London to host inaugural Formula 1 Esports Series semifinals next week
London – The world’s fastest virtual Formula 1 drivers will descend on the Gfinity Arena in London on 10th October in a race to qualify for the inaugural Formula 1â Esports Series World Final in Abu Dhabi.
The F1 Esports Series is a partnership between Formula 1, the world’s premier motor sport; Codemasters, the leading racing game developer and publisher; and Gfinity, the global leader in esports events and competitions.
The 2017 F1 Esport Series is the first year of an annual competition, highlighting the sport’s long-term investment in esports and gaming as well as its continued ambition to build a greater connection with wider audiences, especially younger fans.
The launch of the competition has coincided with the release of the official F1™ 2017 game allowing gamers to get closer to Formula 1 than ever before.
Released worldwide on PlayStation® 4 computer entertainment system, Xbox One and Windows PC (DVD and via Steam) on August 25th, F1 2017 is the most feature rich game in the franchise’s history and the new F1 Esport Series will be open to players on all three platforms.
The 40 semi-finalists reached the London event through a series of qualifying rounds which were held over the past few weeks. 15 of them earned a place in the final, tackling a virtual race around Monza between 4th and 11th September, while others reached the final by racing on an equally famous Formula 1 track, Suzuka, between the 18th and 26th of last month. Ten of the 30 competitors qualified on line through the PS4 platform, ten the Xbox One and ten PC Windows.
Nine drivers reached the semi-finals from the F1 2017 Affiliated leagues, held using all platforms from the 8th to 28th September. This was an invitation-only series, made up of the best league racers from AOR, FIT, Racestarsnl& Team Redline.
The 40th semi-finalist is a wildcard entry, selected by a vote from an independent panel, including former F1 driver David Coulthard, based on ability, skill and knowledge of esports.
A total of 63,827 drivers took part in the qualifying stages, completing 976,870 laps. Over 195,000 race times were posted on the official leaderboards (f1esports.com.)
Frank Arthofer, Director of Digital and New Business at Formula 1 said:
“We are very pleased to see how successful this first edition of the F1 Esports Series has been. The number of participants exceeded our initial predictions, which confirms how much interest there is in Formula 1 within esports, a sector that is undergoing phenomenal growth. We can’t wait for the semi-finals in London to produce the fastest 20 competitors who will go on to battle for the first ever F1 Esport Series World Championship title.”
The F1 esports semi-final, which will be shown live on the official F1 Twitch and Facebook accounts and streamd on f1esports.com, will consist of four heats and will use the Silverstone and Interlagos circuits. The first five drivers of each heat will progress to the Finals, which will take place at the Yas Marina as part of the 2017 FORMULA 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on 24th and 25th November. At the end of a three-race event, the first Formula 1 Esports World Champion will be crowned on the same weekend as the final 2017 Formula 1 Grand Prix.
Alongside the pride and prestige of being the first ever champion, the winner will also be the Formula 1 Esports Champion Expert for 2018 and will automatically qualify for the semifinals of next year’s Esports Series. The first winner will also be offered the opportunity to live the full experience of a Formula 1 race by attending one of the 2018 Grand Prix, as well as becoming a character in the F1™ 2018 game: a timeless reminder of his or her’s accomplishment.
The 40 semi-finalists come from 16 different countries: UK is the most represented with 8 drivers. The youngest driver is 16 years, the oldest 33.
These are their names
|Nicolas Annerose||France||Marcel Kiefer||Germany|
|Miguel Ballester||Spain||Patryk Krutyj||Poland|
|Maximilian Benecke||Germany||Amos Laurito||Italy|
|Daniel Bereznay||Hungary||Brendon Leigh||UK|
|Patrik Blazsan||Hungary||Pino Macrì||Italy|
|Cem Bölükbasi||Turkey||Connor McDonagh||UK|
|Tiziano Brioni||Italy||Olli Pakhala||Finland|
|Graham Carroll||UK||Isaac Price||UK|
|Giuseppe De Fuoco||Italy||Frederik Rasmussen||Denmark|
|Fabrizio Donoso Delgado||Chile||Jonas Rutten||Germany|
|Sebastian Dunkel||Netherlands||Salih Saltunc||UK|
|Nicolò Fioroni||Italy||Sonuc Saltunc||UK|
|Alberto Foltran||Italy||Rosario Sinacori||Italy|
|Daniel Forrester||UK||Mads Soerensen||Denmark|
|Igor Fraga||Brazil||Thibault Suner||France|
|Nestor Garcia Valle||Spain||Jarl Teien||Norway|
|Gianfranco Giglioli||Italy/Venezuela||Cedric Thome||Germany|
|Christoph Holstein||Switzerland||Joni Törmälä||Finland|
|Patrik Holzmann||Germany||Allert Vanderwal||Netherlands|
|Harrison Jacks||UK||Sven Zürner||Germany|