esports + NFTs: McLaren Races into web3 with a Shadow-Liveried MCL36 Digital Collectible
McLaren esports has partnered with Sweet on a unique NFT release to help bring the electricity and excitement of Formula 1 racing into the gaming world. As discussed in previous posts, McLaren Racing is a legendary team within the F1 sport. It only made sense that McLaren would also enter the esports world, which they did back in 2017 with their McLaren Shadow Project. This NFT release will allow McLaren Shadow to introduce their 2022 esports team, while also delivering unique digital collectibles with some amazing utility to their fans.
McLaren Shadow will hold three live stream events on Twitch (https://www.twitch.tv/mclarenshadow) from July 25–28 to announce their lineup of esports drivers who will be competing in virtual racing events across the world. Fans who attend one of these live streams can claim a Shadow access token on a first-come, first serve basis. A QR code will pop up during each live stream event where attendees can easily scan and redeem their Shadow access tokens with a smartphone. Fans who obtain the access token will be whitelisted for an opportunity to purchase the McLaren Shadow Livery MCL36 digital collectible in advance of its general release.
Starting Friday, July 29th at 11am ET, the McLaren Shadow NFT will be made available to fans who are whitelisted via the Shadow access token — release to the general public will follow a few days later on Monday, August 1st at 11am ET. Fans who purchase the McLaren Shadow digital collectible on the primary market will be entitled to some incredible benefits. These include a virtual coaching session from a professional esports driver with a chance to put their new skills to the test by racing their coach in a game. NFT holders will also be entered into a raffle to win a Logitech gaming wheel and pedal rig that Lando Norris, Daniel Ricciardo, and the Shadow drivers all personally signed. But that’s not all! Those who are in possession of the McLaren Shadow NFT will be entered into a raffle to win a hoodie that is also signed by Lando and Daniel. The full Shadow Livery MCL36 NFT holder benefits are listed here: https://www.mclarenracingcollective.com. All sales of the digital collectibles will be made available via the Sweet marketplace.
This digital collectible marks a web3 debut for both McLaren Shadow and the MCL36 car. The MCL36 and its Shadow-liveried digital version caused lots of excitement online when they were revealed during a team launch event in February 2022. The design quickly became a hit, and McLaren knew immediately that they had to give esports and McLaren fans a chance to collect the car.
Sweet has partnered with McLaren Racing on four NFT releases to date, and this is our first with the McLaren Shadow esports team. As was the case with all previous McLaren Racing NFTs, the McLaren Shadow NFTs are also minted on the Tezos blockchain. Tezos is one of the leading smart contracts Proof of Stake blockchains that was built to ensure active community governance and participation. Users can directly and frictionlessly interface with one other over a decentralized network and exchange value without the need for intermediaries. The blockchain stays true to a web3 vision of user-governance and a user-centric approach in making key decisions. Tezos is also an energy-efficient alternative to more traditional proof of work blockchains, using significantly less energy to power its use.
esports has come a long way since its early beginnings in mid-1958 when the first competitive gameplay appeared and was known as Tennis for Two. The emergence of the internet in the 1990s gave way for more opportunities within esports, as new games like Doom, Quake, and Age of Empires were made available. By 2021, more than two hundred million dollars was awarded across more than 4,200 tournaments in esports play. Yes, you read that right! It goes without saying that Sweet is very excited to be partnering with McLaren Shadow as they look to leave their mark within the esports world. If McLaren Racing is a marker of things to come, we are about to witness and be a part of some amazing esports history.