Follow a year where many series were forced into the world of SIM racing, BMW believes it has found the future. “We identified sim racing as an exciting field of activity for us early on and established it as a permanent pillar in our motorsport programme. The rapid development this past year confirms that we were right,” said Rudolf Dittrich, Head of BMW Motorsport SIM Racing. “Sim racing is becoming more and more professional and is establishing itself as a standalone racing discipline. It also offers a new, affordable way to get involved in racing and reaches new target groups. We’re using the freedom in this dynamic environment for intensive technology transfer and are creating many synergies between digital and real-world racing.”
BMW Motorsport added sim racing to its racing programme as a standalone, equal pillar in 2020 and, in close collaboration with the rapidly growing sim racing community, helped raise the industry to an even more professional level. Working closely with the simulation platforms iRacing and rFactor 2, BMW Motorsport integrated racing cars such as the BMW M8 GTE, the BMW M4 GT4 and the BMW M2 CS Racing into the simulations as realistically as possible. The best sim racers in the world went head to head in these digital versions of the cars during the course of the season, in the BMW one-brand BMW SIM 120 Cup and BMW SIM M2 CS Racing Cup.
BMW Motorsport SIM Racing will use the event framework to present its extensive programme for the upcoming season. This will be expanded significantly in many areas, to do justice to the momentum of the rapidly emerging digital racing sector. Plans include the one-make cup competitions, hardware developments and collaborations.
“In terms of digital activations, sim racing and Esports went through the roof last year – the figures were really unbelievable,” said Stefan Ponikva, Vice President Brand Experience BMW, in his opening speech. “This rapid development shows that we were absolutely right when we took the decision in 2019 to significantly expand our sim racing commitment. In the future, we will continue to work to achieve the perfect symbiosis between real and virtual racing. I can assure all the fans that sim racing is a fundamental part of our motorsport and Esports strategy – and it will remain so.”
Looking ahead to the coming season, BMW Motorsport SIM Racing presented a comprehensive programme. This includes an even larger range of BMW SIM Cups, close cooperations with four of the best sim racing teams in the world, establishing a BMW Motorsport SIM Racing Academy, and the announcement of the start of a BMW Motorsport SIM Racing World Tour.