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2019 in Numbers

January 10, 2020

The numbers… what do they mean?

We’re here to break down all the best stats and figures from the spellbinding F1 New Balance Esports Pro Series 2019.

5,800,000 – Online Viewers

In fact, the 2019 series’ online viewership numbers alone (5.8 million) were greater than the 2018 series’ total online and TV viewership numbers combined, which amounted to 5.5 million.The 5.8 million number is also a huge increase over the same figures form 2018, up a massive 76%! The digital headlines don’t stop there. F1 Esports in 2019 also hit 169 million social media impressions – that’s up 66% from the preceding season.

$500,000 – Total Prize Fund

A cool half-million. That’s what was up for grabs for the ten teams competing in 2019. And of course it was Red Bull Racing Esports that grabbed the biggest slice of that pie, as they took the teams’ title in December.

109,000 – Unique Qualifying Attempts

Yep – more than a hundred thousand people loaded up the official F1 game by Codemasters, in an attempt to make the grade and qualify for the Pro Draft. During these attempts, we saw over 1.4 million laps put down.

That’s a massive 65% increase in participation – and 40% increase in laps compared to 2018!

SEVEN – Fastest Lap Scorers

A total of seven different drivers notched a fastest lap in the 2019 Pro Series. However, only one of these instances resulted in a driver scoring a point – with Frede Rasmussen taking a bonus point in Canada. Isaac Price, Amos Laurito, Joni Tormala and Jan Fehler all scooped one DHL Fastest Lap award. Tino Naukkarinen and Frede Rasmussen claimed two each. But head and shoulders above the rest Patrik Holzmann scooped the prize, with four in total.

“I would rather have one of the other trophies… but it’s better than nothing!”

Those were his words after being presented the trophy by W Series champion Jamie Chadwick at the Grand Final. The likeable German’s award may have been something of a booby prize, after a season he himself called disappointing. But mastery of the tyres in the Formula 1 game is a shrewd skill, and one he clearly possesses, setting the fastest lap in a third of the races. With one podium and 30 points, his 2019 season may have left him feeling slightly unfulfilled, but he’ll be aiming to improve on his performance for 2020, should he retain his seat.

TEN – New Points Scorers

A fresh roster of 30 drivers. Some new, some returning. That was the make-up at the start of the season, and so it was hard to tell who would end up where. As it turned out, ten of the new recruits managed to bag points in 2019!

The most obvious is of course eventual champion David Tonizza. The Italian was the first pick at the Pro Draft, and he ended up the class of the field come season’s end. Jarno Opmeer was also a new face for 2019, and his spirited campaign earned him P4 overall, with one win and several podiums. His team mate – fellow newbie Cedric Thome – also notched a win, on his way to 38 points.

Though they only participated in a handful of races, Lucas Blakely and Nicholas Longuet both picked up a podium in their 2019 championships, hinting that there could be – plenty to come from them in the future.

Daniele Haddad, Simon Weigang, Floris Wijers, Patyk Krutyj and Manuel Biancolilla all scored points too, making it 10 new scorers in 2019. Of these ten, six came from the Pro Draft.

THREE – Wins Apiece for Three Drivers

There’s absolutely no denying that the 2019 F1 Esports Pro Series was the most competitive yet. One of the biggest markers of this was the fact that three different drivers nabbed a trio of wins each. Champion David Tonizza, runner-up Frede Rasmussen, and fan favourite Dani Bereznay all notched three wins in the series. Better yet, they all drove for different teams!

That’s not where the three chatter ends, either. Three more drivers all took their first victories in the series. Cedric Thome, Jarno Opmeer, and Marcel Keifer all would have liked to challenge for the title, but they can all be extremely proud of racking up a victory each. Illuminati confirmed!

TWO – New Mascots

“This is my boy.”

David Tonizza and his trusty companion Baby Tonzilla were almost ever-present in the Pro Series. If you don’t know the story of how Tonzilla came to be, allow us to fill you in! What started as an accidental garbling of his surname by commentator Alex Jacques during the Pro Draft soon evolved into a fully-fledged identity for the Italian.

A simple slip of the tongue changed Tonizza into Tonzilla, and David – and his Ferrari Driver Academy peers – never looked back. After the Pro Draft, David’s head was crudely Photoshopped onto the body of Godzilla. Headlines (written by this very journalist) referred to him ‘roaring’ his way to victory. His three wins in the 2019 Pro Series were accompanied by team radio messages roughly consisting of “Aaaaah! Ton. Zil. La.”

Isaac Price couldn’t resist joining in the fun, and adopted a plush toy of the aptly-named Norman Price from children’s TV Show Fireman Sam. We’re not too sure if Isaac and Norman are cousins, but the resemblance is rather uncanny…

TEN – Most positions gained in a Race

“It didn’t go quite to plan… but had a lot of fun sending it and making it through the field!”

Brendon Leigh’s 2019 Pro Series was not quite up to the incredible benchmark he set in the previous two years. But it made for an exciting year – gone were the days of taking pole and controlling the race. Instead, we got to see the Mercedes man as a brawler. And as it happens, he’s a bit bloody good at it – Leigh made up 10 places in the Silverstone race.

He was in good company too. Joni Tormala managed the same feat in the race at Spa-Francorchamps, and Salih Saltunc repeated it in Austin. Yet more proof that the 2019 grid was the most competitive yet…

TWELVE – Rounds scored in for Ferrari and Renault

They may have both narrowly missed out on the teams’ championship, but Renault Sport Vitality Esports Team and FDA Hublot both attained a pretty impressive feat in 2019. All 12 races of the championship featured at least one red or yellow car in the top ten. It’s the kind of consistency that can normally win you a championship, so it’ll sting a little bit to have missed out.But when you consider that David Tonizza scored all of Ferrari’s points, and Renault rotated their trio in most races, it shows that Red Bull had the most complete line-up. They missed out on points at the season-opener in Bahrain after Frede Rasmussen got caught up in Dani Bereznay’s incident, but after that, they didn’t look back, scoring an average of 20.5 points per race from then on.

FOUR – Teams and Drivers in the Hunt

Going into round four of the championship – the Grand Final – we had no less than four drivers vying for the drivers’ championship. And their corresponding teams were all in with a shot at the teams’ title as well. Tonizza/Ferrari, Rasmussen/Red Bull, Bereznay/Alfa Romeo and Opmeer/Renault entered the GFinity Arena with a chance at scooping the ultimate prize.

With a healthy points buffer, Red Bull Racing Esports managed to claim their crown in the penultimate race of the season at the Circuit of the Americas. But it wasn’t until the final race that we got to crown our drivers’ champion. Rasmussen put up one heck of a fight, but Tonizza ended the season in style, finishing on the podium.

There’s only one number that matters now – 2020. Keep your eyes on F1 Esports site and social media for info on when the 2020 Pro Draft and Pro Series get under way…




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