The paddock on Cape Town: 'Groundbreaking, spectacular, no better backdrop'

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The paddock on Cape Town: 'Groundbreaking, spectacular, no better backdrop'

We're here for our first race in Cape Town, and it's fair to say there's a buzz in the paddock. There's little debate it's one of the best backdrops of any racetrack we've seen, but what else can we expect from the ultra high-speed Cape Town Street Circuit?

Cape Town electric

Kelvin van der Linde, ABT CUPRA: 'This event can be a real showcase'

"It’s great to be here. I was here in December over the off-season and the last thing on my mind was that I would be racing here. The preparation at that point in time was me being the reserve driver and not on racing here.

"Since landing in Cape Town, it’s been amazing. The reception from the local guys here has been amazing and my schedule has been absolutely packed. I’m actually looking forward to getting on-track and Shakedown – it might be the most relaxing part of the weekend so far.

WATCH: Don't miss a minute of the Cape Town E-Prix

"Cape Town is an iconic city and fits in with the other world cities we go to perfectly. From everything I’ve heard from drivers, teams, mechanics and everybody else in the paddock – they love it here and I’ve not heard a bad word from anyone here.

Cape Town

"For the championship itself, I think it’s ground-breaking. There hasn’t been World Championship single-seater motorsport here for a while and this event can be a real showcase for the country and the city on the world stage."

James Barclay, Jaguar TCS Racing Team Principal: 'What better backdrop?'

"Having grown up in this part of the world, it’s amazing to be here. The last World Championship race here was in 1993 – which in a motorsport country is an age. Everyone here loves their racing and it’s definitely been missed.

READ MORE: The full Cape Town preview

"For everyone here, there’s a huge amount of excitement and that’s really, really positive with people flying in from all over the country to be here.

"What better backdrop, right? We’re probably in one of the best amphitheatres in the world here, with views of one of the seven natural wonders of the world.


"So, everything’s set for it to be a fantastic race. It’s completely unlike anything else we’ve been too – it’s really fast and it’s going to be a big test of commitment. We haven’t seen anything that’s quite as quick as we’re going to see here in terms of speed and performance."

James Rossiter, Maserati MSG Racing Team Principal: 'Seriously exciting; very challenging'

"You're gonna get some seriously exciting laps. I mean, I stood behind the simulator watching the guys drive it, and the track looks absolutely epic. A lot of high speed corners, gonna be very, very challenging. So yeah, it's gonna be an exciting one this weekend."

Sacha Fenestraz, Nissan: 'It's going to be tricky'

"It’s going to be a tricky one for the drivers. It’s just a string of really high speed corners through Turns 2, 3, 8 and 9. The most similar we’ve seen to those kinds of corners are in Valencia but that’s a whole different story and a very flat surface [JEV: And there are no walls there!].

Nissan Cape Town

"We honestly don’t know what to expect. It’s one thing going around in the simulator and learning and that gives you an idea but it’s quite different to what you feel in reality. So, we’ll see how it goes but it’s going to be tricky."

Jean-Eric Vergne, DS PENSKE: 'We don't know what to expect'

"We don’t know what to expect. We haven’t got much to compare with the speed of corners here – maybe Valencia Turn 1? But there, it’s quite flat and it’s difficult here with right-lefts. I come here with little expectation – just to be patient on our side and trying to maximise what we have.

"It’s not about being brave. If you’re being brave, you’re doing something unexpected or out of the ordinary. If you’ve got everything under control then it’s not about bravery."