Esports is now a booming global industry and continues to grow year on year. It is estimated that by 2024, there will be almost 286 million esports enthusiasts, as well as more than 292 million occasional watchers. There are a number of esports tournaments that millions of fans tune in for, including Dota 2, which is the biggest tournament in terms of size of prize pool.
One of the best known esports tournament games is the Counter Strike: Global Offensive game in the genre of online tactical shooters. MOBA game League of Legends is also known to attract large numbers of spectators and significant prize pools, while Dota 2 is most popular in the strategy category.
Not only do people enjoy participating in or spectating esports, plenty of people also bet on esports events with various online gambling providers now offering sports bets on esports tournaments. As with traditional sports, people can easily log on to online betting sites to place wagers on game outcomes and their favourite esports teams. Esports betting now accounts for a significant share of global betting and gambling revenues and is growing each year as demand continues to rise.
Formula One Esports Series
One such team is the Mercedes AMG Esports team who are huge competitors in the FIA Formula One Esports Series. Developed in 2017, in this series the qualification and final round stages are held on the official Formula 1 video game.
Over 60,000 gamers participated in the first series and British competitor Brendon Leigh was the champion for the first two years of the competition. He again joined Mercedes AMG Esports for the tournament in 2019 and came in fifth place.
The 2019 series had a substantial prize pool of $500,000 dollars. It is watched by more than five million people across selected television channels and online live streams, with people tuning in from more than 120 countries worldwide.
The Mercedes AMG Esports team were victorious once again in 2021 with winning driver Jarno Opmeer. Dutch Opmeer had also won in the previous year while playing as part of the Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen Esports team.
The Mercedes AMG Esports team
This German F1 Esports team has a HQ based in Brackley, United Kingdom at the same premises as the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team. The building is home to a purpose built Esports training suite with state-of-the-art equipment for players in training.
As there is integration with the Driver-in-Loop Simulator department, esports players are able to get engineer feedback on the model of the car, helping to optimise car set up. The manager of the team is Mark Weller, a former Chief Gaming Officer at Vexed Gaming.
Weller has a history of competing in esports tournaments and was a founding member of the UK Esports Teams Committee (UKETC). He was new to the manager role at Mercedes in 2022 and has been focused on developing his three-star players.
Who are the drivers?
One of the most experienced on the team is 28-year-old Dutch racer Bono Huis from Maastricht, the Netherlands. He has won the Formula Sim Racing Championship five times and in 2017 won the Visa Formula E Vegas eRace too.
Bono claims that the most difficult opponent he has ever faced online is Morgan Morand and his favourite racetrack in the world is Monaco. Outside of esports racing, Bono Huis’ idol is the world champion footballer Lionel Messi.
The player first competed for Mercedes AMG Esports in 2020, he was the winner of the the Sim Masters Champion title in The Race All Star Series 2.
Spanish esports star Dani Moreno is 22 years old and first entered into F1 esports for Mercedes in 2020. It was in this year that he was crowned Rookie of the Year for his impressive performance in that season, where he scored 70 points.
Moreno is a promising player and likely has a successful esports career ahead of him.
The third player in this team is 22-year-old Dutchman Jarno Opmeer, who is a former racing driver and now competes as an esports player. He competed in Formula Four and also won the Dutch Karting championship three times.
It was 2019 when Jarno joined the esports world professionally, during this time he was signed to Renault–Vitality Esports Team. The player, after helping his team secure a fourth-place position, then moved on to the Alfa Romeo Orlen Esports Team in 2020. His team came second in the championships that year.
In 2021, Opmeer announced his move to the Mercedes Formula One Esports team and in December won the 2021 Formula One Esports Series. He is a very versatile player and strives for success in every sport that he competes in.
The Mercedes Formula One Esports team are a strong group with a good history of success, we can expect them to continue this pattern into the 2023 season.