FIM Speedway previews Metaverse experience | News

FIM Speedway has previewed an interactive virtual reality experience, called the FIM Speedway Metaverse Season, as part of its activities to mark its 100th anniversary.

The project, which focuses on interactive fan engagement through Web3 technology, is being created in conjunction with the events division of Warner Bros Discovery Sports Europe and immersive specialist Infinite Reality.    

A test group of fans were recently given access to a preview of the virtual reality platform on Google’s Chrome browser. No VR glasses were needed to enter the virtual world.

Closer to rollout, the aim is for the FIM Speedway Metaverse Season to be accessible through a mobile app.

The preview of the experience featured a range of innovations, including:

Virtual Skyboxes – The metaverse provides opportunities to engage audiences and help them learn about Speedway by enabling them to interact, discover, and play through specially designed Virtual Skyboxes hovering above the track.

Meet and Greets – Virtual lounge areas and a shop provided spaces to meet and greet Speedway riders, legends, and other fans, as well as access to exclusive FIM Speedway merchandise.

Content Zones – Areas to access additional on-demand video content that tells the story of the sport beyond the racetrack.

Live Race Data – Screens that display data direct from the riders to help viewers unpick the action.

Avatar Overhead Video and Audio Chat – Provides deeper socialisation between users.

Generative AI Host – Provides real-time information and insights about the Speedway experience.

Dynamic Camera Selection – Enables users to switch between first- or third-person view.

Customisable Video Stream Feed Selection – Including a trackside view, enabling users to become the directors of their own experience within the metaverse.

Map Teleportation – Enabling quick multi-area exploration.

NRG Partner Survey Research (NRG) assessed the reactions of the fans to the metaverse preview. It said 96% of attendees found the experience to be innovative, 98% found the track view showcased in the Skybox and Lounge to be appealing, while 96% like the Meet and Greet feature with riders. The average user stayed in the immersive experience for 138 minutes.

Jean-Baptiste Ley, motorsport series leader at Warner Bros. Discovery Sports Europe, said: “When we became FIM Speedway GP’s global promoter in 2022, we committed to further elevate this fantastic sport and serve the existing loyal Speedway community that has been built over the last century.

“The preview of the FIM Speedway Metaverse experience has been an opportunity to test how fans can engage with their sport in new ways, as well as open a window into opportunities to attract new and different fans to Speedway in the future. The preview provides innovative ways to explore the world around the live race action that fans currently enjoy, showing how fans in the future can enter an exciting experience that allows them to fully-immerse themselves in the sport during and between races.”

Francois Ribeiro, CEO, Europe, Infinite Reality, added: “It is a pleasure to play our part in helping FIM Speedway celebrate its centenary milestone, building a preview experience that shows a glimpse of what the future will bring to this exciting sport. The Metaverse offers fans – wherever they are in the world – the opportunity to try something new and immerse themselves in the FIM Speedway GP series – learning more about the sport, meeting their heroes and sharing with friends.”