Abu Dhabi Autonomous Racing League

Marrakesh will replace the postponed Formula E Vancouver EPrix in the same July 2 date slot.

The Moroccan venue will host its fifth EPrix and its first since February 2020 after a hastily arranged substitute race was mooted at a Formula E board meeting held in Monaco last month.

That came in the same week that the Vancouver plans fell apart just eight weeks before the new Canadian event was due to host one of the jewel in the crown events on the 2022 calendar.

Formula E has remained tight-lipped on the specific reasons for the Vancouver postponement but it is known that a permit was not issued for the race after issues between the city council and local promoters, the OSS Group.

Organisers looked at the possibility of making the Jakarta EPrix in early June a double-header race, but The Race understands that this was recently discounted due to the nascent infrastructure and in particular the relative lack of international experience of officials and marshals in Indonesia.

The inclusion of Marrakesh will ensure that Formula E maintains a 16-race calendar, something which it needed to ringfence as it continues to recover from the global pandemic which has hit its calendars particularly hard since 2020.

Spacesuit Media Lou Johnson 191707

The confirmation that Marrakesh will host a race means that Formula E will tick off Africa as a continent it races on, in addition to Europe, Asia and North America this season.

The Circuit Automobile International Moulay El Hassan street circuit was at one stage going to feature on the 2022 calendar as a replacement for a planned race in China. But Formula E officials decided instead to swallow a seven-week gap between the Mexico City and Rome races instead.

Formula E has had consistent issues with calendar delivery even before the pandemic with a variety of political and commercial problems scuppering plans for races that ranged from Brussels, Rio de Janiero and Cape Town, the latter of which was postponed from this February due to a variety of complications.

Talking to The Race about the frustrations of the schedule difficulties, Porsche motorsport boss Thomas Laudenbach said that the loss of Vancouver and the unstable calendar was “disappointing”.

“It does effect the championship more than people realise because the calendar is important, we’re all very active in talking about tracks for the future, we were all voting for street circuits again, so yes, for us it’s very I would say disappointing that Vancouver is not on the calendar,” said Laudenbach.

“This is maybe one of the downsides of the organisation of Formula E; for sure we see entertainment in them [the events] and that’s good, but if you ask about the influence we have [teams on the calendar], we have the influence by making clear to them [organisers] how important it is for us, but in the end they make the calendar.

“Of course, it has an effect on the team, when we talk about sponsors and we would like to provide a fun package to them and with this package, everything is sold the contract is what it is and when the package changes it’s always difficult.

“I hope for the future it’s more stable.

“I’m not saying it’s OK, I’m just saying I have some understanding for how difficult it is to do races in the city, it’s much more difficult than having races on a circuit, so maybe we should give Formula E some credit in order to get that right. But yes, it’s very disappointing.”

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