Drivers deserve credit for Esports boom, says Norris

Lando Norris believes drivers deserve credit for working together to join and set up Esports events during the break until real-world racing resumes.

Drivers deserve credit for Esports boom, says Norris

With the COVID-19 pandemic putting a stop to all top-tier motorsport, a number of drivers have been turning to sim racing and Esports to keep sharp and stay entertained.

Norris has been involved in sim racing for a number of years, and has recently been taking part in both F1’s Virtual GP events and the Not the GP series co-produced by Veloce Esports and Motorsport Games.

Norris was joined in the most recent F1 event by Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc, Red Bull’s Alexander Albon, Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi and the Williams duo of George Russell and Nicholas Latifi.

Speaking about the recent rise of Esports events, Norris said he felt the drivers deserved some credit for coming together and arranging times to race together.

“We as drivers have done a good job as well, trying to set up these competitions and get together and try and set it all up, as well as all the competitions like F1 and Not the GP,” Norris said.

“The competitions have been set up well, but there’s a lot of driver WhatsApp groups and so on where everyone is talking and chatting and trying to set these things up.

“I think that’s helped, but at the same time, for pretty much everyone, there’s not a lot you can do apart from commentate on these things and share these things around. There’s no other stories you can really come up with and talk about.

“I think everyone is kind of forced into looking at Esports, because that’s the only thing that can really go on right now.

“But at the same time, I think it’s grown massively, only in these last weeks, and I think it’s only going to continue to grow.”

Read Also:

Besides the competitive events, Norris has been joined by a number of his F1 colleagues in fun online races with each stream, interacting with fans in the process.

For Williams driver Latifi, Esports has been a new venture, but one he is enjoying the early days of in the build-up to his eventual F1 debut.

“All this Esports stuff is quite new to me, experiencing it for the first time,” Latifi said.

“I’m quite fortune to have a home sim setup like this. During this off-period here, it’s really just about keeping sharp, fitting in a lot of physical training. I’m fortunate that I do have a little home gym, so I don’t have to leave the house for that and I can keep self-isolating.

“But then I have a little home sim setup and I’m getting into sim racing for the first time. It’s definitely really cool, the first races I did the other week, I really enjoyed them.

“They’re definitely much more fun than I thought, so I’m keen to keep participating in more of them.”

Veloce and Motorsport Games will continue to host ‘Not the GP’ races on weekends F1 grands prix were originally scheduled, with the next event set to take place on April 19.

shares
comments
MotoGP 20 review: Early release gamble pays off

Previous article

MotoGP 20 review: Early release gamble pays off

Next article

Motorsport Games to manage ABB Formula E Race at Home Challenge

Motorsport Games to manage ABB Formula E Race at Home Challenge
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1 , Esports
Drivers Lando Norris
Teams McLaren
Author Luke Smith
How an unlikely tie-up won sim racing's biggest prize Prime

How an unlikely tie-up won sim racing's biggest prize

An unlikely partnership between World Endurance Championship LMP1 privateers Rebellion Racing and Williams Formula 1's highly-successful sim racing team yielded victory in the inaugural 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual. Here's how it triumphed in the biggest sim race ever staged

Esports
Jun 15, 2020
How seriously should Esports be taken? Prime

How seriously should Esports be taken?

As interest in Esports has increased during the coronavirus lockdown, the lines have become blurred between what's real and what's virtual - especially when some high-profile participants seem to be playing for laughs, says Luke Smith

Esports
Jun 10, 2020
Why Abt's deception left Audi with no choice Prime

Why Abt's deception left Audi with no choice

Daniel Abt's suspension by the Audi Formula E team - and possible loss of his drive - for fielding a ringer in an Esports event could be considered an overreaction. But in a wider context, his employers had little other alternative

Esports
May 26, 2020
How Leclerc is embracing his new mission Prime

How Leclerc is embracing his new mission

The emergence of Ferrari F1 driver Charles Leclerc as a Twitch streaming star has been one of the pleasant surprises of lockdown so far. He says it is giving fans a greater insight into his nature, but that's not his primary purpose

Formula 1
Apr 23, 2020
Leclerc's Virtual GP annihilation deserves great credit Prime

Leclerc's Virtual GP annihilation deserves great credit

The introduction of Charles Leclerc, Alex Albon, George Russell and Antonio Giovinazzi to Formula 1's Virtual GP last weekend meant it was a step above the franchise's debut two weeks ago. But a dominant performance from Esports newcomer Leclerc stole the show

Esports
Apr 6, 2020
How the hidden side of being fast has been exposed Prime

How the hidden side of being fast has been exposed

The lack of real track action so far this year hasn't stop drivers from keeping their racing brains 'fresh', as former F1 star Stoffel Vandoorne suggested last weekend.

Esports
Apr 2, 2020
Why entertainment isn't Esports greatest virtue right now Prime

Why entertainment isn't Esports greatest virtue right now

MotoGP's virtual #StayAtHomeGP was a sad reminder of some of the storylines that could be unfolding had the real-life season not been delayed indefinitely by the coronavirus pandemic. While we can bemoan Esports as being a poor relation of the real thing, it has an even more important function to perform

MotoGP
Mar 30, 2020
F1’s pantomime Virtual GP is fun but unsustainable Prime

F1’s pantomime Virtual GP is fun but unsustainable

F1 Esports' inaugural Virtual Grand Prix last weekend provided brilliant entertainment to those tuning in to watch a mix of F1 drivers and celebrities battle on track, but was a missed opportunity for marketing its own Esports stars. A change of approach is needed if it is to successfully fill the void until the resumption of proper racing

Esports
Mar 24, 2020