The good news first: There are no covid restrictions left in Denmark. So nationally there are currently no barriers stopping us from entertaining the physical LAN event. This is a very uplifting and promising situation to keep in mind for the next parts of this message, and for 2022.
There are however sadly a lot of restrictions in place in other countries in Europe and the world in general. We ran a questionnaire amongst the teams that indicate only 9 to 13 teams are currently planning on travelling on location.
To make such an event possible it would have to be financially viable. And with only 13 teams it will be impossible for us to sell the needed exhibition stands and spectator tickets. We are far beyond the times when this event could be run by volunteers and entry fees. It takes 6,500 € to rent the arena that we have available for the weekend. It takes 12,000 € in travelling and accommodation for the crew and commentary.
The rough truth of it is it would take up the same amount of work to land the needed funds through stream partners, exhibition stands and spectator tickets, as it would with 45 to 50 teams. And the local public interest both from businesses and spectators would dwindle quickly if only 9 teams are present at the venue.
On top of the financial concerns there are the even more important concerns to people’s health. Your health. Although the SARS Covid-19 virus seems to pass the vast majority of us as if it were just a tough ordinary flu, there are a lot more that suffer long term effects. Damage to lung tissue is no joke and can render you unable to work and live a normal life for months, sometimes years or even for the rest of your life. And many of the teams choosing not to travel to Denmark mention exactly the fear of their health as the main concern. We will not be forcing anyone to take actions that make you fear for your general well being. We are kindly asking the teams that were planning to take part in the event to please respect this decision by the teams that don’t want to run this risk.
That is why during the weekend the board made the unanimous decision to cancel the live Le Mans event for 2021 and shift our focus to 2022. We are working with Copenhagen Games to arrange racing events during the 2022 Copenhagen Games from 13th to 16th of April 2022. This will not be a 24-hour race, but most likely a small series of races with a championship tied to it.
The 2021 Le Mans event will be a purely online event with as much of our commentary crew and associates on location in the studio in Strib, Denmark. Our focus is now on making this the best online race ever, and on looking forward to 2022. You already have the calendar for 2022 and we are working with partners to make prizes, coverage of the races and opportunities for the teams even greater. Expect 2022 to be even more about you, the teams. Sim racing has to be about the stars of the sport. That means it is all about you!
The 2022 Le Mans race will be in Middelfart. It will cover three sporting arenas and combine our traditional Le Mans race with a gentlemen’s lifestyle fair. There will be local clothing stores, sports, bicycle, travel agencies, car dealerships, wine and delicacy stores, hobby stores etc. All centred around catering to the adventurous man or father and son experiences. The plan is to have no entry fee for spectators and having the exhibiting companies cover the costs of arranging the event. We are planning, like we were for 2021, to have commentary in both Danish and English. We are looking into having a hardware supplier deliver all the computers needed and maybe even have full sim rigs in place for all teams, which would dramatically cut the travelling expenses of all teams. And there are many more deals on the table.
With that said, we hope to see you all for the 2021 online Le Mans race and in Middelfart in 2022.