F1 2021 launched to much fanfare in July, but there was a sense of the game being incomplete as three of the 2021 season’s tracks were missing, as well as a few other bits of content.
On 13 September, Codemasters announced that, from today, new content is coming to F1 2021, including the highly-anticipated tracks of Portimão, Imola, and Jeddah.
New tracks highlight free F1 2021 updates
The biggest addition as far as fans are concerned will be news that, from 13 September, the Portimão, Imola, and Jeddah circuits will be added into the game. Portimão is the first, available on 13 September, with Imola following in October, and Jeddah in November.
Portimão has hosted the Portuguese Grand Prix in 2020 and 2021, but was a late addition to this year’s calendar, as was Imola. Jeddah, in Saudi Arabia, is a street track that’s still undergoing construction.
F1 2021 launched without these three tracks, but Codemasters said that they would be available later on as free updates, and that is exactly what is happening right now.
Aston Martin safety car and performance updates
The 13 September F1 2021 patch will see more features added alongside the release of the Portimão track. This year, F1 is dovetailing its safety car duties between Mercedes and Aston Martin.
The release of the game only saw the Mercedes safety car in play, but now the Aston Martin Vantage safety car will be added. The Aston will be deployed at certain events, as in real life, such as the Great Britain and Bahrain Grand Prix events, whilst at the other meets, the Mercedes will be used.
The performance update is a big deal for those who play the game and watch the real racing. This, also available on 13 September, will update the performance of the cars to reflect the real 2021 season much more accurately.
For example, Mercedes are easily the fastest in-game when the reality is they and Red Bull are incredibly close, with the latter perhaps being slightly ahead. This patch will amend that and any other performance deficits, such as by also changing Williams so that they are faster than the Alfa Romeo cars.
More updates to come to F1 2021
Following on from this update, Codemasters have also announced two other major updates that will happen before the real life 2021 season is over.
In October, the Imola Circuit will be added to the game, as will livery updates to the cars to reflect any sponsor changes and design tweaks that have happened since the first race of the season.
November sees the last major content update announced today, with the Saudi Arabia street circuit in Jeddah coming to F1 2021. Here, the Codemasters title will also add its 2021 F2 season update, giving us both the 2020 and 2021 seasons at a much earlier date than we had with the 2020 F2 season update in F1 2020.
It is a relief to finally have news on these updates to F1 2021, and to see that they will come before the end of the real 2021 season. A lot of work will have gone into making sure that these tracks are released as soon as possible, however, it still is disappointing that the real season will nearly be over before they appear in-game, with F1 2021 really having quite a short life-cycle.
Still, players of the game now have a time frame for when this content is coming and some fantastic preview shots of these new circuits, which are quite clearly the highlights of the updates.