Get to know one of the freshest faces in the 2021 F1 Esports Pro Championship with our latest Meet the Rookie interview!
Photo credit: Alfa Romeo
Not long before the start of the F1 Esports Pro Championship season on 13 October, we conducted an interview with Alfa Romeo Racing Orlen Esports’s rookie Dutchman Thijmen Schütte to get to know him better. Thijmen has made his way to the top of the F1 game league racing scene on the PS4 side of things along with his fellow rookie and good friend Matthijs van Erven. In the 2021 F1 Esports PS4 Challenger Seires, Thijmen finished second overall, just one point shy of Valentin Brüffer who won the whole thing. His three wins in the series came at Hanoi, Silverstone and COTA, three circuits which are part of the F1 2021 Pro Championship calendar.
On the back of his impressive season, Thijmen was rated highly in the Pro Exhibition and subsequently picked up by Alfa Romeo to drive alongside veteran Simon Weigang and second-year talent Filip Presnajder. In doing so, Thijmen is filling the rather large shoes of his fellow countryman, Jarno Opmeer, who departed the team in favour of Mercedes AMG Petronas Esports Team in the off-season.
ANNOUNCEMENT— Thijmen Schütte (@ThijmenSchutte) May 28, 2021
Delighted to announce that I will be joining @SauberEsports @alfaromeoracing for the upcoming 2021 F1 Esports season. Really looking forward working with all the great people in this team. Let’s make it a great season💪🏼🔥 @CRGSimon @FilipPresnajder pic.twitter.com/aNTNITcR3K
What will Thijmen be able to show this year? We spoke to the young Dutchman about his fellow drivers, F1 2021, and about Thijmen himself. Please note that this interview was conducted before the start of the Pro Championship season.
OverTake: Where are you from?
I’m from the Netherlands.
OverTake: Who are you most looking forward to racing with in the Pro Championship?
I’m most looking forward to racing with Matthijs (van Erven), because I’ve been driving with him for a long time now and he’s a really good friend of mine.
OverTake: If you had to pick one driver, other than yourself or your teammates, to win the Pro Championship this year, who would you want to win?
I would choose between Matthijs or Jarno (Opmeer). They’re both really cool guys and we need to have the Dutchies in front!
OverTake: Are there any Pro Championship drivers that you think people will be surprised by? If so, who?
I don’t know, to be honest, because we’ve all been driving in PSGL and people have been watching all of our league races so they know the pace. I think, for example, Simon Weigang. He hasn’t got the results in PSGL of course but I know that he’s got the pace. Of course Lucas Blakeley will be up front this esports season, and he wasn’t there last year. In PSGL he was at the front. I don’t think there will be many surprises but I think that Jarno, Lucas Blakeley and Nicolas Longuet are the ones who are going to lead.
P12 -> P3 in @PremierSimGL 🥉— Thijmen Schütte (@ThijmenSchutte) September 23, 2021
Really happy with how the race went. Qualifying went horrible but luckily the alt strat was OP. Really happy with the end result!🤘🏼 pic.twitter.com/bMGZvlV4QP
OverTake: If you could change one thing about F1 2021, what would it be?
I would really like to see laser-scanned tracks, because even though they made Portimão pretty good, I still think that if you get laser scans you get a way better feel of the track and it’s way more realistic. That’s the aim of course. At the end of the day we want to drive the most realistic cars possible.
OverTake: Who was/is your favourite real world F1 driver and why?
Max Verstappen. In my opinion, he is the best driver at the moment, although lots of people have different opinions. It also helps that he is Dutch of course, but I just like how he is driving and how he is outside the car.
OverTake: What is your favourite track in F1 2021?
Zandvoort. Every track where I’m fast I just like it. Last game it was Suzuka, but I haven’t really driven on Suzuka yet so maybe that’s a contender as well.
OverTake: Who is your biggest fan or your biggest supporter?
My grandfather is my biggest supporter. He has been supporting me since day one, since I started league racing and competitively driving. He even watches all the races back to analyse what went wrong or what went well! It’s always nice when after the race he calls me and asks me ‘how did it go?’
Unlucky I guess. I was on for a really good recovery drive until my front wing broke on an other car. Really unlucky so hopefully we can get some more luck and a better result next time. https://t.co/0LBnvugUav— Thijmen Schütte (@ThijmenSchutte) October 13, 2021
OverTake: Other racing games or other games in general that you play?
I also play iRacing and GTA V with friends. Sometimes Rocket League as well.
OverTake: Do you have any interesting hobbies outside of gaming?
I also do go-karting, I share a go-kart with my dad. We basically have a whole group of karting members who go karting together. It’s really fun! I don’t do professional races because nowadays it’s just way too expensive to do those.
OverTake: A fun fact about yourself that people might not know about you?
I really don’t know. I was thinking about it and I actually have no clue!
OverTake: If you could visit one place in the world, where would you go?
It would probably be somewhere like Los Angeles. I found Monaco quite cool as well, I’ve been there once, for the Grand Prix. Monaco 2019, I was at Rascasse. That was the weekend when Niki Lauda died and Mercedes was running their red halos. Max was right behind Lewis the whole race and he couldn’t pass.
OverTake: Any parting messages for our readers?
Just make sure to follow me on every social media! (Laughs)
Which other F1 Esports drivers would you like to get to know better? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!