With the F1 Esports Pro Championship fast approaching, McLaren Shadow have announced a mighty three-driver roster who will compete for them in the upcoming esports competition.
Image credit: McLaren Shadow
In the F1 Esports scene, McLaren Shadow have enjoyed moderate success with their driver lineups. The likes of Bono Huis, Enzo Bonito, James Baldwin and 2020 Pro Series top rookie Dani Moreno have all donned the orange and blue. For 2021 though, the team have announced a mightily talented lineup consisting of Josh Idowu, Bardia Boroumand and Daniel Bereznay.
On The Rise
Since partnering with Veloce Esports heading into the 2020 season, it’s clear that McLaren’s approach to the esports scene has seen a big shift. Recent entries into the V10 R-League, eNASCAR, SRO GT Esports and the Trackmania Grand League all indicate a growing investment in esports racing.
F1 Esports was where it all began for McLaren Shadow, and their selection of drivers this year are surely going to net them some big points.
In their press release, McLaren Shadow esports manager Leeston Bryant had this to say:
“We are thrilled to announce the new McLaren Shadow line-up ahead of our fourth season competing in the F1 Esports Series. Josh is a hugely exciting prospect and is testament to our McLaren Shadow Academy, as it now cultivates talent that goes on to represent us in elite sim racing.
“Meanwhile, Dani and Bari bring a wealth of experience as we look to push forward and compete at the top in what is an exciting time for the team, and our wider esports and gaming programme.”
We are delighted to announce our driver line-up for the upcoming F1 Esports Series 🏎@JoshIdowu_@speedbari @FormulaDani— McLaren Shadow (@McLarenShadow) August 23, 2021
Read more ✨ https://t.co/RyFt68Bpr4 pic.twitter.com/HopK9gO9PJ
Welsh youngster Idowu was initially a part of the McLaren Shadow Academy team alongside fellow F1 Esports budding talent Tomek Poradzisz of Poland. You will have seen Idowu compete in the Virtual Grand Prix sprint races earlier this year alongside James Baldwin trying to get as good a starting position as possible for the likes of Benjamin ‘Tiametmarduk’ Daly, Jimmy Broadbent and Nic Hamilton.
Now he’s old enough to compete in the Pro Championship, and having proven himself across many league racing series’ as well as finishing only nine points away from winning the F1 Esports Challenger Series on PC, you can be sure that he will spring a surprise when he takes to the grid. With that being said, he does have two incredibly talented and renowned teammates to contend with if he’s to be selected to compete in the races.
#PSGLS29 | PC F1 – McLaren 🍊 @speedbari once again leads McLaren’s charge 🔥 @JoshIdowu_ goes in search of his maiden PSGL victory 🏆— PSGL (@PremierSimGL) August 8, 2021
The new season gets underway on Thursday from 7pm BST in 🇧🇭
🎙 @georgemorgantv & @JackCComs https://t.co/Jp08Yj77V8 pic.twitter.com/ulcgSgXWn0
Bari Boroumand is immensely highly rated, and has been one of the only drivers able to give reigning Pro Series champion Jarno Opmeer a run for his money. The Iranian was champion in the F1 Esports Challenger Series on PlayStation in 2019, and immediately burst onto the scene during the F1 Virtual Grand Prix Pro Exhibition races in early 2020, when in only his second appearance, he took pole position.
He was selected to race for Mercedes AMG Petronas Esports Team in the 2020 Pro Series however he was criminally underutilised, only racing in one round when regular driver Bono Huis couldn’t compete due to a hardware issue. Expect Boroumand to be McLaren’s best bet for a championship charge yet, and maybe even a constructor’s win is on the cards with their third driver.
Dani Bereznay has been a frontrunner in the Pro Series since he joined the grid in 2018. He was drafted by Mercedes to race alongside eventual dominant champion Brendon Leigh, and got two wins on his way to second overall. He then switched to the Veloce-controlled Alfa Romeo team for 2019. He ended that season with with three wins, placing third in the final standings behind eventual champion David Tonizza and runner-up Frede Rasmussen.
Esports F1 driver beat professional F1 drivers: He defeated Norris, Vandoorne and Nicholas Latifi, Lando Hulkenberg. But on a virtual track. Dani Bereznay from Hungary, nineteen, was officially a Formula 1 driver for Alfa Romeo,… https://t.co/PTZqfSxxdl #esports #gaming #gamer pic.twitter.com/dqgqZ4lWxk— esportsbusinessnetwork (@esportsbiznet) April 5, 2020
For 2020, Bereznay was paired at Alfa Romeo with the immensely highly-rated Jarno Opmeer and the pair were expected to earn Alfa Romeo the team’s championship. However whilst Opmeer stormed to the title, Bereznay failed to win a race and ended up fifth at the end of the season. The Hungarian will be determined to rediscover that form that earned him a place at the front of the field and finally go for the title that he’s always threatened to win.
There are currently no official dates as to when the Pro Championship will begin, but it’s expected to start in October. If you are a McLaren fan, you have every reason to believe they can win races and maybe even compete for the championship this year in F1 Esports!
Do you think McLaren Shadow will win the championship with these three drivers? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!