Rudy van Buren currently holds the bold title of World’s Fastest Gamer. The 25 year old sales manager from the Netherlands clinched this title in November after seeing off some formidable competition and winning the tournament run as a partnership between McLaren and IDEAS+CARS.
By winning The World’s Fastest Gamer, van Buren secured himself a 12 month contract at the Formula 1 giant, which held the finals of the tournament at their Woking based technology centre.
Rudy van Buren: Pretty happy would be an understatement! The whole G2 contract was for a fixed period that both parties agreed on and that has now expired. This was agreed to make sure that if I did well in the WFG comp I could commit a full 100% to McLaren.
ESI: After a fairly dire F1 season in terms of entertainment, do you think there’s far more spectator excitement to be found in F1 esports?
Rudy: Every racing scene has its super exciting races and a few which are more straightforward. That said, every bit of extra attention for the esport racing genre would be good!
The current esports scene is getting closer and closer to the real life world. Live streams, engineers, more realistic car model and physics. It’s getting to a level where more and more real life racers also start to show their hand in the gaming scene for practice. You can really see that both worlds are combining.
ESI: You were a karting champion growing up. Did you always play racing games from a young age too? And does competing match the thrill and adrenaline rush of its real life equivalent?
Rudy: Yes, pretty much everything has been about racing for as long as I can remember.
“A bigger audience starts to take it seriously and that’s what the racing scene deserves”
Not specifically on a PC or PlayStation, but also when racing a bike in the parking lot! Everything needed to go as fast as possible. After the go-karting period stopped I found a good replacement in sim racing. It’s not the same, but it comes close!
ESI: With companies like Millennial Esports via IDEAS+CARS investing in the sim racing space right now there is some belief in its potential. Will a racing game ever rival the viewership and engagement of the current top tier esports titles? What can be done in your opinion to make help improve current racing games in this regard?
Rudy: Keep doing what they are doing at the moment! More live events and events that feature the realistic racing games like RF2 / iRacing! Racing in esports is growing rapidly, and if there are more events like Vegas last year and WFG it gets more and more attention. A bigger audience starts to take it seriously and that’s what the racing scene deserves!
ESI: What have you got planned for 2018?
Rudy: Being a simulator test driver for McLaren! I can’t give away all the details yet but for the moment I am going to enjoy Christmas and the New Year and make sure I’m as fit as possible as soon as possible. I’m aiming to just to be ready for whatever next year will bring.