The first finals event of the 2021 FIA Gran Turismo Online Championship is upon us, as the World Series Round 1 will broadcast today.
This latest format for the FIAGTC sees players racing from home for championship points throughout the season. The first two stages of the World Series, WS1 today and WS2 next month, will consist of drivers and marques from the 2020 World Final. Each event will award three World Series points to the winner, two to the runner-up, and one for the final spot on the podium, both to individuals in the Nations Cup and to brands in the Manufacturer Series.
The WS1/WS2 drivers will then join with the best drivers from Stage One of the Online Championship for the mid-season World Series Showdown. This event, in August, will select the drivers for to further World Series events later in the year, and offer 10 World Series points to the winner and points for the top ten drivers and brands.
Today’s World Series Round 1 is a first chance to see the format in action, and there’s plenty of familiar faces racing. Defending world champion Takuma Miyazono is in the mix, and he’ll face stiff competition from 2020 runner-up and Olympic star man Valerio Gallo.
The Nations Cup will consist of a single race at Autodromo Nazionale di Monza, with the 14 competitors racing the Mazda RX-Vision GT3 Concept. Polyphony Digital hasn’t yet made the precise combination available — laps, tire compounds, fuel and tire multiplers — but we’d expect a longer race similar to previous “double-points” finals races.
All 12 Manufacturer Series brands from the 2020 World Final will return for WS1, though there is one new face in the mix. The driver line-ups depend on whether the competitors chose the brand again for this season’s racing, which means that Citroen — who finished 7th in 2020 — have no returning driver. Alexandre Le, the top-ranked eligible player after the first two rounds of the 2021 championship, will represent the marque instead.
Just as with the Nations Cup, the Manufacturer Series will be a single-race affair, with Suzuka hosting the event. Again, we don’t yet know the full regulations for the race, but we’d expect another finals-style race for the marques’ Gr.3 cars.
The stream will start at 1430 UTC, and you can catch it in full below:
See more articles on 2021 FIA GT Championship.