2017 Formula Virtual season
| 2017 FVA Formula Virtual|
World Championship season
|Drivers' Champion: Nathaniel Powers|
|Constructors' Champions: Downton|
|Previous: 2016||Next: 2018|
| Top tier:|
FV • IndyVirtual
| Second tier:|
FV2 • VWRS
| Third tier:|
FV3 • VERS • VARS • VOARS
The 2017 Formula Virtual season is the fifth season of the Formula Virtual World Championship. The series is a virtual motor racing championship run by Nic Morley for members of the F1 Fanatic website and is recognised by the Formula Virtual Association (FVA) governing body as the highest class of competition for virtual motor racing. Teams and drivers are participating in eighteen V-Prix's starting in Australia on 26 March and finishing in Brazil on 3 December as they compete for the World Drivers' and World Constructors' championships.
Adrien Simon started the season as the reigning Drivers' Champion, after winning his first title in the last race of 2016, but was knocked out of contention to retain it at the Canadian V-Prix. His team DS Mathershaw started the season as the defending Constructors' champions, having secured their first title at the 2016 Mexican V-Prix.
2013 Champion Nathaniel Powers became the first driver to win multiple titles, beating his rookie team mate Klaas van Snelheid by two points at the final race of the season in Brazil. Powers had the most wins with 7, poles with 10 and points with 286 - and set season records for all of them, while van Snelheid took six wins in his maiden campaign, the first of which came in only his third career start at the Japanese V-Prix. Defending Champion Adrien Simon finished third overall and was the only non-Downton driver to take multiple wins.
As a result of their dominance, Downton won their maiden Constructors' Championship in Bahrain with four races to go and ended the season on 570 points, 263 clear of DS Mathershaw. The final race saw a change for third place as former Champions Franklin overcame Westwood to finish ahead by just four points.
- 1 Teams and drivers
- 2 Calendar
- 3 Rule changes
- 4 Season report
- 5 Results and standings
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Teams and drivers
The following teams and drivers are currently scheduled to participate in the fifth season of the Formula Virtual World Championship.
[N 1] Harding was entered in the French V-Prix, but withdrew following practice.
- Downton and DS announced they would withdraw their engine supply for 2017, forcing Lopez and Ocelot to look elsewhere. Ocelot later entered into a technical partnership with Franklin, and confirmed they would run with Honda engines, while DS and Downton reversed their decision to not supply Lopez.
- Westwood decided against running their own engines for a fourth season and instead returned to being a customer, provided with engines by Renault in a link-up with Holmqvist.
- FUN switched engine suppliers from Yamaha to Volvo, who will make their debut in the series as an engine supplier.
- Judson Sikes - who had been on loan at North Star from Ocelot in 2016 - remained with the team after they brought out his contract.
- Enzo Domenicalli will return to the series as reserve driver for Ocelot after his horror accident in the 2015 Japanese V-Prix that - combined with Rossi's withdrawal from the championship - ruled him out of the 2016 season.
- Having raced with the team in 2016, Kiara Thunder will remain with Holmqvist after they purchased her contract from Downton.
- Marcus Thunder will step down to reserve driver duties at Downton and instead switch to IndyVirtual. He will be replaced by Klaas van Snelheid, who will move up to the series from FV2.
- Oleksandr Zozulya will be promoted by FIRST to be their reserve driver, replacing Jamie Gerrard who will return to Meteor as reserve driver.
- Elroy Wagner will leave Franklin after two seasons to switch to Lopez, replacing Jochem van Snelheid who will leave the team to go the other way and take Wagner's seat at Franklin. Abel Osterhagen will also leave Lopez while Viktor Östberg joins as reserve driver, replacing Osterhagen.
- Olen Inman will leave DS Mathershaw after a single season and switch to FUN, replacing Will Hoskins who left the team after joining part-way through the 2016 season.
- DS Mathershaw reserve driver Allar Kangur will replace Inman at the team while former youth driver Thierry Xylander will fill the reserve role.
- Finn Schnyder is set to be promoted by Westwood to the race team alongside Tumo Kinnumen, while Nikolajis Christodoulou - who was parachuted into the seat to replace Kip Maxwell midway through 2016 - will step back to the reserve duty he filled at the start of the previous season.
- Having left FUN, Will Hoskins was later announced at AMR driving alongside Felix Beyer. The team also signed Dmytro Kovalenko as a second reserve driver after he left Downton.
- Jacinto van Slooten left his position of reserve driver at North Star and was replaced by Gabriele García. 
- Rodolfo de la Fuente was promoted by Franklin to the reserve driver role, replacing Felipe Cesar who left the team to race in IndyVirtual. 
- Following the 2017 Japanese V-Prix - in which Franklin team boss Jamie Franklin was critical of Jochem van Snelheid's performance - it was announced they had agreed a deal with technical partners Ocelot to switch van Snelheid with Puccio Giodano for the remainder of the season. 
- Prior to the 2017 French V-Prix it was announced Oleksandr Zozulya would replace Douglas Bacon as race driver at FIRST for the remainder of the season, with Bacon stepping back into the reserve role. 
- After practice for the French V-Prix, it was announced by Lopez that James Harding was still suffering the effects of the crash at the previous round in China, and would be replaced for the race by the teams reserve driver Viktor Östberg. 
- Following the French V-Prix, Holmqvist announced they were to part company with Aron Einarsson with immediate effect.  The day after, it was confirmed a deal had been agreed with IndyVirtual team Kannan GP to swap Einarsson and Lewis Ellington for the remainder of the season. 
- On 11th May Ingram announced reserve driver Diego Campos was to make two final race appearances before leaving the team at the end of the season. Campos will take over Nikolai Milkovich's car for his home race in Spain and Jean Mattson's in the United States - the scene of his and the team's maiden victory in 2014. 
- In the build-up to the Austrian V-Prix, Holmqvist announced that Hugh Dwyer would join the team replacing Kiara Thunder, who would go the other way to take Dwyer's seat at Grip Autosport in IndyVirtual for the remainder of the season. 
- Following the British V-Prix it was announced by North Star that their driver Aleksy Nowosinki would be leaving the team with immediate effect in a deal to swap him for the remainder of the season with Ocelot driver Karl Beckenbauer. 
The following eighteen events are scheduled to take place in 2017. 
|1||Australian V-Prix||Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit, Phillip Island||26 March|
|2||Malaysian V-Prix||Sepang International Circuit, Kuala Lumpur||2 April|
|3||Japanese V-Prix||Fuji Speedway, Oyama||16 April|
|4||Chinese V-Prix||Shanghai International Circuit, Shanghai||23 April|
|5||French V-Prix||Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet||7 May|
|6||Spanish V-Prix||Circuito Permanente de Jerez, Jerez de la Frontera||21 May|
|7||German V-Prix||Hockenheimring, Hockenheim||5 June *|
|8||Austrian V-Prix||Red Bull Ring, Spielberg||25 June|
|9||British V-Prix||Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone||9 July|
|10||Belgian V-Prix||Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps, Francorchamps||30 July|
|11||Italian V-Prix||Autodromo Nazionale Monza, Monza||6 August|
|12||Portuguese V-Prix||Autodromo do Estoril, Estoril||17 September|
|13||Turkish V-Prix||Istanbul Park, Istanbul||24 September|
|14||Bahrain V-Prix||Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir||15 October|
|15||Canadian V-Prix||Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montreal||29 October|
|16||United States V-Prix||Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Indianapolis||5 November|
|17||Mexican V-Prix||Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez, Mexico City||26 November|
|18||Brazilian V-Prix||Autódromo José Carlos Pace, São Paulo||3 December|
- The Austrian V-Prix returned to the calendar after a two year absence - once again taking place at the Red Bull Ring in Austria - replacing the Dutch V-Prix. 
- The Australian V-Prix was set to be once again held at the Albert Park circuit, however complications with the agreement saw the race moved to Phillip Island.
The driver/car ratio will be amended ahead of the season to place more emphasis on driver skill as opposed to car performance than there has been for the 2015 & 2016 seasons. While development will still be very important, drivers will now be able to make more of a difference.
After two seasons both Michelin and Firestone will depart the series as it makes a return to a sole tyre manufacturer, as was the case in 2013 & 2014. This sole manufacturer will be Goodyear, who make their debut in Formula Virtual at the first race of the season.
The option for a team to withdraw a bid on a driver was removed before the season, ensuring teams would only bid on drivers they were genuinely interested in signing. Each team will be allowed one 'joker' bid that they can withdraw, but only if approved by Nic Morley.
Any driver who is aged 32 or older and is not re-signed at least two races before the end of a season, will officially retire from Formula Virtual. All drivers will automatically retire at the end of the season in which they turn 38 years old. Teams cannot prematurely retire drivers.
Driver improvement points
With the introduction of a driver retirement age, the improvement points age bands were amended as follows:
- 28 and under: +2%
- 32 and under: +1%
- 34 and under: +0%
- 36 and under: -1%
- 37 and under: -2%
Added to each ability area.
Driver prices will undergo big changes akin to those in 2014 when they were severely reduced. The driver prices from 2017 onwards are:
- 1st: £10,000,000
- 2nd: £9,500,000
- 3rd: £9,000,000
- 4th: £8,500,000
- 5th: £8,000,000
- 6th: £7,500,000
- 7th: £7,000,000
- 8th: £6,500,000
- 9th: £6,000,000
- 10th: £5,500,000
- 11th: £5,000,000
- 12th: £4,500,000
- 13th: £4,000,000
- 14th: £3,500,000
- 15th: £3,000,000
- 16th: £2,500,000
- 17th: £2,000,000
- 18th: £1,750,000
- 19th: £1,500,000
- 20th: £1,250,000
- 21st: £1,000,000
- 22nd: £900,000
- 23rd: £800,000
- 24th: £700,000
- 25th: £600,000
- 26th and below: £500,000
- See also: 2017 Formula Virtual pre-season testing
Results and standings
Points are awarded to the top ten classified finishers using the following structure:
- Downton announce DS tie-in
- Inman and Simon retained for 2017
- DS Mathershaw name Allar Kangur as second driver for 2017
- Virgin power for Meteor
- Meteor announce complete driver line-up
- No changes for Harrison at Meteor
- Inman makes shock move to FUN-Volvo for 2017
- FUN-FV Finally reveal their new livery & announce their test-driver
- Ocelot announces partnership for 2017
- Franklin unhappy with Wagner's performance
- de la Fuente signed as Franklin reserve
- Franklin announce second driver
- Puccio Giodano to replace Jochem van Snelheid at Franklin
- Ingram confirm Milkovich for two more years
- Ingram keep Campos, fans stifle yawn
- Campos to get two races in 2017
- Ingram confirm Mattson for 2017
- DS and Downton confirm Lopez as 2017 customer
- Lopez bluffs Formula Virtual
- Harding to battle on in 2017
- Breaking News from Lopez
- Beyer to continue with AMR
- Hoskins to partner Beyer at AMR for 2017
- Westwood Talks Engines and Drivers (...AGAIN)
- Westwood End 2017 Driver Speculation (Finally)
- Klaas van Snelheid to race for Downton in 2017
- Downton duo to stay on for another two years
- Marcus Thunder switches to IndyVirtual in 2017 Formula Virtual sabbatical
- Downton and DS withdraw engine supply
- Domenicalli joins Ocelot for 2017
- Beckenbauer remains as Ocelot
- Nowosinki out at North Star in seat swap shock
- FIRST Motorsport join 2016 grid
- FIRST announce lead driver and tyre supplier
- Zozulya confirmed as FIRST reserve driver
- Bacon to continue with FIRST in 2017
- Oleksandr Zozulya to replace Douglas Bacon from French V-Prix
- North Star clash with BMW over third driver
- Sikes staying at North Star for 2017
- García given nod as North Star reserve
- No change at North Star: Nowosinki stays for 2017
- Holmqvist to field unchanged line-up for 2017
- Ellington announced as shock Einarsson replacement
- Dwyer to replace Thunder at Holmqvist
- Lopez confirm exiting drivers
- Einarsson ditched just hours after maiden point
- 2017 Formula Virtual race calendar confirmed
- German V-Prix delayed until Monday due to track break-up
|Formula Virtual seasons|
|2013 • 2014 • 2015 • 2016 • 2017 • 2018 • 2019 • 2020|