One of our national motorsport governing bodies, MotorSport New Zealand, has announced that it will join the world of e-sports with the launch of its official Digital Motor Sport Championship in 2020. The announcement comes after the international governing body of the sport, the FIA, recognised e-sports back in 2018, and it has quickly become one of its fastest-growing disciplines worldwide.
The local championship will join the ranks of international competitions already in place, such as the FIA GT World Tour, which sees the best digital racers from around the globe compete in a sanctioned FIA series.
MotorSport New Zealand’s competitions manager, Elton Goonan, who sits on the FIA’s Digital Motor Sport Working Group, says he is excited to see the initiative start in New Zealand.
“We want to make motorsport as accessible as possible in New Zealand and that will be the driving force behind formulating our Digital Motor Sport Championship,” he said. “It’s an incredibly cost-effective way to get into the sport — a TV, an Internet connection, and a machine to race on is all you need.”
With the example of dual-talent driver Igor Fraga, both an FIA Gran Turismo Nations Cup (e-sports) and Brazilian Formula 3 champion, who has just won both the New Zealand Grand Prix and the Toyota Racing Series, it seems e-sports is a viable career path that opens doors to racing ‘real’ cars, too.
Exact details of the NZ championship are yet to be announced. Prospective drivers can register their interest and receive the latest updates at motorsport.org.nz/digitalmotorsport.