F1 Esports 2020 Final: Title battle goes to the wire, tracks, standings, how to watch & more
Glory awaits a new champion in the last round of the Pro Series. But who will claim it?
The fourth and final F1 Esports event is on the horizon and both championships are finely poised.
With three races to go the pressure is really on at the top of the standings, while other drivers will need a good performance to prove they deserve a drive in 2021.
Latest news – Exclusive interview with Marcel Kiefer
RacingGames.GG had the opportunity to speak with Red Bull’s Marcel Kiefer ahead of the F1 Esports finale.
He gave us his thoughts on the upcoming tracks and the title battle with Jarno Opmeer, his teammate Frede Rasmussen, and more.
The Drivers’ title battle
With 78 points on offer over the last three races, the battle for the Drivers’ Championship has come down to three.
Jarno Opmeer has been the dominant force this year, claiming a remarkable 7 podiums in 9 races including 3 wins.
Sitting on 153 points, he has a healthy but beatable lead over Frederik Rasmussen and Marcel Kiefer.
Rasmussen, who finished third in 2018 and second in 2019, is on 134 points while his Red Bull teammate Kiefer is on 121.
So far the Red Bull team has been a well-oiled machine of team-first racing. With both drivers hunting their first championship though, that dynamic could break down and allow Opmeer to streak away with it.
Two horse race for Constructors’ Championship
With three drivers dominating things, the Constructors’ title is strictly between Red Bull and Alfa Romeo.
This time it is Red Bull with the edge. Their 255 points is 32 more than Alfa Romeo. Opmeer’s teammate Dani Bereznay has been frustratingly inconsistent this season, mostly thanks to struggles in qualifying. However, he is more than capable of taking points away from Red Bull on his day.
Behind the leading duo the battle for third is extremely heated. Renault, led by the impressive Nicolas Longuet, sit in third with 93 points while FDA Hublot are just 7 points back, and Mercedes are on 74.
With the $750,000 prize money coming down to Constructors standings, every team will be desperate to maximise their points haul over the next three races. But how hard will that be?
Overtaking is tricky in F1 Esports, and often requires a bit of DRS help or some extreme tyre differences.
It will be even harder at Suzuka. The flowing ribbon of tarmac is a driver’s paradise for hotlapping, but the iconic esses and magnificent Spoon Curve are not designed for wheel-to-wheel action.
The track is also pretty narrow for modern F1 cars. All of this will make qualifying crucial and the undercut very powerful.
The Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez will make its F1 Esports debut in Event 4. With a massive pit straight that will strain ERS and provide plenty of slipstreaming it is sure to be an eventful race.
There are three DRS zones, but the tyres can take a lot of punishment through the flowing middle sector if drivers aren’t careful, while the tight and twisty stadium section is just begging for a concertina crash on lap 1.
Drive off the final corner will be all-important, with alternate strategy runners on fresh soft tyres at the end of the race likely to be a bigger threat than normal.
Is that Glock!?
The final race of the season will be held at the amazing Interlagos circuit in Brazil. While another narrow and flowing circuit, Interlagos does promote wheel-to-wheel racing and offers a lot of overtaking chances.
With sweeping corners and a lot of grass waiting to reduce grip if you put a wheel wide it is primed for a real nail-biting finish.
So, who will walk away with the championships?
There’s no doubt that Opmeer has been the class of the field this year, but his struggles in Event 3 allowed the Red Bulls to narrow the gap a little. It also showed a little gap in the armour that the RBR drivers will look to exploit.
The wildcard here is that David Tonizza, Brendon Leigh, and the rest are far from guaranteed to keep their elbows in and just let the title challenges race.
With ever point vital to teams and drivers, they will have to earn clear track and fight for every position.
Our virtual money is on Opmeer and Red Bull to claim the titles, but anything could happen.
How to watch
The final event of F1 Esports runs across 16 & 17 December.
Suzuka & Mexico will be on the 16th, with Interlagos wrapping things up on the 17th.
You can watch the qualifying for these events on F1’s Twitch channel at 3.30pm on both 16 & 17 December.