2024 Hyderabad E-Prix may get cancelled, Formula E’s Indian future in jeopardy

The recent shift in the political sphere of Telangana has put up an obstacle in the way of the Hyderabad E-Prix. We take a look at what it means
The Hyderabad E-Prix is scheduled to happen on Feb 10, 2024.
The Hyderabad E-Prix is scheduled to happen on Feb 10, 2024.Formula E

In a dramatic turn of events, the fate of the much-anticipated Hyderabad E-Prix, scheduled for February 10, 2024, hangs in the balance. Just weeks before the scheduled date, Formula E released a statement saying it is possible that the event may not take place as planned. It didn’t reveal specific details about the obstructions but a press release put out by Formula E stated, “Following a recent official communication received from the new Government of Telangana, Formula E is seeking urgent clarification of their contractual commitments under the agreement and how it could impact the Hyderabad race. Based on the content of the letter received, Formula E is concerned the race will not be able to go ahead as planned”.

According to Formula E, its senior executive team engaged in discussions with the new leadership of the Telangana government immediately after the recent elections. However, despite ongoing dialogues since then, clarity on the situation remains elusive. Formula E also claimed that with the event merely weeks away and already in its final stages of preparation, Formula E, its partners, and suppliers have made substantial commercial investments.

Although a global motorsport event like this means a huge economic benefit for the host city (Rs 698 crore gain for Hyderabad in season 9), the significance of the Hyderabad E-Prix extends beyond its economic impact in the Indian context. As the only official FIA World Championship event scheduled in India next year, it holds immense importance in maintaining India's standing on the global motorsport stage making it crucial not only for Formula E but also for India. Moreover, the event's success is instrumental in attracting the attention of other esteemed world championships. The ability to host a seamless and successful motorsport event of this magnitude in Hyderabad would undoubtedly bolster India's reputation, potentially paving the way for consideration from other championships (MotoGP being a good example) considering India as a venue. Hyderabad's inclusion in the roster alongside iconic cities like Tokyo, Shanghai, Berlin, and London signifies the city's emergence as a vital player in the international motorsport circuit. But this unexpected development has cast uncertainty over the event.

Although there’s a lot of support from the Indian motorsport fan base for the Hyderabad E-Prix to go ahead as intended, tensions so close to the scheduled date have raised some concerns. We hope for the situation to be resolved soon as it is significant, not just for the immediate staging of the Hyderabad E-Prix but also for India's position in the global motorsport landscape.

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