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Formula E chief says rain not a problem but hopes for sunny race in Moscow

June 04, 2015, 19:53 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The inaugural Formula E season already saw eight spectacular races in different corners of the world and the weather favored all of the previous races with nice and sunny conditions
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Spectators watch the qualifying of the FIA Formula E race at the former Tempelhof Airport in Berlin

Spectators watch the qualifying of the FIA Formula E race at the former Tempelhof Airport in Berlin

© EPA/RAINER JENSEN

MOSCOW, June 4. /TASS/. Formula E cars, which are completely electricity-powered, are capable of racing in rainy conditions, and Saturday’s ePrix will go ahead as scheduled in case it rains, Alejandro Agag, the chief executive of Formula E racing, told TASS on Thursday.

The inaugural Formula E season already saw eight spectacular races in different corners of the world and the weather favored all of the previous races with nice and sunny conditions. The two remaining races of the championship are scheduled to be held in Moscow on June 6 and London on June 27 with both capitals of Russia and Great Britain, respectively, known for naughty weather and rains.

"We have been testing in England with massive rain so there would be no problem," Agag said adding that any dangers of a short circuit or of an electric shock to a driver were ruled out during the race in a rainy weather.

All cars racing in the FIA Formula E championship are identical, therefore the drivers are in equal positions. The car weighs little less than 900 kilograms with the battery being the heaviest part of the vehicle weighing at about 350 kilograms. With the maximum power of 200 kW (270 hp) the car is capable of reaching the speed of 100 kmph in three seconds and its maximum speed is limited to 225 kmph.

Addressing a news conference in Moscow on Thursday, Agag said he was impressed with the work of the Russian organizers constructing a track in a short period of time.

"I was here for the press conference two weeks ago and it was just the beginning of the construction work," Agag said. ""I am very impressed with the fantastic job done by our Russian partners in a short period of time."

The Formula E chief executive paid his previous visit to Moscow on May 20-21, on the eve of the Berlin ePrix and at that time he said "it was a very emotional moment when I walked at 1 a.m. in the morning [May 21] in the streets of Moscow around the place, where the race will happen."

"I want to thank very specially the authorities of the city of Moscow for allowing us to organize and to do this race in that place, because we are going to hold the race in the one of the most iconic places in the world," he said two weeks ago.

A total of 10 teams are currently participating in the Formula E championship with two drivers racing for each team. The list of the pilots of the new racing event include the names of such developed racers as Jerome D'Ambrosio, Jarno Trulli, Sebastien Buemi, Nick Heidfeld, Bruno Senna, Nelson Piquet, Jean-Eric Vergne and many others.

Eight races held so far within the frames of the inaugural Formula E season took place in China’s Beijing, Malaysia’s Putrajaya, Uruguay’s Punta del Este, Argentina’s Buenos Aires, the Unites States’ Miami and Long Beach, as well as in Monaco and in Germany’s Berlin.

The Formula E race in Moscow will be also the first ever FIA authorized car race in the historic downtown of the Russian capital.

Popularity of auto racing in Russia skyrocketed last year as the country held its inaugural Formula One Grand Prix in the Black Sea resort city of Sochi. Over 166,000 people, including at least 500 high-ranking guests from Russia and abroad, visited Sochi between October 10 and 12 for Russia’s first ever Formula One Grand Prix.

Live television coverage of the race in Sochi, which was provided by Russia’s Rossiya-2 channel, watched 3.4 million people across Russia and it was three times as many comparing with the figure of Russian viewers watching on the average other F1 Grand Prix races.

Earlier in the year Sochi Autodrom, the organizer of the racing event, was awarded the trophy of the Formula One’s best racing track in the 2014 season. The decision to award Sochi the 2014 Race Promoters' Trophy was made at the annual FIA Gala ceremony on December 5, 2014 in Doha, Qatar, and the trophy was officially awarded to Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak by Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone on December 19.

The Race Promoters' Trophy is a rotating award and engraved on it are the names of other F1 best racing tracks starting from 1975. The trophy will remain in Sochi throughout 2015 until the new best racing track will be announced at the end of the next season.

Last October, FIA also issued a license for the Moscow Raceway circuit, a racing track outside the Russian capital, officially confirming the track as suitable for hosting Formula One races.

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