He has beaten Lando Norris, Nico Hulkenberg, Stoffel Vandoorne and Nicholas Latifi. Then again it took situation on a virtual track.
Nineteen-year-old Dani Bereznay from Hungary is an loyal esports System 1 driver for Alfa Romeo, ranked on this planet’s top three esports F1 drivers and, for the length of lockdown, he’s beaten the total above in virtual tournaments.
On Sunday, he’ll lunge in an F1 Esports Pro Exhibition Whisk that follows a virtual loyal prix positioned on by System 1 and that comprises F1 and F2 drivers, alongside England cricketer Ben Stokes.
We spoke to Bereznay only within the near previous about life for the length of lockdown, his scurry from humble beginnings, his long luxuriate in for gaming and motorsport and how, in 2017, he managed to search out a profession that blended each and every.
After spending years practising in his bedroom with a wheel that tag 15 euros (£13), Bereznay within the slay realised his dream to work in System 1 in 2017, when he joined VeloceEsports and subsequently was an loyal driver for Alfa Romeo.
“Ever since I was seven years old and I started to leer System 1, I wanted to be linked to the sport come what may per chance. Esports is that pathway for me,” he told BBC Sport from Budapest..
He used to be ranked 2nd and 1/3 on this planet in F1 esports in 2018 and 2019 respectively, and desires to turn out to be no 1.
A valid character – standing at 6ft 6ins – alongside with his have YouTube channel, an eighth-situation possess within the Hungarian identical of The X Ingredient is amongst his achievements.
Motorsport has consistently been his first luxuriate in, but, with out the funds to compete historically, video games offered a mode for him to showcase his expertise.
“Esports used to be the handiest route for me, due to it’s equal opportunities,” he outlined, alongside side: “Real racing is pricey. With esports, that you just would be able to utter their own praises that you just mute possess the have watch over and heart of a precise racer.”
Sooner than being spotted by Veloce in 2017, Bereznay outlined that he used to be utilizing that 15-euro wheel to practice for eight years and may per chance handiest possess ample cash a low-tag video display.
Since becoming a skilled, he has been in a declare to scurry in a single other nation, which used to be no longer an possibility growing up, and has met heroes at assorted Big Prix events.
The competitors prize pool for the F1 esports World Championship is $500,000 (£407,500).
“I in actuality possess a contract, I’m extra healthy and my family has extra cash now. Issues are that that you just would be able to imagine for my family now that weren’t within the previous,” he outlined.
As a baby, his favourite driver used to be Sebastian Vettel.
Bereznay said: “He joined System 1 at the same time I started searching at. I consistently belief he gave the impression very humble – he even appeared somewhat luxuriate in me, with blond hair and blue eyes.”
Whereas he started searching at F1 due to it used to be broadcast on the same channel in Hungary that shows cartoons, it used to be his father who offered him to gaming.
“He bought me a rally game called Rally Trophy when I was young. That’s when we started to play against each and every other,” he said.
Then again, when a profession in esports gave the impression luxuriate in a pathway, his father used to be hesitant. As a baby in college, Bereznay mute harboured hopes of 1 unsuitable procedure into F1.
“I preferred mathematics and I believed it can be profitable to work as an engineer. I learned physics too, and wanted to be an aerodynamicist and develop vehicles,” he said.
Within the midst of the coronavirus pandemic inflicting postponements all the procedure through world sport, eports has managed to rumble on nearly as fashioned in some respects.
To be taught possess the void left by cancelled grands prix, VeloceEsports has been striking by itself virtual tournaments, that comprises valid-life F1 racers luxuriate in Norris, Hulkenberg, Vandoorne, Latifi and Esteban Gutierrez – apart from other athletes, alongside side footballer Thibaut Courtois.
It has stir two events up to now – “No longer the Australian GP” and “No longer the Bahrain GP”. Bereznay competed and beat the total above.
He outlined: “The toughest competitor from these guys used to be Lando Norris. He’s the youngest and does a glorious deal of simulator racing. He positively is conscious of what to terminate within the relief of the Veloce wheel.”
Within the absence of venerable racing, extra folk may per chance be searching at esports too. Jamie MacLaurin from Veloce says they’d 250,000 reside viewers for the races and possess had three million enlighten material views since.
Then again, Bereznay is enthusiastic for normality to come relief soon.
“We’re all motorsport followers and we need it relief. With these events we’re striking on, we are desperate to assemble away from folk correct making an allowance for that esports is an newbie component that anyone can terminate!” he added.
So, what are his ambitions?
“To take the System 1 esports World Championship. If that that you just would be able to imagine, multiple cases. If, at any time in some unspecified time in the future, a precise racing opportunity gifts itself, I would luxuriate in to strive myself out within the valid component with valid conditions,” he admitted.
Unfortunately, at over six feet, he feels he’s presumably too loyal for an F1 car and would possess wanted to commence coaching earlier in allege to come by to that stage, but he would luxuriate in to ascertain up on racing in a car – whether a touring car or in every other case – one day.
“I mediate I would be in a declare to handle a car on a precise track,” he said.