Formula E’s 11 teams and 22 drivers will face a whole-new challenge at the Jakarta International E-Prix Circuit. It’s a purpose-built racetrack which brings all the best elements of street racing to picturesque Ancol Beach – South East Asia’s largest park, which welcomes some 40,000 visitors a day. Unique banked sections, undulations, bumps and a mix of technical and high speed sections will throw up a real test.
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The clockwise 2.37km, 18-turn circuit - inspired by the Kuda Lumping or Flat Horse, a traditional Javanese dance - kicks off with a tight opening sector after a long run down the start/finish straight. Theres plenty of room for manoeuvre into the right-hander at Turn 1 before drivers head into a flowing series of turns that swoop by Ancol Beach City. The final sector is a tricky complex following a quick right at Turn 12 and another long straight into what will no doubt be a busy Turn 13 hairpin come the race. An awkward left-hander at Turn 18 rounds out the lap with a strong slingshot required down thatlong home straight.
Tough conditions and a real equaliser
"Every time there's a new track, it's a good equaliser, especially for the slightly less experienced guys," says Mahindra Racing's Oliver Rowland. "For me, I like to go to places that I know now because I'm becoming more and more experienced, but I think mentally, it's like any other, you do your preparation, and you go there and do your best."
"At Jakarta there are lots of flowing corners with one corner going into the next and into the next," adds Rowland's teammate Alexander Sims. "This means it will be important to get on top of the driving aspect quickly and get into a rhythm. Mess up on one corner and it’ll throw the whole lap!”
The Formula E field reacts to Jakarta's new racetrack
"I think a lot of things will be in play," adds Envision Racing driver Robin Frijns. "Temperature on tyres, temperature on battery, and obviously the energy will always play a big role. So, I think there's a lot of different scenarios which can happen and we need to focus on all of them."
READ MORE: Preview: Everything you need to know ahead of the Jakarta E-Prix
"I love that we get to go to new locations, new circuits, new cities," adds double champion Jean-Eric Vergne (DS TECHEETAH). "I hope it's going to be a nice track like we love racing at like Rome. I'm not sure I'm looking forward to the heat and humidity, especially at this time of year, it's going to be intense."
"I'm very much looking forward to it - we haven't been to Asia in a while," added reigning champion Nyck de Vries. "The track layout looks very appealing - quite fast, not so many tight corners and quite flowing, which is always a good experience for a driver when there is a nice flow in the track layout. I'm not fully sure where the best overtaking opportunities will be, but in Formula E, there will always be some. It's an event I'm really looking forward to, for sure."
The Jakarta E-Prix International Circuit from above
“The Jakarta circuit has a good mixture of low, medium and high-speed corners and will test every aspect of car performance," says 2016/17 champion Lucas di Grassi (ROKiT Venturi Racing). "It is very tight and technical and embodies what Formula E and street circuit racing is all about. At this stage, we have done some good preparation in the simulator but we need to verify this work in practice."
Formula E's return to Asia
Formula E has been a regular in Asia since the championship’s inaugural 2014/15 campaign, with 16 races at five locations so far in the region – including its first-ever and landmark 50th round taking place on the continent, with the Jakarta E-Prix marking the championship's return to the continent, with Seoul set to follow, rounding out Season 8.
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The circuit's development is aimed at leaving a lasting legacy in the city, breathing new life into Ancol Beach and kickstarting the city’s post-pandemic tourism comeback. City authorities have also earmarked the location as a potential centre for innovation as Indonesia drives towards a complete EV transition by 2050.
The event will be 100% powered by sustainably-sourced HVO and as ever in the world’s first net zero sport, it’s a net zero carbon event. Formula E will measure, reduce, and offset all its unavoidable emissions by investing in renewable energy production.