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Annunciata la F1 Esports Series 2020, Pro Draft il 27 Agosto


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E' stata appena annunciata da Codemasters la nuova F1 Esports Series 2020, il campionato virtuale ufficiale della Formula 1 che si disputa naturalmente con F1 2020. La F1 Esports Series, presentata da Aramco, torna quindi con una quarta stagione, con un premio in denaro di ben $ 750.000! Il "Pro Draft Reveal Show", nel quale i team ufficiali di F1 riveleranno il loro elenco selezionato di piloti di talento, si svolgerà il prossimo 27 Agosto. Come negli anni precedenti, ogni squadra deve anche aggiungere almeno un membro dai qualificati al proprio team di tre piloti, scelti da un gruppo di 45 qualificati.

Tutti i piloti qualificati Pro Draft sono disponibili per la selezione questa volta - non ci saranno gare a eliminazione diretta - e il draft online e le scelte di squadra si svolgeranno online in anticipo. Saranno presenti anche Tang Tianyu e Yuan Yifan, i due vincitori della stagione inaugurale di grande successo della F1 Esports Series China Championship.

Come per molti altri eventi, la F1 Esports Pro Series, che si svolgerà questo autunno, si è adatta alla pandemia di coronavirus in corso e sarà gestita a distanza nel 2020, con i concorrenti che correranno dalle proprie case o dalle factory dei teams, come nel caso di David Tonizza dalla Ferrari, campione dei piloti nel 2019.

La Pro Series si svolgerà tra ottobre e dicembre, seguendo lo stesso formato della scorsa stagione con un campionato di 12 round composto da quattro eventi online con tre gare, con alcune differenze. Quest'anno, le gare si svolgeranno su F1 2020, su una distanza del 35%, e ci sarà anche un nuovo formato di qualificazione completo per la stagione 2020, che sarà in linea con il campionato del mondo di F1 nella vita reale. Il punteggio seguirà ancora una volta le regole del Campionato del mondo reale, con DHL, partner logistico ufficiale di F1, che premierà un punto extra al pilota con il giro più veloce.

Prepariamoci quindi per otto trasmissioni in diretta, gare al mercoledì e giovedì per tutta la settimana dell'evento e anche sessioni di qualificazione in streaming live. Il tutto sempre sui canali social di F1 (Facebook, YouTube, Twitch e Huya), nonché su partner televisivi selezionati, con due spettacoli dal vivo per evento dalla Gfinity Arena.

 

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When does the 2020 F1 Esports Series Start?

The 2020 F1 Esports Series presented by Aramco, will be the fourth year of competition in Formula 1’s elite virtual racing series. It’s just around the corner, but when are the key dates for your sim racing diary? Let’s take it from the top…

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PRO DRAFT REVEAL SHOW

The Pro Draft Reveal show will be the first event in proceedings, taking place on Thursday August 27.

Here, the 10 official F1 Esports teams will select at least one driver from a pool of 45 up for selection. They will then add this driver to their roster of previously-signed drivers, making a three-person squad eligible for racing. Qualifiers for the Pro Draft include winners of 2019’s Challenger Series, Play-Offs, Time Trials, as well as released drivers from the 2019 Pro Series, and of course, our top two from the F1 Esports Series China Championship.

The show will reveal each team’s three-driver roster for the 2020 Pro Series for the very first time, with the hosting team previewing the season ahead and debating which teams have the best chance of success.

PRO SERIES

The Pro Series will take place over the autumn and winter, from October to December.

Each event is comprised of two days of racing, the first of which will see practice for the first race, followed by a full qualifying session and brand-new 35% distance race. This is then repeated for the second race of the event, with the qualifying and race sessions from the second race broadcast live. For the first time this season, qualifying shows will be introduced showing live elements and highlights from qualifying with dedicated streams both days on Twitch.

The third and final day once again sees qualifying and the race shown live in full.

EVENT 1 – OCTOBER 13-15

The first event of the 2020 F1 Esports Pro Series presented by Aramco will take us to three Asian locations. First up, the Bahrain International Circuit will play host to the curtain-raiser, and will be the only event held at night-time conditions in the series. This race in 2019 was dominated by Alfa Romeo Racing Esports’ Dani Bereznay, until a collision with Frede Rasmussen put him in a spin, enabling David Tonizza to waltz into the lead.

Then it’s off to Vietnam, as the teams and drivers tackle the super-difficult and brand spanking new Hanoi Street Circuit. This blend of speed, downforce and bravery will test the racers to a high degree, and curiously means that the track debuts digitally before it does in real life.

For the third and final race of the opening trio Shanghai International Circuit is the venue. Another combination of rapid straights and almost never-ending medium-speed corners, this one is a proper tyre-killer, so managing that will be crucial in the race. Tonzilla roared once again here in 2019, so he’ll be looking to add to his tally.

EVENT 2 – NOVEMBER 3-5

Event 2 opens up with a brand new event at the Dutch Grand Prix circuit of Zandvoort, which last hosted a Formula 1 race in 1985. Being a new circuit, there was of course no winner last year, although you can bet your bottom dollar that the drivers will have practiced around this circuit in their hundreds of hours in the run-up to the series beginning.

After that, it’s another classic Formula 1 venue, with Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Canada. This venue played host to one of the most controversial and exciting races of the 2019 Pro Series, with heavy rain and plenty of penalties. Red Bull Racing Esports driver Frederik Rasmussen originally took the win, but it was Renault Sport Vitality’s Cedric Thome was granted the victory on that occasion after several post-race penalties for multiple drivers completely changed the complexion of the results.

Finally, the third race of the trio will take us to the Red Bull Ring in Austria, which played host to two Grands Prix in the traditional F1 championship in 2020. The top two in the championship were nose-to-tail in this event last year, with Rasmussen hot on Tonizza’s gearbox for almost the entire race. Rather than risk an overtake with the possibility of both drivers spinning off, the Dane patiently waited for an opportunity. It never came, and so they crossed the line as evenly-matched rivals one and two.

EVENT 3 – NOVEMBER 17-19

The third event of the Pro Series is just a couple of weeks later, the shortest turnaround between two events we’ve seen before in the championship. Silverstone was another venue that got two races in 2020, and while we’re only heading there for one race, there is sure to be just as much action packed in. Racing Point’s Marcel Kiefer prevailed at this event last season, a win he admitted may have come too late for his title charge. However, with a new team for 2020, he could hope to carry over that form.

Race eight takes us to the digital Ardennes Forest and the fearsome Spa-Francorchamps. After two close calls earlier in the season, nothing and nobody was going to stop Dani Bereznay from taking the win in Belgium. Team Manager Jamie MacLaurin once dubbed Bereznay ‘The fastest driver in the world at Spa’, and he proved this beyond measure, with a well-timed battle with Frede Rasmussen unravelling on the final lap, as he bombed past on the Kemmel Straight.

Monza. Nothing quite compares to the temple of speed, and that’s where we will be racing as we wrap up the penultimate event of the series. In 2019, the qualifying shenanigans were just as prominent as those seen in the 2019 Grand Prix itself, with slipstreaming the order of the day. Bereznay made it back-to-back wins to earmark himself as a late championship challenger, although his win was arguably overshadowed by the emergence of Nicolas Longuet, who took P2 in his maiden F1 Esports appearance.

GRAND FINAL – DECEMBER 8-10

The Grand Final will take place as we head towards Christmas, and with three races left to run, it’s likely there will be plenty of presents on offer still. We go first to the unofficial driver’s circuit, Suzuka. This race culminated in yet another win for Rasmussen, as he began to eat into Tonizza’s championship lead late in the 2019 championship. It was also notable for the breakout race for Lucas Blakeley, who perfected his strategy to grab a stunning second place.

Mexico City plays host to the penultimate race in the 2020 Pro Series, and is a new event for this year. However, it was at this round of the championship last year that Red Bull Racing Esports scooped the teams’ title, with Rasmussen taking his third win of the season.

All good things come to an end, but we’re sending the 2020 season out with a bang. The much-loved Interlagos will be our swansong race in the championship. Last year it provided the ultimate finale, with Rasmussen and Tonizza just four points apart! A strong race for Tonizza left him leading, although the hard-charging Bereznay came along to take his third win of the season with just a few laps to go. Rasmussen in the end had a tough race and scored just a single point in P10, leaving Tonzilla to be crowned champion!

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