Australia’s first national championships for cycling esports will take place next March as part of the Brisbane Cycling Festival, thanks to a new partnership with QUT announced today by AusCycling.
The 2024 AusCycling Esports National Championships will be held in person at The Cube on the QUT Gardens Point campus on March 22.
The final, which will be contested on Zwift and broadcast by SBS, will be an omnium-style multi-round event, taking cues from the latest UCI Cycling Esports World Championships.
It will be the first in-person esports race hosted by AusCycling and will provide an exciting, interactive atmosphere for athletes and fans.
Qualifying rounds during March will decide eight of the male and female finalists who will compete in Brisbane. All Australian adults on Zwift with an AusCycling race licence will be eligible to qualify.
AusCycling has indicated it may also invite wildcard riders to the final. Competitors will race for the iconic green-and-gold jersey of Australian champion, which will be awarded both physically and digitally to the winners.
The QUT three-year major partnership with the Brisbane Cycling Festival will see it recognised as the Official Higher Education Partner of the festival through to 2026.
Kipp Kaufmann, Executive General Manager of Sport at AusCycling, said: “It will be very exciting to award an Australian champion’s jersey in cycling esports for the first time.
“After years of hosting national esports events and fielding successful teams at world championships, this is the next step forward for AusCycling in this growing discipline.
“The in-person format has three major advantages. One, it improves the integrity of the race and fairness for the competitors. Two, it enables us to provide a higher-quality broadcast. Three, we can invite a crowd to generate atmosphere that will energise the riders and entertain fans.
“Thank you to our partners at QUT, Brisbane Cycling Festival and Zwift for enabling us to deliver this new event in 2024.”
QUT Director of Sport Emily Rosemond said QUT was thrilled to be at the forefront of innovation in sports, collaborating with AusCycling to host the first-ever in-person Esports National Championships as part of the Brisbane Cycling Festival this coming March.
“It will be fantastic to offer our students a unique chance to immerse themselves in the event—whether through participation in the trials leading in or by contributing to the event's delivery, including the production, and broadcasting,” Ms Rosemond said.
“We're equally excited about the opportunity to connect with new virtual cycling markets in partnership with AusCycling, engaging enthusiasts who may not have experienced the thrill of esports cycling before, particularly as the world embraces esports and virtual sports, following the IOC’s inaugural Olympic Esports Week.”
For details, visit the AusCycling Esports National Championships webpage.