Formula One welcomes gamers from around the world as it launches eSports world championship
By: S.Harding, Xiro Xone News August 21, 2017 Updated: 5:44 PM
This year Formula One’s new administration have created new and innovative additions to the sport such as the F1 Live event in London last month as well as their growing presence on social media as a way to expand the reach of F1 to a broader audience. Today, this continues with the launch of Formula 1® Esports Series.
The series will work in partnership with Codemasters, developers of the upcoming F12017 game and Gfinity and the global leader in esports events and competitions.
The 2017 F1 Esport Series will be an annual competition as the sport embraces the world of esports, which will provide F1 with a platform to reach an untapped demographic, younger fans.
The competition will consist of Qualification events. These events will take place in September. Forty drivers will be chosen and will progress to the semifinal events, and from there the top 20 will progress to the Finals, which will take place at the Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November.
The winner of the championship will automatically qualify for the semifinals of next year’s F1 Esports Series.
Esports (electronic sports) have grown over the years and has earned their place in the world of sports with the market generating well over $325 million in revenue and an audience of 226 million people, with 80% under the age of 35.
As F1 steps into the eSport racing arena it could become another platform which has created an inroad for inspiring young drivers. Playstation’s Gran Turismo Academy and Xbox’s Forza Racing Championship (ForzaRC) have been highly successful in allowing players to compete for a real-life opportunity for a professional career in motorsports.
Managing Director, Commercial Operations for Formula 1 Sean Bratches, said: “This launch presents an amazing opportunity for our business: strategically and in the way we engage fans. First, it’s a growing category with tremendous fan engagement that we’re entering in a big way; and we are proud to have Codemasters and Gfinity joining us on this ride. Of course as we do in Formula 1, we’ll continue to evolve and innovate in the way we run this virtual counterpart to the F1 Championship to ensure we provide the most exciting and enjoyable experience we can for our fans.”
Codemasters CEO Frank Sagnier, said: “Esports is one of the fastest growing sectors of gaming already attracting audiences in the tens of millions. We are delighted to be announcing this incredible racing series with Formula 1 for our upcoming F1 2017 game. The highly competitive nature and high-speed spectacle of the sport combined with the authenticity of our game will provide a thrilling experience for players and viewers across the world. We look forward to engaging more deeply with our loyal and passionate community, and to bring new fans to both our game and the sport itself."
F12017 will put players behind the wheel of one of the most technologically advanced racing cars in the world, provide an in-depth career mode, and make available a list of classic F1 cars. Formula One’s latest announcement couldn’t have come at a better time and continues to show the new administration’s positive progress in this new era in F1.