In my eyes Formula E is misunderstood. Most of it’s critics come from those that are only used to watching Formula One, often those of an older generation that have seen F1 evolve in to what it is today, these same people are the ones that would often oppose any new rule changes within the sport.
Formula E is not trying to be F1 in any way. In my view you shouldn’t have to back just one or the other, it is trying to be unique, innovative and experimental. Granted, some of these new ideas may seem a bit strange, such as online fan voting to give chosen drivers a boost during the race, or to have music in the grandstands while the race is on. Don’t forget that this is a sport that is trying to build a new fanbase, in particular younger fans who interact more digitally. What ideas like these do is to help drive fans to the website and gain support for the drivers, while the idea of music has an element of the Gran Turismo series to it.
For me, Formula One will still be the pinnacle of single seater and sports championship racing because of the spectacle, high performance technology, the engulfing presence and showcase that is put on at any race, all couple with vast worldwide popularity. Formula E can provide an alternative to Formula One, with unique rules and initiatives to increase fan support that F1 could learn from. Many drivers rising through the feeder series such as GP2 and GP3 that simply just don’t have the means (or funds) to gain an F1 seat on merit could use Formula E as an option to showcase their talents worldwide, and we have already seen that with drivers like Sam Bird, Daniel Abt and Antonio Felix da Costa. Even current F1 fans can embrace the series by using it as a chance to see drivers that have left the sport, such as Bruno Senna, Nick Heidfeld and Jaime Alguersuari getting another chance in single seater racing.
I for one will be attending Formula E when it comes to London in June 2015, I’m looking forward to having a race practically on my doorstep, and I’m hoping that when it comes to race day the sport will be more accessible and cheaper than what F1 currently is for fans – just two points to name a few that is used to explain lower attendance figures.