With 693 of 923 racing kilometres complete, this Wednesday (December 4) sees the Grand Final of the 2019 F1™ Esport Series – and with three crucial races still to come and 78 driver points still up for grabs, Renault Sport Team Vitality is still in the running for both the drivers’ and constructors’ championships.
The fourth round of the championship, held at London’s Gfinity Esports Arena, will take in the three final races in Suzuka, Austin and São Paulo – and with Suzuka and São Paulo being featured for the first time in Pro Series history, an added element of the unknown is sure to turn these final Grands Prix into real thrillers.
That could play into Renault Sport Team Vitality’s hands with the team sitting third in the constructors’ table on 145 points behind table topping Red Bull on 181 and Ferrari Driver Academy just a point ahead of Renault Sport Team Vitality. Driver standings are also finally balanced with Jarno Opmeer also in third place on 103 points and narrowly trailing Frede Rasmussen of Red Bull (120 points) and title favourite David Tonizza of Ferrari on 146 points.
Opmeer, who recorded a maiden win in Germany last time out, knows he needs to drive to the maximum of his potential and hope for slip ups from his rivals to claim the drivers’ championship but remains optimistic. “We seem to have good pace on all three tracks so I think we will have a good chance,” he said.
For the last three races, he will take to the track alongside Simon Weigang who joined the team following this year’s draft and has bagged the second driver slot. He said: “My target for this event is to help the team win the championship with good and consistent results. If I deliver what I can do in practice, I can win races and I’m preparing on a daily basis to make it happen.”
Weigang getting on the grid inevitably means Cedric Thomé will be missing out after a strong start to the season. “I will have my fingers crossed for Jarno and Simon to bring the trophy home,” he said. “I’ll try and do my best to help and support them.”
With the pressure almost insurmountable for the last three races, finding the right mental attitude is crucial to the team’s success. Team manager James Doherty is well aware of the challenge given his time as a former driver. “Going to this last event the team have a very calm mindset, as we have everything to gain and not much to lose. The title is still within reach if luck is on our side, as we’ve already proved what we are capable of,” he said. “Our mission to drive to our potential, and if we do, I believe we can claim the ultimate prize.”