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FIA starts search for virtual WRC Rally Stars

The FIA has expanded its reach for virtual World Rally Championship drivers by launching a worldwide program for prospective esports drivers.

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Nacon, KT Racing and the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) have unveiled the first worldwide programme to discover future rally drivers, called FIA Rally Stars. It will be available this December through additional downloadable content (DLC) for WRC 9, the video game of the FIA World Rally Championship.  

The eSports WRC Championship already provides talented players with a chance to compete throughout the year in a virtual competition that mirrors the World Rally Championship. WRC 9 is taking the next step to become the exclusive platform for the programme that aims to discover the drivers of tomorrow.   

This initiative is aimed at career starters between 17 and 26 years old, which reveals the FIA’s plans to keep these esports players in this space for decades. This multi-phase selection process gives the most promising drivers the opportunity to take part in a training and coaching programme supervised by the FIA. Seven finalists, including one female driver, could start their international career before aiming to join the FIA Junior WRC.   

The first FIA Rally Star qualification phase starts in 2021 in WRC 9. The programme is available to anyone who owns the game on consoles or PC as part of the FIA Rally Star DLC, available in December.  

As the latest version of the WRC’s popular video game, WRC 9 is the best game for young drivers to reveal their skills. Giving access to more than 800km of special stage from all 13 schedules rounds of the 2020 season, WRC 9 is the most realistic rally simulation yet.  

“Being innovative and global, FIA Rally Star’s ambition is to develop new solutions allowing young drivers from all over the world to reveal their potential,” says Yves Matton, rally director at FIA. “As soon as we introduced the project to NACON and KT Racing teams, they showed great enthusiasm and we couldn’t have hoped for better platform than WRC 9 to select the most promising candidates. The FIA World Rally Championship brings together fans from every continent. Many of them dream to get behind the wheel and our wish is to make our sport more accessible. Through FIA Rally Star and its digital version in WRC 9, living this passion is simpler than ever.”  
 

WRC 9 will be available on 8 September 2020 on PS4, Xbox One, and a later date for Xbox Series X, PS5 and Nintendo Switch.  

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