With just over three months to go until the E-Prix in Jakarta, Indonesia, scheduled for the weekend of June 4, the event is giving promoters more headaches than satisfaction. This week, the event’s organizers declared that the capacity planned to accommodate 50,000 spectators will have to be reduced to 10,000.
Irawan Sucahyono, a member of the Executive Committee preparing the Formula E race, was in charge of making the announcement. Despite the large reduction in capacity for fans, the executive did not rule out the possibility that as work on the circuit progresses, this number could increase.
“We could have 10,000 live fans, although this number could increase depending on how the project develops and the evaluation made by Formula E later on,” Sucahyono said.
These statements contrast with the comments made last December by Widi Amanasto, director of PT yakarta Propertindo, main sponsor of the E-Prix. Amanasto pointed out that such was the expectation sown by the series of electric single-seaters that they were going to set up extra areas to increase capacity and avoid chaos inside the circuit.
The race on Indonesian soil has unleashed a storm of obstacles. In the first instance, politicians opposed to the city’s government authorities criticized the fact that, in the midst of a deep economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, resources were being allocated for a non-priority sporting event.
However, the Indonesian government received an endorsement from Formula E. Series Director Alberto Longo expressed his appreciation for Indonesia’s participation. He valued the efforts of the country’s President, Joko Widodo, to reduce dependence on conventional energy and switch to environmentally friendly production.
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Specifically on the resources earmarked for the race, Longo stated last December that there was nothing to hide: “We like transparency. We also transparently ask people in Jakarta because there is nothing to hide here.”
Another complication involved in the event is the construction of the street circuit. The works, although still on schedule, presented difficulties to work on the layout, since about 40% of the total length is swampy ground to carry out the corresponding work.
The site determined for the event consists of 2,400 meters with 18 curves and a straight track of about 527 meters.
Written by I Jhonattan González