Rear View Mirror 8-15-16
Forza fans, it’s on. The first round of Season 1 of the Forza Racing Championship took place this weekend. Sixteen of the best racers in the world took to the tracks at Nürburgring GP, Catalunya, and Watkins Glen. That’s out of nearly ten thousand participants who participated in the ForzaRC Elite Series Cup.
In Sunday’s Showdown race, there was a qualifying session where drivers had a practice lap and a hot lap and after that, the grid was set As you might imagine, where each driver qualified weighed heavily on the race results, since these drivers don’t make a lot of mistakes and passing was difficult at best.
The ForzaRC Elite Series Week 1 showdown coverage was brought to us by Leigh “Deman” Smith, (@followdeman), and Rene “Grunner” Butler (@ESL_Grunner). These guys produced a broadcast that conveyed the thrills and spills of every moment. You can watch the full replay of Sunday’s Showdown here:
Each race delivered points to the top ten drivers as per the FIA spec. The point spread was from 25 points for a win to a single point for tenth place. If you were out of the top ten you had to hope to do better next round. The top four drivers qualified for the final where they will be competing for a 2017 Ford Focus RS. The hottest hatch to ever hit the road. So hot you can’ even buy one unless you are already on the buyer’s list.
There are other great weekly prizes, like Forza Horizon 3 Ultimate edition and Xbox One S consoles, but the real prize placing in that top four and locking in a spot in the Season 1 Grand Finals, taking place on September 4.
Just before the start of the weekend ForzaRC action, we saw a bombshell announcement by the eSPORTS + CARS race team, who announced their eight-man driver team for the first season of the Forza Racing Championship. The list includes well-known drivers like Raceboy77 and b0x, among other heavy hitters from around the world. You can check out the eSPORTS + CARS team announcement or watch their introduction video.
ForzaRC Week 1 Showdown Results
With little trouble, TX3 Laige stepped right up and won every race and every qualifier. If you’ve been paying attention to Forza’s recent esports competitions, this probably won’t be a surprise. After all, Laige has distinguished himself as arguably the best Forza driver in the world, winning nearly every major online racing competition he has entered since Forza Motorsport 3. He was a half second faster than his opponents in some races. While he didn’t walk away with the win unchallenged, The Shadest came close to challenging him briefly, Laige’s consistency took him to a clean sweep.
The first event was a nine-lap event at the Nürburgring GP. Laige pulled away straight off from pole position, while The Shadest, tried to challenge but bobbled the corner exit ever so slightly that cost him. Each driver experimented with different lines to gain an advantage, but with a field this strong there is just not much to gain. Raceboy77 had the slightest twitch in the gravel and it cost him a spot to b0x who was just waiting in Raceboy’s mirror to pounce.
Qualifying at Catalunya put Laige at the top once again, and by more than a half second. The other half of the front row was filled by The Shadest followed by BAM Asix13 in third. eSPORTS + CARS teammates Both b0x and Raceboy77 would have to fight their way from seventh and ninth respectively.
As Race 2 commenced, Laige would hold onto first despite challenges from The Shadest. Raceboy77 continued the battle from the first race with RoadRunner and did his best to find his way through the pack. Around the midpoint of the race Zermatt, also of eSPORTs + CARS, stuck his nose into BAM Asix13 at Turn One and did not give up, despite not really being able to pull off the pass. The ensuing bumping and bashing allowed b0x to slip past them both for the moment. This battle would continue, with Raceboy77 waiting in the wings to capitalize on any errors.
In the end the top two spots would go unchanged and Laige would add 25 more points to his kitty and The Shadest would take another 18 points for second, making them essentially untouchable. The final two Grand Final qualifying spots were up for grabs still with b0x, Raceboy77, and BAM Asix13 all in the running.You can watch the final lap from here.
The final race at Watkins Glen would decide who would be able to rest assured of a chance to race for the 2017 Ford Focus and who would be starting from scratch in the Round Two Rivals Qualifier.
Race 3 saw an aggressive start from the field. To move on to the Grand Finals, Raceboy77 would have to beat BAM Asix 13 by a significant margin and attain fourth or better, to earn that coveted fourth spot. By Lap 2 Raceboy77 had pulled ahead of Asix. The top three were pretty much set at this point, with b0x holding third behind leaders Laige and The Shadest.
With a well-executed and bold pass on LMR Harmonic, Raceboy77 had done his work to earn his spot. Asix13 contributed to the finality by falling back all the way out of the points. All the while fuel levels were beginning to come into play due to aggressive driving and unrelenting challenges from all racers. When the race ended Laige would be first, while Shadest and b0x battled to the finish.
With Laige taking first and a clean sweep, the remaining Grand Finals qualifiers from Week 1 are The Shadest, b0x, and Raceboy77. Among the rest of the field it’s anyone’s game.
ForzaRC Week 2
With Week 1 out of the way, Week 2 of the Forza Racing Championship Elite Series has begun! This week players are competing in the open-wheel 2013 Formula Ford Ecoboost 200 on Catalunya in the Elite Series, and on a variety of tracks in the Open Series. Remember: Registration is open now for both the Open and Elite Series so don’t forget to sign up!
This weekend will see the Week 2 Elite Series Cup over at ESL, followed by the Week 2 Showdown race, featuring the Top 16 qualifiers from the week. Who will win? You’ll have to tune into the official Forza Twitch channel beginning at 11 a.m. Pacific on Sunday, 8/21 to find out!