F1 Esports finalists heading to Abu Dhabi for showdown

The drivers who will take part in the first-ever Formula 1 Esports Grand Final have been determined after a highly entertaining head-to-head Semi-Final at the Gfinity Arena in London.

Forty of the best F1 2017 drivers in the world were reduced to 20 after eight heat races at Interlagos and Silverstone.

Following a day of wheel-to-wheel battling, some intense racing and impressive sim driving skills, the players who will make history at the Grand Final in Abu Dhabi next month came to the fore.

The qualifying sessions decided the seeding for the heat races and the quickest driver was Brendon Leigh who delivered on his promise, dominating both his races, including a maasterful drive in the rain at Silverstone where he was over a second a lap faster than any of his rivals, marking him out as the man to beat.

The race of the day came in the final heat, where Patrik Holzmann and Frederik Rasmussen staged an epic battle. Rasmussen made the better start and led the first part of the race, but Holzmann – second fastest in qualifying – made the move for the lead midway through.

This prompted Rasmussen to take his pit stop and with it the undercut for the lead. Holzmann quickly caught his rival, but it was only on the final lap that he was close enough to pull off a great move and ensure that, like Leigh and Dutchman Allert Vanderwal and Finn Sonuc Saltunc, he was a double winner and safely on the flight to Abu Dhabi.

Here is the full list of qualifiers for the Grand Final, which takes place over two days in the run up to November’s 2017 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix:

Contestant Points
Brendon Leigh 50
Allert Vanderwal 50
Sonuc Saltunc 50
Patrik Holzmann 50
Sven Zurner 36
Nicolo Fioroni 33
Cedric Thome 33
Cem Bolukbasi 33
Frederik Rasmussen 33
Igor Fraga 30
Joni Tormala 30
Tiziano Brioni 27
Patryk Krutyj 25
Gianfranco Giglioli 25
Alberto Foltran 22
Mads Soerensen 22
Harrison Jacks 21
Fabrizio Donoso Delagdo 18
Salih Saltunc 18
Maximilian Benecke 14