The FIA today hosted the inaugural meeting of its newly-created FIA Digital Motor Sport Working Group at the Federation’s headquarters in Geneva.
Announced earlier today as part of a package of innovations detailed by FIA President Jean Todt in a press conference at the Geneva International Motor Show, the FIA Digital Motor Sport Working Group convened for the first time under the chairmanship of FIA Deputy President for Sport, Graham Stoker and steered by FIA Sport and Marketing. The Group is comprised of 16 national sporting authorities (ASNs) from around the world, promoters of the FIA’s global motor sport world championships, leading Game development studios, representatives from the FIA Drivers’ Commission and the Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF), together with other members of the motor sport community.
The 2018 FIA Prize Giving in December marked a watershed in the Federation’s commitment to digital motor sport, with the crowning of the FIA Certified Gran Turismo World Championships, Nations Cup and Manufacturers Series winners Igor Fraga, Tyrell Meadows, Vincent Rigaud and Kanata Kawakami.
The meeting included a wide variety of topics, including setting out organisational guidelines, a consideration of the calendar of live events taking place in the coming year and the role of officials in digital competitions.
With racing esports growing rapidly in popularity, the group also discussed the increasing overlap between virtual and real racing environments and ways in which players can be encouraged to transfer their skills from the game to the race track.
As well as increasing numbers of players, the group also looked at the vast potential of digital motor sport to drive audience engagement, particularly among younger generations.
Finally, the FIA Digital Motor Sport Working Group looked at ways in which virtual racing can be used as an educational tool, with the development of gaming technologies bringing the required skills and techniques between the virtual and real worlds closer together.
Graham Stoker commented: “Digital motor sport is developing at an incredible pace and the creation of the FIA Digital Motor Sport Working Group underlines the Federation’s commitment to driving forward this exciting and innovative discipline. This inaugural meeting has provided us with the opportunity to share the broad-spectrum experience within the Group, evaluate a range of case studies, and determine a strategic framework. Innovating in motor sport is about understanding what will resonate with Generation Z and beyond, and the possibilities for creating accessible and affordable competitor pathways through digital motor sport are extremely exciting.”
The Digital Motorsport Working Group will regroup at the end of August to share progress.