Esports world is so much competitive, to get on top of the F1 Pro Series you have to be very talented. Tomek Poradzisz is a 13 year old- boy from Poland, he is part of Veloce Esports, and in my humble opinion he is the future of the F1 Esports. I was so lucky to interview him, here’s what he told me.
How would you describe your driving style?
“I think I drive rather smoothly, at the same time I seem to be good in maximizing the track width. I like to setup the car with a small touch of understeer, so the car is a bit more stable and at the same time I can push it harder and fight the understeer rather than oversteer. Also I am quite good on tires, I manage both temperatures and the wear very well, I think I have never lost the race because of bad tyre management”.
Do you play other racing games apart from F1?
” I do, but very rarely. I take F1 games as my kind of a “job” and I never really drive anything else, just so I don’t get used to any different car too much. I also feel like I have enough driving in F1, so when I am not driving, I just rather hop onto games like CSGO. I did a few endurance races on rFactor 2 and did few league races in Assetto Corsa, but that’s it”.
How have you discovered F1?
” My dad got me into it when I was a small child, 3-4 years old. He got into it because of Robert Kubica who just had his debut in 2006. I’ve got into it a lot and been watching races from 2010 to 2014 consistently. However, with Kubica’s accident, we got kind of bored and mid-2014 I stopped watching it. 3 years later, while browsing through TV channels and saw a Formula E qualifying. Suddenly, my passion to F1 came back. Started playing old F1 2013 on a pad, slowly turning assists off, bought my first wheel (Thrustmaster T100), kept playing F1 2013 before I managed to save up for F1 2017 few months later.Then started just improving and signed up to AOR in January 2018, after getting a T300RS”.
Have you got a favourite driver? (Current or past)
“I do have two at the moment, I haven’t been watching F1 long enough to have any from the past. I support mostly George Russell and Lewis Hamilton, Russell because of how he’s progressed through F3 and F2 and because of his mentality which is really sportsmanlike, and Lewis because he’s really inspiring to me and I love the fact he has a big passion outside F1”.
How do you feel being a part of Veloce Esports?
“It feels amazing, I dreamt about joining them since I heard about them. It’s just so satisfying to know that group of professionals who have the best individuals in their team put faith in you and appreciated your work. It definitely is one of the best things that happened to me in my life”.
How does it feel to be so young and to compete on a daily basis with drivers who will take part in the Pro Series?
“It feels good, but at the same time it does annoy me. Competing with people who are driving in Pro Series, but at the same time not being able to drive in Esports because of age limits. I feel like I am losing out on so much, I am confident F1 teams would choose me by now, would be a huge dream come true and my life would completely change. Yet I am stuck here for 3 more years, and it feels awful”.
Do you think you have a future competing in the esport?
“I believe in that. Definitely the only thing that may really stop me is if I lose motivation sometime during these 3 years that I need to wait before competing. Many people told me by 16 years old I’ll be one of the best in the world, and I’m quite confident I can do it and the future is just waiting for me”.
How many championships do you compete in? Why?
“I participate in 3-4 leagues, however AOR is the only one I take really serious. I race there as I have a passion for it, and I want to keep improving, and thanks to leagues like AOR I can compete against the very best and show my skills. It was my driving in AOR that got me into Veloce Esports for example”.
Have you ever done a challenge for the esports?
“I’ve done it a few times, never took it seriously as it’s quite pointless for me. Every single time I did it I was inside top 8 (which qualified) though”.
How do you train for An AOR race?
“Me with friends just make a session with all the AOR settings, do the qualifying, few laps of the race and then we restart the session, and again, quali, first stint, restart, it goes on.We start around Wednesday and we do from 2 to 7 hours of practice daily”.
Does being part of Veloce Esports helped you improving as a driver?
“They did, not only have I got a powerful PC which made me able to run the game smoothly, but they gave me the opportunity to work with their other drivers, also the Sauber Esports drivers, and I keep improving quicker and quicker since I’ve signed for them”.
When did you understand you were so fast? Have you had a breakout race?
“There wasn’t any breakout if I’m honest, I’ve been improving very consistently, didn’t have any moment where I became fast, just slowly but surely getting there”.
Can you tell your objectives for the near future?
“Near future is definitely to improve and try to get to the very top in online competitions, having opportunity to compare myself with Sauber drivers for example pushes me to the limits and I want to start winning races in AOR F1. Definitely staying at Veloce is the main objective, I really need to impress them”.
Which is the best esports lineup?
“I definitely think Sauber has a strong lineup, but the challenge from Mercedes and Brendon Leigh is huge. I also think Red Bull and Renault are ones to watch. It’ll surely make up for an exciting season”.
What is your prediction for the AOR F1 PC?
“I think anything can happen, but once esports ends the esport drivers will up their game. Right now, anyone can go for the title, and I think I can even get it if I keep consistent results and improve more. Dani, Jarno, these are ones to watch definitely. Time will show I guess”.
It was a pleasure to have a chat with Tomek, he is a funny guy, he is focused on his future and he knows what he is capble of. I hope the best for him and Veloce Esports, and, who knows, maybe in a few years i will be writing about Tomek victories in the Pro Series.