Ahead of the Game

SUZUKI ECSTAR ESPORTS - Riders' story

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Ahead of the Game

Have you ever wondered how real virtual reality can get? The MotoGP eSports Championship takes the gaming experience to the next level, and Team SUZUKI ECSTAR are at the top of their game with their representatives. Let’s delve into the complex world of being a eSports star…

Ahead of the Game

Have you ever wondered how real virtual reality can get? The MotoGP eSports Championship takes the gaming experience to the next level, and Team SUZUKI ECSTAR are at the top of their game with their representatives. Let’s delve into the complex world of being a eSports star…

Suzuki’s success at the top of the MotoGP eSports leaderboard is thanks to two outstanding Spanish brothers that belongs to Williams eSports division; Cristian Montenegro (World Standing: 1st) and Adrián Montenegro (6th). Their passion for video games came very early in their lives… “We started playing video games back in 2004, I think I was  around 6 to 8 years old, and my brother probably 6 or 7”, reveals Adrián, the older of the two brothers. “MotoGP is our favourite game and this is the only game we play, well… some times we like to have fun with FIFA. The best part of the MotoGP game is the racing, rather than just doing a fastest lap of the track by yourself”, Cristian adds.

The skilled brothers signed up for the World Championship two years in a row, and they qualified both times. “I realised when I was playing online that I was winning almost all the time, so when I got to know about the World Championship I just thought I’d give it a go, and here we are” explains Adrián.

The Suzuki machine was their first choice; “We got the opportunity to chose first, and without hesitation we picked the SUZUKI ECSTAR team! We love the bike’s amazing livery, and we appreciated the great treatment last year’s eRider got from Suzuki. We are very happy and thankful to Suzuki, because in Misano we got to meet the riders and chat to them, and they gave us the official team polo shirt… we couldn’t ask for more!”. This pride and passion the pair share for Suzuki was a major factor in choosing the digital counterpart of Hamamatsu’s GSX-RR.

You might be wondering what it takes to be at the top of your game in the World Championship? How do they train? And how many hours does it take them to learn bike handling skills such as sliding sideways into the corners? All this is much more than just pixels, it takes precision!

“We got the opportunity to chose first, and without hesitation we picked the SUZUKI ECSTAR team! We love the bike’s amazing livery"

The reality is that the game reaches such an intricate level that the eRiders even have to input settings into their Suzuki bikes depending on the track conditions, there’s even a Race Direction jury, and each manufacturer has its own characteristics!

“Well, people might think we are lying, but we only train around 1-2 hours a day. There’s even some days that we don’t play. A lot of people play between 5-6 hours. From our point of view its not worth it, in the end those extra hours aren’t useful because you aren’t focused 100%, so your performance starts decreasing and your lap times aren’t as good”, Adrián admits.

Their secret weapon for racing? Gear changes and corner speed are essential, clarifies Adrián. “We ride in manual mode, not automatic, so we have to make sure we change gear at the optimum moment so that the bike doesn’t cut on the straight, also trying to keep all the acceleration when exiting the corner and not going off the racing line”, Cristian adds.

Race Direction is formed by real people, who ensure fair play; “There’s usually a lot of touches and crashes, around 21 last season! But there are not many penalties. It was very weird the penalty I got in Misano’s event…” states Adrián.

We asked them if they liked playing with the other bikes on the grid, the answer was clear… and if you thought all bikes behaved the same, you are wrong! “There’s a big difference between riding a Suzuki racing bike or another bike. Each motorbike behaves exactly like its real prototype. Even if you set up the game for a balanced performance, each bike still responds like its real ‘twin’, with the same characteristics as the real thing” Cristian explains.

“Well, people might think we are lying, but we only train around 1-2 hours a day. There’s even some days that we don’t play"

Our riders’ goal is, of course, winning the title. They are more than brothers, they are opponents, and so they can’t wait to get to fight against each other in Aragon or Valencia. “I’m really looking forward to fighting hard against my brother”, says Championship Leader Cristian. “People maybe think he deliberately made another rider crash to help me win during the last event; but they couldn’t be more wrong. My biggest enemy is my brother, and it’s thanks to this that we’ve both reached such a good level… we are always pushing each other” Cristian confirms.

We asked them about their hopes for the 2020 MotoGP eSports season, and their eyes lit up; “We want to try to choose first again, so we can continue to be SUZUKI ECSTAR MotoGP eRiders! We are very thankful to Suzuki, and also to Williams Esports, for helping to make all this possible.Concludes the youngest of the two brothers.

And to finish, the question you might be waiting for… Do they ride in real life? “Yes, we ride the bike we won last year. We would like to try a racing bike on a circuit but here, in Canarias, we have no circuits” says Adrián.

We hope that the first time these brothers take to a real life track it will be with a Suzuki, but in the mean time we’re happy to see them racing their eSports GSX-RR and putting it in winning positions!

Ahead of the Game
Ahead of the Game
Ahead of the Game
Ahead of the Game

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