W Series launches Esports League exclusively for female racing drivers
The W Series Esports League aims to replicate the success of the first season, but on a virtual platform
The eight-race 2020 W Series, the international single-seater motor racing championship for female drivers, was originally scheduled to begin with six races on the DTM platform, kicking off in St Petersburg, Russia, on May 29-30. However, DTM has now postponed that race until the autumn, owing to the global COVID-19 crisis. Now, with prospects of many more cancellations and postponements to bear, the W Series has introduced the first online e-racing championship for female racing drivers, christened the W Series Esports League.
The W Series Esports League will partner with Logitech G (a well-known brand in PC and console gaming gear), Beyond Entertainment (a community-driven organisation specialising in hosting online tournaments for games like Gears Of War and Rocket League, among others) and iRacing (the leading esports simulation platform, which also hosts the Indian Sim Racing League). Additionally, the W Series Esports League will feature digital versions of the Tatuus Formula Renault 2.0 race car, similar in performance to the W Series Tatuus Formula 3 race car, right down to the looks and performance.
As mentioned, the W Series Esports League will be contested by women only, and all 18 drivers qualified to race in the on-track W Series this year are expected to take part.
They include: Jamie Chadwick, Alice Powell, Sarah Moore, Jessica Hawkins and Abbie Eaton from the United Kingdom; Marta Garcia, Belen Garcia and Nerea Marti from Spain; Emma Kimilainen from Finland, Beitske Visser from the Netherlands, Fabienne Wohlwend from Liechtenstein, Miki Koyama from Japan, Vicky Piria from Italy, Tasmin Pepper from South Africa, Sabre Cook from the United States, Irina Sidorkova from Russia and Bruna Tomaselli from Brazil.
In addition, W Series may also include other female drivers to participate in W Series Esports League races on an invitational basis.
The W Series Esports League races will be run on virtual renditions of the following circuits in the world, in the following order: the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza (Italy), the Circuit of the Americas (United States), the Brands Hatch Grand Prix Circuit (United Kingdom), Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace, Interlagos (Brazil), Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium), Watkins Glen International (United States), the Suzuka International Racing Course (Japan), Mount Panorama Racing Circuit (Australia), the Nurburgring Nordschleife (Germany) and the Silverstone Circuit (United Kingdom).
Up to three races will be run at each of the 10 circuits, of varying lengths/durations, with W Series Esports League points will be awarded in every race. The majority of the races will start on grids formed according to normal qualifying sessions, but some of them reverse-grid races started on grids formed in reverse order of current W Series Esports League points standings.
At the end of the W Series Esports League season, the driver who has scored the most points will be declared the winner of the W Series Esports League Title.
Speaking about the W Series Esports League, David Coulthard (Chairman, W Series Advisory Board) said, “The 2019 W Series championship was a brilliantly successful and hugely popular six-race debut season, and I’m sure that the 2020 W Series championship, which has been scheduled over eight races, would have been even bigger and even better. We intend to stage on-track W Series races once the global COVID-19 crisis has subsided, whenever that will be, but, in the meantime, we’re delighted to have created the next best thing, the W Series Esports League, which will race on ten of the greatest racetracks in the world.
Jamie Chadwick, the 2020 W Series Champion, said, “Nothing beats the sheer thrill of driving a real race car flat-out on a real racetrack, and I don’t mind admitting I’m missing that enormously. But I’ve been massively impressed by the work that W Series, Logitech, Beyond Entertainment and iRacing have done together over the past few weeks, and the result, the W Series Esports League, is seriously impressive.”
Further information on the new W Series Esports League, including race dates and details are how and where to watch it, will be revealed soon.