10 Reasons Why Adelaide Should Host the Electric ‘Formula E’ Racing Series

Formula E is an all-electric motorsport series, similar to Formula 1, which has grown in popularity since its inaugural championship in 2014. Adelaide has repeatedly been suggested as a potential host city for the event in Australia and we at The Australia Institute think it’s time to make it official.

Here are 10 reasons why Adelaide should become a Formula E host city.

Jean-Eric Vergne (DS TECHEETAH) and Antonio Felix da Costa (DS TECHEETAH), Diriyah E-Prix — Credit: Courtesy of Formula E

1 // South Australia is the renewable energy powerhouse of Australia

Last year South Australia secured 60% of its electricity from renewable sources, such as solar and wind, making the state a world-leading renewable energy powerhouse. That strong transition to renewables has also put significant downward pressure on power prices in the state, regularly leading to South Australia having the lowest average wholesale electricity prices in the country.

South Australia’s reputation as a world leading provider of clean, green, renewable energy could be enhanced and broadcast to the world by bringing the all-electric racing series Formula E to the state.

2 // South Australians feel the buzz for Formula E

Australia Institute research has shown that South Australians back the idea of bringing Formula E to Adelaide. More than half (51%) of South Australians want Adelaide to host a fully electric Formula E Championship race, while just 11% of people oppose the idea. South Australians believe that hosting the race would be a positive thing for the state.

· 50% think hosting the race would promote Adelaide and increase tourism.

· 42% think it would increase interest in electric vehicles in South Australia.

· 35% think it would attract investment to the state.

Sam Bird (Virgin Racing Formula E), Visa London ePrix — Credit: LAT/Formula E

3 // Business backs the idea too

A series of prominent business leaders, from GFG Alliance CEO Sanjeev Gupta to Business SA CEO Martin Haese, have supported the call to bring Formula E to Adelaide.

In November of 2020 The Australia Institute, backed by a range of South Australian business and community organisations, took out a full page advertisement calling for Adelaide to become a host city for the Formula E.

4 // Electric vehicles are the exhilarating future of transport

Formula E cars are renowned for their speed off the line, accelerating from 0–100km/h in just 2.8 seconds. With a top speed of 280km/h, the cars are perfectly designed for thrilling, wheel to wheel racing on tight and twisty, inner-city street circuits.

The technology will only continue to improve over coming years, as it already has in the seven years of the championship, and EVs are guaranteed to become more popular over time. Getting in early and cementing Adelaide’s reputation as the renewable energy and electric transport capital of Australia will be a good thing for the city and South Australia.

Credit: LAT/Formula E

5 // Hosting Formula E will put Adelaide on a growing global stage

Global viewership of Formula E is rising. Fast.

Before COVID-19 disrupted international sporting events, the 2018–19 season saw a significant increase in the viewership for the relatively young Formula E championship. Organisers reported at the time that the cumulative attendance across the 13 races of the season eclipsed 400,000, up 9% compared to the previous year, and total TV viewership was 411 million, up 25%.

But the biggest growth area for Formula E is online. With 72% of followers aged under 35 and 42% of videos being viewed by fans under the age of 25, Formula E is among the highest-performing sports platforms on the planet for young people in the digital space.

6 // It will promote South Australia as a global tourism destination

As a Formula E host, Adelaide would be put alongside some of the most celebrated cities in the world including London, New York, Rome, Paris and Berlin.

Even the iconic Formula 1 destination of Monaco is a Formula E host city.

Showing Adelaide and South Australia as a clean, green destination to millions of Formula E fans across the globe would be fantastic promotion for the state as a major tourism draw card.

Racing action, New York City E-Prix — Credit: LAT/Formula E

7 // Formula E has been carbon neutral, from the beginning

The Formula E Championship is the first global sport to achieve a net zero carbon footprint from inception, investing in certified climate-protecting projects in all race markets to offset emissions from electric racing.

Hosting Formula E in Adelaide will show South Australia and the rest of the country just what can be achieved in the future as we reduce our carbon pollution.

Australia Institute research has shown that global warming will have profound impacts on people, industries and ecosystems in Adelaide. CSIRO and Bureau of Meteorology projections estimate that the average number of days over 35 degrees could increase by 180% by 2090, without strong climate policies.

8 // Hosting the Formula E is less disruptive than other motorsport events

Formula E races are held on city street circuits, so that they can deliver world-class motorsport direct to the fans and eliminate the need to build costly new infrastructure.

Also, the relatively quick set up and pack down of the race infrastructure, combined with the fact that all qualifying and racing takes place on a single day, means less disruption for the residents of host cities when compared to other, more intrusive events.

9 // South Australians are mad about their cars

South Australia’s rich motorsport pedigree is unrivalled in Australia.

Adelaide has a proud history of hosting major, world-class motor sporting events, from the bygone Formula 1 Grand Prix on its world famous street circuit to the recently discontinued Adelaide 500 V8 Supercars.

South Australia is also home to the largest tarmac rally in the southern hemisphere and the second longest permanent race circuit in the world, The Bend Motorsport Park.

Formula E would help to ensure that Adelaide’s love affair with motorsport can carry on long into the future.

10 // And finally, revenge…

It was a dark day for many South Australians when Melbourne stole the Australian Grand Prix from Adelaide in 1996.

Well, they can keep it, because now it’s time for revenge!

By becoming the Australian host city for the revolutionary, all electric Formula E, Adelaide will be looking to the future and staking its claim to the premier motorsport of tomorrow.

You can support the effort to bring Formula E to Australia by signing The Australia Institute’s petition here > https://nb.tai.org.au/formula_e

an independent think-tank based in Canberra > australia.org.au

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