Formula E testing has kicked off ahead of its seventh season, and it’s bringing a hell of a lot of great things with it. This will be the first year FE is an officially certified world championship, and there have been countless driver swaps after the conclusion of the previous season. But perhaps most exciting is the fact that the series might announce the return of a Canadian ePrix for the following season.
To date, there have only been two ePrix in Canada, both taking place in Montreal as a 2017 doubleheader as the championship-deciding races. Instead of taking place at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, a park-turned-race circuit used during Formula One race weekends, FE opted for a street circuit utilizing downtown proper.
It was a fun race, both to watch and to attend. From a more personal standpoint, I could see the makeshift track from the hostel my friends and I have traditionally stayed at when going to races in Montreal. But the events were also full of drama and close racing. Ultimately, though, local politics and allegations of misappropriated funds prevented the event from recurring a second year.
Now, though, Jalopnik contributor Hazel Southwell is reporting that a return to Canada might just be in the cars—although, not in Montreal. She has noted that Vancouver is now the best option in a recent RaceFans article.
At the helm of the project is Matthew Carter, who was appointed as CEO of the Lotus F1 team in 2013 despite having no previous experience in F1. After the team was sold in 2015, he went on to become the senior consultant for a company called One Stop Strategy Motorsports, a company that serves as a designer and promoter of motorsport events, particularly those that take place on street circuits.
The company doesn’t have a huge resumé under its belt, but it is responsible for bringing the 2019 Swiss ePrix to life, which was a huge deal considering it was the first race held in Switzerland in decades. So, he has experience in the FE world.
Also listed as a consultant is Anne Roy, who served as press agent to the mayor of Montreal from 2013 to 2016 before moving into the realm of motorsport. OSS co-owner Phillip Smirnow has ties to the promotion company that organizes the F1 Canadian Grand Prix.
Vancouver has been on Formula E’s radar since at least 2018, considering the city’s history. It hosted street races for the CART Series for years, and it’s become a mecca for sustainability and eco-friendly transportation in the years since CART left.
While there’s currently a to-be-announced slot still sitting empty in FE’s 2021 calendar, it’s unlikely that the event will be a Vancouver race. That empty slot is sandwiched between races in Seoul, South Korea and Berlin, Germany. It’s more likely that the race will take place in 2022.