F1 cancelled, drivers will instead play on the PC and stream online

You can watch the Virtual Grand Prix online, with F1 drivers, esports stars and more compete!

| Mar 22, 2020 at 8:15 pm CDT

We all know the effects that coronavirus COVID-19 is having on virtually everything on Earth right now, with the F1 season being cancelled over the outbreak.

But never fear -- as the organizers of Formula 1 have announced the new F1 Esports Virtual Grand Prix series, which will see a "number of current F1 drivers" playing Codemasters official F1 2019 game. The drivers will play it on the PC, and have the games streamed across the world on the internet.

It all starts this weekend with the Virtual Bahrain Grand Prix on March 22, with the organizers explaining that every "subsequent race weekend will see the postponed real-world Formula 1 race replaced with a Virtual Grand Prix, with the initiative currently scheduled to run until May".

The F1 drivers will be racing either remotely, or from the Gfinity Esports Arena -- where the first virtual GP will be on the Sakhir track with a 50% length race at 28 laps. The broadcast will be made available on the official Formula 1 YouTube, Twitch, and Facebook channels -- with the race to last around 1 hour and 30 minutes.

As for the game settings, F1 drivers are not particularly gamers, so the gaming skill between them is very different. F1 organizers have said that the game settings will be "configured in such a way to encourage competitive and entertaining racing. This includes running equal car performance with fixed setups, reduced vehicle damage, and optional anti-lock brakes and traction control for those less familiar with the game".

The F1 organizers added: "The series is strictly for entertainment purposes, to bring racing action to fans in this unprecedented scenario the world has been affected by, with no official World Championship points up for grabs for the drivers".

Last updated: Apr 6, 2020 at 04:34 pm CDT

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Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering.

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