Supercars is the top-tier of motorsport in this country and after a successful trial last year, eSports is set to feature in a far bigger way in 2018. More than 200,000 people watched the live stream of the Forza-based Bathurst challenge and this year will have a total of 6 events on the calendar.
While a full race calendar would be amazing, without a full set of Australian tracks in the game, it’s a hard feat to pull off. The new eSport events are no scheduled until the second half of 2018. Hopefully, that time is being spent creating more DLC for Forza Motorsport 7 to add the new VF Commodore to the game, along with updated liveries and driver names.
With more details to come later in the year, Supercars CEO Sean Seamer told Speedcafe.com that he sees the platform as a key tool in developing young talent. To be honest, I think it’s far more likely to inspire gamers to think about becoming actual drivers and while being fast in the game won’t always translate to on-track performance, it’s certainly a great way to surface those rising stars that can demonstrate talent and commitment that otherwise may go unnoticed.
“There is a plan to expand on the back half of this year. We are looking at expanding to six events with the support of our partners.
Absolutely, it is a market we need to be in. If you look at racing simulators from an eSports point of view they are so well developed compared to other eSports platforms, so we are in a good place to capitalise.
It is such an interesting platform from a youth development point of view and an expansion of our platform and all the way through to the SRO (Global GT3 organisers), who are using it to test rules and regulations changes in a virtual environment.
The possibilities there are endless for the whole sport. Our prime focus is using that as a youth development pathway vehicle.”
Fans of gaming and of the sport have repeatedly called for a new dedicated Supercars game, but sadly we haven’t seen that. Often the track scans are the biggest investment and challenge, with multiple race events held on street circuits which are busy with racing, not free for a couple of days it’d take to laser-scan the tracks.
It’s a real shame, as this could take a fan and turn them into a superfan and a real eSports series would deliver the live telemetry from the cars on-track and let fans race in real time against their favourites. Let’s hope Supercars are watching other categories like F1 closely as they roll out their own eSports events.