At just 21-years-old, Frederik Rasmussen is saving up to buy his first condo.
Moments before our interview began, Frede went off camera to change into a different shirt. He returned with the iconic Red Bull logo perched on his shoulder and a cheeky smile. Without even saying a word, he was beaming with pride.
“It’s just been really nice to be with Red Bull because I think they do it right.”
Frede’s been part of Red Bull’s F1 Esports team since 2018 when he was invited to the factory and offered a contract that allowed him to focus on his career. He started sim racing five years prior and quickly made a name for himself online.
The best part about it?
“Not having to get a normal job,” Frede laughed.
He’s always liked cars. In fact, it was a YouTube video that drew Frede in. Guys were showing off their steering wheels and he thought they looked “super cool.” Eventually, he bought his own. And while Frede excels in the world of F1 esports, it wasn’t until 2014 that he began watching the real-life version, all thanks to fellow Dane, Kevin Magnussen.
“The thing I enjoy the most is the racing. Actually doing the races and competing against other people.”
Frede thrives in competition.
Adrenaline plays a huge role in racing. I mean, I’ve tackled a few races in Forza Horizon 4 and the rush you get from beating other players – especially real humans on the other side of a screen and not just a Drivatar – is almost unparalleled.
That same adrenaline fuels Frede in a way that is extremely exciting to watch. In fact, even when he talks about his past races, you can feel how much he loves being in the driver’s seat. Especially describing his most memorable race from back in 2017 when he participated in an iRacing GT3 race at Spa, which happens to be his favourite track.
“With two hours to go, I got in the car, about 30 seconds or something behind the leader,” he recalled. “And then on the last lap of a 6-hour race, I managed to overtake him. It was really awesome to do it.”
There’s something about the Danish driver that draws you in: his passion for Formula 1 jumps off the screen, so it’s not surprising that Frede was voted the Autosport Esports Driver of the Year. Sure, his accolades in racing speak for themselves. He was recently crowned the Formula E: Accelerate champion, earning him a whopping €20,000 and a few laps in a real Gen2 Formula E race car.
“It was an awesome experience to be able to drive one. Unfortunately, it was only five laps behind a safety car so I couldn’t really push or anything, or try to go fast,” Frede smirked.
Now, he may not be as vocally loud as other sim racers, but what Frede lacks in conversation he makes up for in character. Like a hilarious episode of The Office, the 21-year-old has a dry humour side to him that is incredibly entertaining.
I’ll be honest, we were laughing throughout most of our interview.
And while his team, Red Bull Racing Esports, slightly missed out on winning the F1 Esports Pro Series title for the third year straight this past season, Frede being voted as Autosport’s Esports Driver of the Year is incredibly fitting, given his quirky personality and humble attitude both on-and-off the grid, including his Twitter account, which boasts a very loyal fanbase. In a world filled with curated posts, Frede’s authentically himself and it’s unbelievably refreshing.
“It’s quite nice to get [the award]. It’s probably because I’m active on social media, even though I’m not active at all,” he chuckled.
Amidst the banter, Frede genuinely smiled whenever he talked about his life: his parent’s support, the racing itself, and even the “boring” way to spend his prize money. His words, not mine.
You know that old saying, do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life? Well, Frede personifies exactly what that statement truly means. And if he could somehow go back to his younger self to tell him anything, he’d simply say:
“Eventually you’ll be able to do this for a living if you just keep going.”
Buying an apartment in your early twenties… I’d say that’s a pretty, pretty good living.
Congrats to Frederik Rasmussen on winning the 2021 Autosport Esports Driver of the Year Award! We look forward to seeing your continued success this coming season.