2017 Finalists Secure Pro Draft Spots
June 29, 2018
The F1 Esports Qualifying Events saw over 66,000 people attempt to get through to the all-important Pro Draft phase, and after countless hours, laps – and no doubt hitting ‘restart session’ a few times – we’re down to the top 40 racers.
This elite pool of 40 will put their talents on display publicly at the first ever F1 Esports Combine at Silverstone during British Grand Prix week, where they will also take several physical and mental assessments. On Monday 9 July, at the Pro Draft, nine official F1 Esports teams will then get to pick the drivers to represent them in the latter stages of the 2018 F1 Esports Series.
That includes the 36 who qualified directly from the twelve qualifying races, two wildcard entries, and two returning nearly men from last year’s championship. But who are these returning finalists from 2017? Take a look at all of the Grand Finalists from 2017 who have made it through to the 2018 Pro Draft phase…
Fabrizio Donoso Delgado
The teenager from Chile came oh-so-close to taking victory in the inaugural season of F1 Esports,but will get a second bite of the cherry as the series moves into its Pro Series stage in 2018. His memorable last-lap scrap with Brendon Leigh on the final lap in Abu Dhabi was one of the highlights of the event.
“It’s really really nice to be here, I love it!” Those were the words of the smiling German as he picked up his trophy for third place in last year’s Abu Dhabi finale. Though he missed out on the top spot, he’ll have the opportunity to ascend the podium even further in 2018 thanks to his efforts in the 2017 series.
The elder of the two Saltunc brothers, Salih made it all the way to the final in Abu Dhabi last year after clinching his spot during the fourth and final heat of the serm-finals. After a tough start in the finale, a spirited effort saw him finish P10 in the Abu Dhabi decider, elevating him to twelfth overall in the standings. He wasted no time stating his intent in 2018, cruising to victory in the first Qualification race in China.
Saltunc Jr and his brother were almost inseparable on-track during last year’s proceedings, with the pair very evenly-matched despite Sonuc’s three-year age deficit. He was an unfortunate victim in the deciding race in Abu Dhabi last year, becoming the only DNF of the final and clocking in at 20th in the overall standings. However, much like his brother, he qualified on the very first attempt for the 2018 Pro Draft, finishing second in the China Qualification race on Xbox.
Veteran sim racer Patrik Holzmann had a shining Esports record in 2017. He memorably fought with Sven Zurner for the final podium position in the Abu Dhabi finale, but couldn’t quite find a way past. Finishing fourth in that race, as well as fourth overall, there’s no reason Holzmann can’t do even better as the Pro Series begins in 2018.
The PC racer lingered just outside the top ten in the first two races of last year’s finale in Abu Dhabi, but ascended the ranks to finish a fine P8 in the deciding race, netting a tenth-place finish for the Finnish habitant. He held his nerve to narrowly keep opposition at bay in the PC China Qualifier – and the rest is history. His place in the Pro Draft is booked, how far can he go?
Esports in 2017 was a story of what could have been for this highly-rated Turkish driver. After a poor start to the Grand Final – finishing just 19th in Canada, he bounced back with a thumping victory at the second race in Belgium, before coming home 11th in the Abu Dhabi finale, claiming fifth in the overall standings. Nevertheless, Bolukbasi is back and showed his might in the PS4 China Qualifying race with victory.
A podium in Belgium and a fine P7 finish in Abu Dhabi at last year’s grand final event helped secure the Dutchman seventh place overall in the inaugural F1 Esports Series. Victory in the Xbox Qualifier around Baku City Circuit ensures he has the opportunity to improve on his position this year as he reaches the Pro Draft.
Thome endured a tough fight in the 2017 Esports Grand Final, scooping up seven points in the Abu Dhabi race to wind up 17th overall in the standings. He will be hoping for better this year as he progressed to the Pro Draft, after finishing second in the Baku Xbox race.
This Great Dane started strongly in the Finals last year, taking a podium in Canada behind eventual victor Brendon Leigh and third place man Sven Zurner. He endured a tougher race in Belgium, but bounced back to grab sixth place in the race, and overall as well. His place in the Pro Draft was secured with P2 in the PC Qualifier around the Azerbaijan GP Circuit.
Gianfranco Fausto Giglioli
The speedy Italian had a breakout performance in Esports in 2017, and was one of just a select few to score points in every round of the Grand Final. A third-place finish in the Spanish qualifier on PC earned him a spot in this year’s Pro Draft, where he’ll be hoping to improve on his eighth place overall in last year’s standings.
Newcomers & 2017 Semi Finalists
1 PC 3rd Veloce FormulaDani, Daniel Bereznay, 18, Hungary
1 PS4 2nd G2 Sebi, Sebastian Job, 18, UK
1 PS4 3rd XxCarrexX06, Alvaro Carreton, 16, Spain
2 Xbox 3rd EVR Moorso, Nathan Moore , 22, UK
2 PC 3rd GrahamCarroll, Graham Carroll, 27, UK
2 PC 4th ACR J.Fehler, Jan Fehler, 22, Germany
2 PS4 1st NTG2011Freak, Dominik Hofmann, 20, Austria
2 PS4 2nd TRL_MAGICMSM, Michal Šmídl, 23, Czech Republic
2 PS4 3rd TGT_Sutil69FU_, Amos Laurito, 22, Italy
3 Xbox 1st Veloce Limitless, James Doherty, 25, UK
3 Xbox 3rd DRAWMASTER99, Kimmy Larsson, 23, Sweden
3 Xbox 4th Ycoms, Chris Holstein, 20, Switzerland
3 PC 1st LDLC S.Libeert, Samuel Libeert, 25, France
3 PC 2nd VP_Marek, Marek Schinz, 19, Germany
3 PC 3rd ACR Timp, Tino Naukkarinen, 17, Finland
3 PS4 1st floriswijers14, Floris Wijers, 18, Netherlands
3 PS4 5th FiT_Saro, Rosario Sinacori, 27,Italy
4 Xbox 1st G2 Isaac, Isaac Price, 24, UK
4 Xbox 2nd ragulih, Olli Pahkala, 28, Finland
4 Xbox 3rd Kyle Mitchell, Kyle Mitchell, 19, Canada
4 PC 1st ACR Stefii, Martin Stefanko, 19, Czech Republic
4 PC 2nd G2 Nestor, Nestor Garcia, 26, Spain
4 PC 3rd NonRunner, Aleksi Korsman, 21, Finland
4 PS4 1st CosmicGuille, Guillem Machacón Lobato, 17, Spanish
4 PS4 2nd XxProxX46, David Tonizza, 16, Italian
4 PS4 3rd EP1CxG4M3Rx1571, Lucas Blakeley, 16, British