Today French peripheral manufacturer Thrustmaster announced that they will be the official digital motorsport partner of the FIA Rally Star program, providing the organisation with its extensive ecosystem of sim racing hardware.
Back in August 2020, I reported that The FIA and WRC were partnering with WRC 9 publisher Nacon and developer KT Racing to help a selection of talented youngsters start their rally career by funding their drives in the WRC’s support categories. In December 2020, Nacon released the FIA Rally Star DLC which enabled the consoles and PC gamers to compete in a multi-phase selection process ahead of the first official WRC 9 FIA Rally Star qualification in 2021.
The Rally Star competition is open to all WRC 9 players between 17 and 26 years old and will give the most promising drivers the opportunity to take part in a training and coaching program based on the French Federation’s Rallye Jeunes program supervised by the FIA. Seven finalists, including one female driver, could ultimately start their international career before aiming to join the FIA Junior WRC.
Official Webpage – www.thrustmaster.com
Geneva, January 18, 2021 — The FIA Rally Star program, spearheaded by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), will begin seeking out the most promising rally talents in 2021. This international talent detection initiative aims to discover rallying’s “stars of tomorrow” and will be partnered by Thrustmaster. The partnership will see Thrustmaster involved in the search that will help young sim-racing talents turn their virtual dreams into reality.
A truly global concept:
The world’s rally stars of tomorrow will find it difficult to slip through the net woven by the FIA Rally Star programme, which is based on three core principles: detection, training and support. These values are also found at the heart of Thrustmaster’s ethos, having motivated the video game accessories company in racing since 1993 and ensuring that Thrustmaster would play a pivotal role and be directly involved with FIA Rally Star. With the growing convergence between the virtual and real worlds, the realism of sim-racing and the immersion provided by Thrustmaster’s products, it became very clear to Thrustmaster that it was essential to be part of a programme supported by the sport’s governing body. Thrustmaster is pursuing its goal of crafting a truly global racing experience that will be accessible to as many people as possible, allowing everyone to let their talent do the talking.
Thrustmaster fully committed:
As part of the partnership, Thrustmaster will provide the various national motorsport federations with a setup composed of products from Thrustmaster’s extensive racing ecosystem, specially designed for a totally immersive and realistic experience: a racing wheelbase, add-on wheel, pedal set, plus a progressive handbrake and sequential shifter, all of which are perfect for rally fans. Drivers, whether new or more experienced, will get the chance to use this specific setup built around the TS-XW Servo Base, with its incredibly responsive and precise servomotor providing powerful Force Feedback. The base will be accompanied by Thrustmaster’s T-LCM Pedals pedal set, its magnetic sensors ensuring perfect mirroring of movements made by the driver’s feet on the accelerator, brake and clutch pedals, and cutting-edge Load Cell force sensor adaptable braking technology. With their feet well looked after, drivers will be itching to get their hands on the amazing Rally Wheel Add-On Sparco® R383 Mod — an add-on wheel measuring 13 inches/33 cm in diameter, covered with super-comfortable black suede. Competitors will also enjoy the feel of the TSS HANDBRAKE Sparco Mod +, Thrustmaster’s progressive handbrake and sequential shifter for ultra-realistic racing, which will serve to unveil the talent of rallying’s stars of tomorrow.
The top candidates will progress through various selection stages during the first three years of the FIA Rally Star initiative. Thrustmaster fundamentally supports the development of rallying, which is an extremely demanding style of racing — whether in the real or virtual worlds. This program will also allow Thrustmaster to make enhancements to its equipment thanks to constant feedback from participating drivers, providing valuable new insights for Thrustmaster’s racing development teams.