After a thrilling season for the F1 Esports Challengers Series, the final race of the year was held last night, the 29th April, and now we know who has progressed into the F1 Esports Pro Exhibition.
For the uninitiated, we recently published a guide, but briefly, it’s 48+ budding F1 esports drivers, duking it out for the chance to reach the Pro Exhibition. Once there, an F1 Pro Esports team could select them to be part of their official digital racing squad for the season ahead.
This week saw the final round, which consisted of two races on each platform. One at the Circuit of the Americas and a second at Yas Marina Circuit. PS4 entrants races on the 27th, Xbox One on the 28th and the PC gang on the 29th April.
The top six on each platform qualifies for the Pro Exhibition, after a very closely contested competition, here’s who made it through:
PS4 – Valentin Brüffer, Thijmen Schütte, Domenico Lovece, Matthijs van Erven, Duncan Hofland, Dario Iemmulo
Xbox One – Kedon Lutt, Antoine de Zaluski, Christopher Parry, Jonas Rütten, Ewan Le Naour, Zak Oates
PC – Alessio Di Capua, Josh Idowu, Nicolás Mateo, Patrik Sipos, Ruben Vallejo, Atte Kauppinen
“This week, I would say the PS4 races were the most timid, although the cars were still really close, and the other two platforms had a bit more action,” explains Traxion’s very own Justin Sutton who co-commentates the races live.
“All saw more three-second penalties and late lunges than normal, maybe an end of term feeling. But I enjoyed that, the drivers were going for it. We had several three-wide moments, and at both tracks.”
With the Pro Exhibition on the 27th May, there’s time now for those lucky qualifiers to take stock of their achievement and focus on additional practice. Although, it’s worth noting, that at this stage we do not know what format the event will use.
There have been several stand-out drivers this season in Challengers, all delivering high-intensity races and quick lap times, but a few have jumped out in the final two races for Justin.
“On PS4, Valentin Brüffer was impressive. He went backwards at COTA, falling from pole to fourth, but then he had an incredible race at Yas Marina just a few minutes after that. To me that shows good mental strength, to immediately bounce back. It meant he won the PS4 category by one point, just ahead of Thijmen Schütte.
“Of the Xbox One racers, Antoine de Zaluski was the standout for me. He didn’t win the championship but won in Abu Dhabi by an impressive margin. We didn’t often see other drivers pull away from the field like that during this season.
“Finally, on PC, Josh Idowu was great but Patrik Sipos, who was 5th coming into this final event, grabbed two second place finishes, and a fastest lap bonus point, in the final two races, 37 points for the event was a great way to end the season.”
Now the dust has settled, Justin has been mightily impressed by the driving standards in 2021.
“Absolutely everyone is incredibly rapid. The top three from Xbox, top four on PS4 and the top two on PC are particularly amazing to my eyes and could be ones to look out for in the Pro Exhibition, and even the Pro Series. Although, again, all 18 are incredible. Even the drivers who didn’t make the cut were impressive.”
Now the season is wrapped up, we await further information about the rest of the year for F1 Esports, but rest assured, Traxion will keep you updated.