This weekend saw the extended Le Mans Super Season hit Silverstone. To coincide with the six-hour race, the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) officially kicked off its inaugural Le Mans Esport Series.
The series, first announced in June, will utilize Forza Motorsport 7. It’s a joint venture between the ACO and the Motorsport Network, while French esport company Glory4Gamers will handle the running of the events.
“Esports is a key part of business now, and with my own team, we will try to be in this new championship,” said Fernando Alonso, on hand as part of the Toyota outfit. “With the Le Mans Series, we can hopefully have some fun there.”
Appropriately set at Silverstone, the first round is now live for players to take part in on the official LMES site. Interested parties will need to register there, and it should be worth it, with $160,000 in prizes available between now and the final, held at the 2019 Le Mans 24 Hours.
Glory4Gamers is taking a few different steps with this esport event versus others we’ve seen. Perhaps most surprisingly, every registered racer can choose which region they’re representing. If you want to stand for Oceania despite living in Iowa, you’re welcome to.
The six qualifying stages will roughly coincide with six of the races on the WEC calendar, starting with Silverstone:
- 6H of Silverstone: August 19, 2018 (Qualifying now open)
- 6H of Fuji: October 14, 2018
- 6H of Shanghai: November 18, 2018
- Autosport International: January 12–13, 2019
- 1000 Miles of Sebring: March 15, 2019
- 6H of Spa-Francorchamps: May 4, 2019
For each round, there will be a 13-day long qualifying period on the LMES site. All players will fall into one of the three regions (America, EMEA, Asia). The fastest players from the qualifiers will face off in 10-player online races in their region. From there, the absolute fastest trio (one from each region) will qualify for the super final. The catch? They’ll all be racing as a team. The fastest Silverstone people, the fastest Sebring… you get the idea.
This isn’t the only way to make it to La Sarthe, however. In recognition of the growth of dedicated esport teams, G4G will be sending an additional six trios to the final too. For four of the teams, they’ll get there based on points accumulated throughout the qualifier/race battery. The remaining two teams will be wildcard entries selected by G4G.
Round One Begins
For this first round, players will be tackling some of the fastest cars in Forza 7. The three cars all sit in the Early Prototype Racers class:
- 1999 BMW #15 BMW Motorsport V12 LMR P984
- 1999 BMW #16 BMW Motorsport V12 LMR P984
- 1998 Ferrari #12 Risi Competizione F333 SP P985
- 1998 Ferrari #30 MOMO Doran Racing F333 SP P985
- 1993 Peugeot #3 Peugeot Talbot Sport 905 EVO 1C P984
For the full details, make sure to register at the LMES site, and good luck!
Featured image courtesy of JPinto.