SailGP, the new global sailing league developed by software tycoon Larry Ellison and former sailor Sir Russell Coutts, has embraced gaming with the launch of eSailGP, a video game and esports competition based on the new sailing event.
The organisers have partnered with World Sailing, the global governing body for the sport, and Virtual Regatta, a developer of sailing video games, to create the new game. ESailGP will be integrated into Virtual Regatta Inshore, an online game that simulates some of the most famous regatta in the world.
A statement from World Sailing indicated Virtual Regatta is played by 1.6 million players worldwide. The eF50s raced in the virtual version of the series are a digital representation of the F50 catamarans raced in the real series. eSailGP races are 5-6 minutes in duration with up to 10 players per game. The game is free and available to play on computers, and iOS and Android devices.
ESailGP will become part of the eSailing World Championships, jointly organised by World Sailing and Virtual Regatta. The 8-month competition culminates in a live final and a $10,000 prize offered by Virtual Regatta. 1,000 of the best players in the world will compete in a playoff with the top eight qualifying for a live final that coincides with the World Sailing Annual Conference and Awards on October 29 in Bermuda.
“The eSailing World Championship continues to increase in popularity with new challenges and improved gameplay almost on a weekly basis,” said World Sailing chief executive Andy Hunt. “Established Olympic and internationally recognised classes have been the backbone of the gameplay but the introduction of eF50s will provide the hundreds of thousands of gamers with an exciting new discipline to play.”
SailGP is organising a series of three virtual challenges to launch the new game at this weekend’s SailGP race in Marseille. The 2019 eSailGP Live event will consist of a series of qualifiers and a live final in front of audiences in the fan zone.