After the announcement that São Paulo would not host an ePrix in Season 4, rumours have emerged that Punta del Este will replace it as the sixth round of the championship. Local Uruguayan authorities say Formula E is likely to return.
Following last week’s announcement that São Paulo was out of the Season 4 calendar, many questions have been raised about which venue would replace the Brazilian city. The possibility of a European race becoming a double header was within the options, and so was the chance of Formula E returning to Uruguay.
The fully-electric championship visited Uruguay twice – in 2014 and 2015. The race was held in the coastal city of Punta del Este, known as the ‘South American Monaco’ for the luxury and popularity of the region. Shortly after the 2015 race took place, it was announced that the venue would not be featured in the Season 3 calendar, due to financial differences with the Uruguayan government.
With rumours emerging that the beach-side race might be making a comeback, Just Electric has learnt that local authorities see it as “likely to happen, but still awaiting confirmation”. A spokesperson from the Automóvil Club del Uruguay (Uruguayan Automobile Club), expressed that a return was something they had always been working on.
Another well-known source in the Uruguayan racing community commented that drivers are enthusiastic to go back racing in Punta del Este, but it is still subject to confirmation as to whether the race will take place in the South American country.
It has been reported that teams have been informed about a potential race on Uruguayan soil, after São Paulo’s departure from the calendar. An alternative for the Brazilian race – which has been put off to 2019 – should be confirmed at the FIA World Motor Sport Council next week.
Punta del Este saw Sébastien Buemi obtain his first Formula E victory, a feat that he repeated one year later. Jean-Éric Vergne made his debut in the series there in 2014, securing pole position and leading the race, before having to retire. The Uruguayan city also witnessed Nelson Piquet Jr. finish on the podium for the first time on his road to his Formula E championship.