Alfa Romeo Racing have announced their squad for the 2019 F1 New Balance Esports Pro Series, including 2018 runner-up Daniel Bereznay and YouTube star Aarava as their team manager.
Last year in the F1 Esports Series saw the introduction of a teams’ championship, opening the door to the official Formula 1 teams to join the series. Nine of the ten teams signed on in Season 2, with Scuderia Ferrari eventually joining the series in 2019.
Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Esports take over from Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Esports for the 2019 campaign, continuing on their collaboration with Veloce Esports for a second year.
Having a partnership with Veloce, 2018 runner-up and former Mercedes AMG Petronas Esports driver Daniel Bereznay was released by the team ahead of the 2019 Draft. He challenged former team-mate Brendon Leigh for the title, only to lose with a race to spare. He was eligible to take part in the 2019 Pro Draft, but declined the offer having signed with Alfa Romeo as a free agent.
Bereznay will be joined alongside Salih Saltunc, who was picked in the first round of the 2018 Pro Draft by Alfa Romeo Sauber. Salih is the only driver who raced for the team in 2018 and has kept his seat, with Allert Van Der Wal and Salih’s brother Sonuc Saltunc being released.
eRoc champion and Le Mans Esports winner James Baldwin becomes the team’s third driver in the series, joining a star-studded line-up for the 2019 Season. Behind the scenes, Jamie MacLaurin remains as the team principal for Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Esports, but is joined by YouTube superstar Aarav Amin, commonly known as ‘Aarava’ as the team manager.
Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Esports will have to select one driver from the Pro Draft to complete their line-up for the 2019 Season.
Bereznay is looking forward to a new challenge with a new team and hopes to help secure the team’s first Esports championship in 2019.
“I’m looking forward to starting this season with a new team, and Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Esports Team is an awesome brand to be representing,” said Bereznay.
“I am ready to build on my performances from last year and help us secure the team’s first F1 Esports Championship.”
Baldwin will join the F1 Esports scene for the first time, having become a popular Esports figure at the beginning of 2019 with his eRoc victory against Leigh and becoming one of three drivers to help Veloce with the Le Mans Esports Series.
“This is my first year in the F1 Esports Series and I believe that my ability to adapt to new games will stand me in good stead heading into this new season. We have a strong lineup and I cannot wait to get started.” commented Baldwin.
Saltunc, who remains Alfa Romeo’s only driver from 2018, says the improved roster should help the team be competitive in the race for the team’s title.
“We had a strong season last year but we are more determined than ever to bring the Championship home to Switzerland. We have put our strong experience on and off track to good use, and we are ready to bring another level to come out on top.” said Saltunc.
Amin is known for his successful YouTube channel based on Formula 1 games and racing titles, joins the team as their manager. ‘Aarava’ will add a creative influence on the team, being known for creative YouTube series such as MyDriver.
With the addition of communication to the drivers in the series, team managers and experts in Esports will become a key figure to have within the series. Renault Sport Team Vitality assigned former Esports driver James Doherty as their team manager for the 2019 Season.
“I’m ready to take on the fresh challenge my new role at Alfa Romeo Racing F1 Esports Team brings, and I think we have a competitive line-up for the season,” said Amin.
“With my experience in esports, I’m hoping to be a great asset to the drivers throughout the season.”