The Circuit Ricardo Tormo was subsequently selected to host two E-Prix during the 2020/21 ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, with a modified version of the Nation Circuit hosting the inaugural Valencia E-Prix on 24 April 2021.
The Circuit Ricardo Tormo is one of the newer circuits in the Motorsport world, having officially opened on the 19th September 1999. Originally built to host MotoGP, and named in honour of Spain’s greatest motorcyclist Ricardo Tormo, the Circuit de Valencia has since grown to be one of Spain’s biggest sporting venues.
Bikes and Beyond
Having been built in a near-natural amphitheatre, the Circuit Ricardo Tormo quickly became notable for the fact that everyone of its 65,000 grand stand seats could see the entire circuit. Further expansions to the seating have seen the capacity rise to over 120,000, while warm winter temperatures mean that, according to the owners, the circuit could be used for 95% of the year. To cement this, the organisers have secured a long-term contract with MotoGP, and have hosted the final race of every season since 2002.
The circuit would quickly become a favourite for Formula One teams too, with frequent visits to the circuit made in the early 2000s for winter testing. When private testing was largely outlawed from F1, the circuit survived, picking up contracts for major series such as GT1, Formula 3 and the DTM, although the circuit continued to be dominated by the motorcycle calendar. A solitary visit by the ELMS was also made, while the World Touring Car Championship had a relatively long stay in the mid to late 2000s.
Formula E History
Donington Park had been established as the Formula E headquarters in 2014, and had been used as the testing centre for the series across all three seasons. However, a desire from the teams to test in warmer climates, on a circuit closer to one typically used during the season, saw the FIA agree to move the series’ only pre-season test. The swap to the Circuit Ricardo Tormo would be announced in September 2017, with the first Valencia Test to be held on the 2nd to the 5th October, 2017.
The ten Formula E teams in 2017/18 agreed to use the “National” circuit at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo, with a chicane added to the start/finish straight to better reflect a typical street circuit.
The addition of a chicane to the main start/finish straight would allow the FE cars to charge their batteries on the brakes, before sweeping into the original turn one “Aspar”. A blast up to the hairpin “Doohan” follows, before a kink leads the cars into the 90° “Nico Terol”.
Two long apex turns follow, with another kink bringing the cars into the shortcut that forms the National Circuit. A long chicane forms the shortcut, before the cars rejoin the full circuit half way around the 180° turn 13, which tightens into the final turn, “Adrián Campos”.
E-Prix Update 2021
Ahead of the Circuit Ricardo Tormo’s debut as an official E-Prix circuit the circuit layout was modified to both adapt the circuit more towards FE’s needs, but also to make it different from the circuit used during testing. To achieve this a service road was used to link turn eight on the full circuit to the final sector, creating a tight hairpin corner that became turn nine, followed by another sharp right of turn ten. The drivers would then exit the final corner before entering a right-left chicane, which then eased back onto the start/finish straight.
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Circuit Ricardo Tormo
|Name||Circuit Ricardo Tormo|
|Major events||Fanatec GTWC, E-prix FIA Formula E World Championship,|
|Circuit length||3.376 km|