Formula 1 races into the world of esports via Gfinity and Codemasters

Rufina Vignone
Agosto 21, 2017

Formula One is finally stepping into the esports ring.

Formula One is the latest motorsport to run an officially licenced esports series, with Dorna owned MotoGP starting a tournament this year with Sony and the Milestone developed MotoGP 17, and a continued presence for the World Rally Championship (WRC) which is now in its second year of competetive esports with the KT Racing developed WRC 6.

The premise is simple enough.

The series is to be in three stages, starting with qualification events through next month to determine the 40 quickest virtual drivers, and run on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Windows PC platforms. Semi-finals will take place at London's Gfinity Arena on October 10 and 11, where the field will be whittled down to the top 20 drivers.

The victor will be crowned the Formula 1 esports World Champion, and will also be offered the chance to be the esports champions expert for the 2018 tournament.

McLaren is already involved in the gaming world with its own World's Fastest Gamer contest.

"This launch presents an incredible opportunity for our business: strategically and in the way we engage fans", said Formula One commercial operations managing director, Sean Bratches.

In New York in July, Formula E livestreamed over mobile phones a virtual race between gamers and race drivers for fans around the world to watch. It's a growing category with tremendous fan engagement that we're entering in a big way. "Of course as we do in Formula 1, we'll continue to innovate in the way we run this virtual counterpart to the F1 Championship to ensure we provide an exciting and enjoyable experience". Esports Insider says: The fast paced and thrilling nature of Formula 1 and the official F1 2017 game means that the expansion into esports is potentially an exciting partnership.

The series itself has now jumped on the bandwagon, announcing its new series on the official F1 2017 game on Monday morning. The victor, Dutch virtual racer Bono Huis, scooped a $200,000 prize.

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