Rome could host a round of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship until 2022 after series boss Alejandro Agag announced plans for a five-year deal for the event yesterday.
Agag made the announcement from the podium alongside Mayor of Rome Virginia Raggi after a successful first Rome E-Prix.
Saturday’s race saw a huge crowd at the 1.77-mile Circuto Cittadino dell’EUR track and was watched by 1.2 million viewers on Mediaset in Italy with a nine percent TV share, according to the Formula E communications team.
Luca Filippi, who was the only Italian driver in the 20-car field, was pleasantly surprised that so many fans embraced the first ever Rome E-Prix last weekend.
The NIO driver finished the race in 13th position and believes that Formula E has laid “a great foundation” for a new generation of fans who were previously only interested in traditional motorsport.
“Italy was one of the first countries to promote and embrace motorsport since it began, so we have a great history of traditional motorsport,” Filippi told e-racing365.
“Because of this I was a little bit afraid that the people would be too much in love with the tradition of motorsport and so I thought not everyone would understand this new series.
“But I was surprised because the tickets sales were fantastic and the attendance was amazing and the fans terrific. The Emotion Club was packed and grid was amazing, so it was an incredible weekend.”
Filippi, who attended several events in the Allianz E-Village and Formula E corporate hospitality area, known as the Emotion Club, noticed a difference in the fans that attended the inaugural Rome E-Prix.
“There were not only the typical fans that you see at Monza or Mugello but we saw new fans, young people here who were interested in racing here in the city,” he said.
“It is a fresh fanbase that has been born and I am sure they enjoyed the spectacle and we can keep them for next year and for years after that.”
The Rome E-Prix was a sold-out event and many more fans were seen watching from adjoining bridges and grass banks on the periphery of the circuit in the EUR district of the Italian capital.