Plans are still at a formative stage, and the current outline is for something of a novelty series – but Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta has now confirmed talks are already in progress with more than one interested supplier. Some reports suggest as many as four manufacturers are interested, but Ezpeleta has confirmed that it will be a one-make series with identical machines.
One aspect of the plan that has filled the paddock with doubt is Ezpeleta’s assertion that the riders will be drawn from MotoGP and Moto2 classes. Teams reacted with surprise at the notion that they would be prepared to release contracted riders to take part in an inevitably risky novelty race.
Ezpeleta has mooted 18 entries, at least five events and, unlike the four-wheeled Formula E which uses carbon-neutral glycerin generators to supply recharging power for the car batteries, an even more environmentally friendly formula is planned, with power for the two-wheeled series provided using solar panels which will be installed at the actual circuits.
Ezpeleta has suggested 10-lap races, and while the sound will be lacking, the speed will not. In seven years of the TT Zero race at the Isle of Man, the pace has increased exponentially.
On the positive side, times have changed, and improving battery technology and growing interest might make the difference by 2019. Around the same time Thailand wants to host the MotoGP, and needless to say we have enough sunshine to power a few e-bikes...