F1 Esports series gears up for second season... without Ferrari

ยฉ XPB 

The burgeoning Esports series is back for 2018 with every single F1 on the grid fielding its own online team, with the exception of Ferrari.

Formula 1 initiated its Esports craze in 2017, with Briton Brendon Leigh emerging as the series' first champion after a thrilling finale in Abu Dhabi in November.

The F1 Esports Series will see the world's top online racers battle it out on F1 2017, the official game of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship, in an effort to win a place in the first ever Pro Draft in July.

The Pro Draft is where the official Formula 1 teams involved in the F1 Esports Series will select their drivers for the second part of the season. Every team must select at least one of its drivers from the Pro Draft.

"The qualifying stage is made up of four rounds," explained Julian Tan, Head of Digital Growth & Esports at Formula 1.

"These are online and start with a specific challenge for drivers to attempt. You race against the computer online and then you log your time.

"This will be followed by a race for the fastest drivers from the challenge and that will determine nine drivers who will advance per round.

"There are nine because we have three platforms โ€“ Xbox, PS4 and PC, so three drivers from each platform.

"By the time the qualifying rounds are done we will have 36 drivers, 9 drivers per round and 4 qualifying rounds, who will go to the Pro Draft.

"We're then going to give an opportunity to the top three from last year to automatically advance to the Pro Draft, and finally we will have a minimum of one wild card to make up 40 drivers."

The official esports drivers will then represent their teams in the second half of the season as they race in the three live events held in London that will determine the 2018 F1 Esports Series Teams' and Drivers' World Champions with a prize fund of at least $200,000!

Gallery: The beautiful wives and girlfriends of F1 drivers

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter