Another popularity boost for F1 with Singapore track included in latest Call of Duty

Sam Cooper
Charles Leclerc passes a grandstand in Singapore GP qualifying. Marina Bay September 2019.

Charles Leclerc's Ferrari passes a grandstand in Singapore Grand Prix qualifying. Marina Bay September 2019.

The Singapore Grand Prix track has been added as a playable map for the new Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 game.

Gamers will be able to fight around the Marina Bay circuit in six player vs six player matches when the latest edition of the series is released in October.

Call of Duty is the fourth most popular video game series of all time having sold 425 million copies, and it is a sign of Formula 1’s growing popularity that one of the sport’s tracks is being added to the game.

Capitalising on the latest trend in F1 media, the game’s publishers, Infinity Ward, sent out a tweet in the style of Oscar Piastri’s public snubbing of an Alpine seat to confirm the news.

“We understand that, with our agreement, @infinityward have announced they designed a Grand Prix map as a part of the #MWII Beta. This is right, and the map will be playable for the 2022 Beta. We will be playing on Grand Prix in #MWII this year,” the tweet read.

The tweet also included a video which appeared to show the pit lane, as well as a car with the same colour scheme as Red Bull‘s. There is also a papaya orange car shown later on which resembles the current McLaren race car.

It is not the first time Formula 1 has been involved in the Call of Duty series after Lewis Hamilton featured as a non-playable character in 2016’s Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare.

The game will be released on October 28, a few weeks after the sport’s return to Singapore having not raced there since the COVID pandemic. Players will, however, get an early taste of the map as it will feature in a beta which will run from September 24-26.

Call of Duty nod the latest example of Formula 1’s explosion in popularity

It would have been hard to convince a race fan of 10 years ago that a Formula 1 track would be included in one of the most popular video game series and that it would not seem out of place.

The sport’s popularity has gone through the roof in the last decade, which can be attributed to owners Liberty Media and the revamping of the way F1 presents itself.

Netflix’s ‘Drive to Survive’ has been monumental in changing the perception of F1 from 20 cars going around a track to 20 drivers, each with their own story and narrative.

The popularity of the sport has grown no more so than in the US, where Infinity Ward is based, and as well as the inclusion in Call of Duty, the three US-based races that are slated for next year at the possible cost of some of the sport’s most historic tracks suggest Liberty Media are not done yet.