Scuderia Ferrari are ‘seriously’ considering entering Esports and the F1 Esports Series, but team principal Mattia Binotto admits the Italian giants are yet to make a decision.
The F1 Esports Series launched its debut season in 2017 and was highly successful, with further extensions took place in 2018 with the introduction of teams in the championship.
Nine of the official Formula 1 constructors joined the programme last year, with some teams collaborating with current Esports teams such as Team Vitalty and Veloce Esports. Mercedes AMG Petronas Esports claimed the inaugural teams’ championship last year in dominant fashion, whilst Brendon Leigh captured his second drivers’ title after winning the first season in 2017.
Ferrari were the only F1 team who decided not to enter the series last year. The Italian team wanted to explore and watch how the series progresses from the sidelines.
The Italian manufacturer is known for its isolation with projects such as the Netflix Documentary: “Drive To Survive”, where both Ferrari and Mercedes had very limited involvement in the first season of the programme over the 2018 Formula 1 Season.
Both teams are yet to make a decision whether they will take part in season two of the documentary series, and Ferrari are still undecided whether they will set up their own F1 Esports team.
But speaking to Autosport.com at the Spanish Grand Prix, Mattia Binotto spoke how Esports is becoming an interest within the Ferrari camp, however they admit they’re not yet fully committed to the idea and will make a decision whether to form their own team very soon.
“Esports is increasing in terms of interest and certainly as Ferrari we are looking seriously into it,” said Binotto.
“We are not yet fully committed to the programme but it’s something where the discussions are ongoing.
“We will, very soon, make our own decision.”
The 2019 F1 New Balance Esports Series has started with the qualification events on the F1 2018 game coming to an end, the starting route for newcomers to the series to attempt an entry within the series.
The first stages of elimination will take place on the race-offs taking place between 27th and 29th May. The 17th July will see the Pro Draft take place, where the teams will have to make their selections out of the pool of drivers left after a series of tests. Each team must make at least one pick in the draft to partner their already assigned roster.
The series will then commence in September and will run until December, with four live shows taking place at the GFinity Arena in London using the new F1 2019 Game, which will release on the 28th June.