LONDON – Mayor of London Boris Johnson has expressed his desire to bring an FIA Formula E race to the city every year after trying out one of the cars ahead of this weekend’s season finale.
Johnson played a pivotal role in securing an ePrix in London’s Battersea Park, which will play host to two races this weekend as the inaugural Formula E campaign comes to a close.
In an entertaining publicity event on Friday, Johnson got behind the wheel of the Spark-Renault SRT_01E car for a lap of the circuit, running behind a safety car.
Speaking to reporters just minutes after getting out of the car, the Mayor spoke about the experience and praised series CEO Alejandro Agag for his involvement in setting up the championship.
“It was amazing, amazing!” Johnson said. “I thought I hit a squirrel at one stage but he was quite nimble.
“It’s a wonderful event for London and I congratulate Formula E and Alejandro for everything they’ve done.
“Wandsworth [council] have played a blinder in getting it here in Battersea and let’s make sure we have it every year.”
Johnson also praised the series for the way in which it publicizes electric vehicles, believing it to embody the bid to make London a greener city and reduce carbon emissions.
“What it showcases is our drive to get low carbon vehicles on the street,” Johnson said.
“We’re going to have an ultra-low emission zone in the heart of the city by 2020, taxis by 2018, buses are some of the greenest in the world and it’s part of our campaign to get London electric.”
This weekend’s race in London is the first motorsport event in the capital in over 40 years, and it is shaping up to be one of the highlights of the inaugural Formula E season as one of six drivers is crowned champion.