Esports weekend: When and where to watch the action

After last weekend’s frantic action that took place across all platforms from Monaco to Berlin to Indianapolis, we’ve earmarked just three virtual motorsports events today and tomorrow.

Here’s the schedule:

©FormulaE

Race at Home Challenge: Round 6 of the ABB Formula E sim series which helps raise money for UNICEF’s coronavirus relief fund swoosh into action on the streets of Brooklyn in the heart of the Red Hook neighborhood. Nissan e.dams’ Oliver Rowland will be out to try and emulate his winning performance in Berlin last week, but championship contenders Pascal Wehrlein, Stoffel Vandoorne and Maximilian Guenther will be doing their to make sure that doesn’t happen. The big story this week on the FE front was the firing of Daniel Abt by Audi following the German driver’s ill-advised ringer scheme that blew up in his face in Berlin. It’s unfortunate for the talented 27-year-old, but Audi’s decision goes to show that racers are being held to the same high standards in the Esports arena as they are in the real world.

When: Saturday, at 3:30pm UK time (10:30am EST – 4:30pm CET).

Venue: Hong Kong – rFactor2

The field: All 24 regular Formula E drivers are scheduled to take part in the event.

Channel: Formula E website, Youtube, Facebook, Twitch


The Race All-Star Series: The Torque Esports-run series will occupy the latter part of Saturday and will, as usual, begin with its Legends Trophy segment of its program. After last week’s epic battle between Fernando Alonso at Indianapolis, the veterans will return to a classic track and car combo, which has yet to be announced.

Round 6 of the main All Star event – the Pro Cup – will once again include teams from Mercedes, BMW, Bentley and Aston Martin and a vast selection of pro racers.

When: Saturday 5pm UK time (12pm EST – 6pm CET)

Venue: TBA – rFactor2

The field: The Pro Cup series will feature a collection of drivers from the single-seater, GT and endurance categories, while the Legends trophy is set to include the likes of Jenson Button, Jan Magnussen, Emanuele Pirro, Emerson Fittipaldi, Dario Franchitti and Juan Pablo Montoya.

Channel: YouTube, ESPN, Eurosport


©SRO

SRO E-Sport GT Series: The SRO E-Sport GT Series enters a crucial phase this weekend with a trio of one-hour races setting the virtual championship up for its deciding battle. The multi-event competition features real-world drivers (Pro Series), leading sim racers (Silver Series) and public qualifiers (Am Series) using Assetto Corsa Competizione, the official video game of SRO Motorsports Group. Once the initial championship is decided the best performers from each class will progress to a winner-takes-all grand finale. Among the wildcards that will join the grid in Barcelona will be McLaren boss Zak Brown at the wheel of the brand’s 720S.

When: Sunday 13:00pm UK time (07:00pm EST – 14:00pm CET)

Venue: Barcelona – Assetto Corsa Competizione

The field: A host of pro GT racers.

Channel: GT World YouTube, SRO Motorsports Twitch and Facebook pages

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Norris: Esports a breeding ground for future F1 drivers

McLaren’s Lando Norris believes Esports could produce Formula 1 drivers in future, but don’t for a minute think they can go straight from Esports to F1.

The Formula 1 eSports Series was founded in 2017 with 2018 the first full season with Brendon Leigh winning the title and Mercedes walking away with the Constructors’ Championship.

Following the success of the first two editions, the prize money for the 2019 installment was increased to $500,000.

Norris has made no secret of the fact that he is obsessed with Esports and the 20-year-old, who competes in sim racing for Team Redline, believes the sport be a breeding ground for future F1 drivers.

“In the future I think you can get people who start in Esports and come over,” he told Racefans.net.

“I don’t think they can go straight from Esports to Formula 1, they would have to still do some steps: F3, F2 and so on. But I think there’s already been some drivers who have proved that having skills on the simulator can translate very well onto the actual race track.

“The better the simulators get and everything then the higher the chance of something like that happening.”

The F1 rookie believes the real benefit from eSports is the fact that you can put in plenty of hours at home.

“You can obviously test a lot more in Esports than you can doing real testing and real driving. The thing you realise with some of the good drivers like Daniel [Bereznay, Alfa Romeo F1 Esports driver] and all of the Esports are the hours that they put in,” he added.

“The days of testing, every day for weeks, that’s the impressive thing. And that’s what you need to be able to do is constantly adjust the setup, improve your driving compared to your team mates and do that for weeks, basically.

“That’s the impressive thing and even for me to see someone who spends so much time trying to find hundredths and thousandths and so on, that’s what makes them so good.”

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