A new esports racing fair opens its gates in November. Here’s an exclusive insight into their plans.
Photo credit: Kunos Simulazioni
Last weekend, the Formula 1 Silverstone Grand Prix celebrated the return of the fans. It was the first F1 Grand Prix to be held in front of a sold-out circuit since the beginning of the pandemic.
Esports racing fans are hoping for the return of live events as well. In November 2021, a new fair called “SIMcon” is set to open its gates for esports racing beginners and professionals. OverTake got an exclusive insight into what fans can expect from the two-day-event.
A come-together for all racers
SIMcon will take place on 6 and 7 November at the Messe Offenbach exhibition hall in Germany. This makes SIMcon the second sim racing fair to take place in Germany, alongside the long-established ADAC Sim Racing Expo, which celebrates its return in September 2021. However, the creators of SIMcon say their event is not supposed to be a competitor. “We do not want to create a rival fair for SimRacing Expo, but rather establish another stage for the industry”, Daniela Heck, press spokesperson for SIMcon, told OverTake.
One reason why the fair sees itself as a complementary event is its focus on the entire community. “We want to offer both beginners and professional sim racers a ‘playground’ with our event. Beginners can find out about the basics, for example, and how to get started with sim racing. But we will also have exciting novelties ready to test on-site for professional sim racers”, Heck said.
A stacked support program in planning
So far, no games or exhibitors are confirmed for the fair. But soft- and hardware will not be the only thing to see in Offenbach. The fair program also includes a supporting program consisting of several presentation that will be held throughout the event. Daniela Heck explained that “topics such as the entry into sim racing and going from amateur to professional are just examples of the presentation program that we are currently working on”.
Another planned highlight of the fair is a competition in which people “from other locations in Germany” will also be able to take part, Heck confirmed. While we do not know more about the platform or format of the competition, it has been confirmed that the event will be streamed.
COVID-19 as a factor of concern
One big factor of concern of course is the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Currently, the federal state of Hessen, where Offenbach is located, only allows 250 people to come together for an indoor fair. However, people vaccinated against or recovered from COVID-19 do not count towards this number. Whether these restrictions are going to be lifted or more stringent remains a big question mark. Both vaccination rate and number of COVID-19 cases are currently rising in Germany, as the Delta variant has become dominant in the country.
The Offenbach fair says it is in ongoing exchange with health officials to make sure SIMcon can be held accordingly to all hygiene regulations.
A long-term commitment
Although there is still more than three months to go until the first appearance of SIMcon, the organisers are already planning for the future. “SIMcon is supposed to take place annually and grow and develop steadily thanks to our cooperation partners, exhibitors and community”, Daniela Heck said. “We are therefore very much looking forward to the exchange and the future. Events thrive on the people who visit them, and we want to make it possible for people to come together again”.
She further adds: “Sim racing in all its variants has long been established in Germany. We are convinced that this area of esports, among others, is going to continue to gain importance within the next years and we want to create a new platform with SIMcon”.
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