I think the more incredible thing is none of those three would be the racing GOTY anyway. F1 2017 is just obscenely comprehensive right down to McLaren’s infamous Honda engine issues. Teaches you the strategy and is just an incredibly customisable. And now, F1’s new parent company, Liberty Media, have taken a massive interest in the game and its fortunes including positioning it as an e-sport. Compared to ol’ Bernie just seeing it as another cash flow. The 2018 edition might be something special with Liberty Media exuding a lot more influence over its development. You add in scrappy underdogs like 704 Games NASCAR Heat 2 which has actual investment from NASCAR Drivers (In particular Brad Keselowski) and Toyota which is really starting to dial in a more authentic experience while remaining accessible (And probably the best CPU AI of any racing game out there. It’s wonderfully aware and reactive).
Then there’s Milestone’s growing presence covering the bike sector with most of the major bike series being covered including a Supecross series game next year. And you start to get a bigger picture of how Motorsport and motor companies itself sees how gaming is important to their lines (Insane Toyota pullout from the major franchises notwithstanding, but than Toyota has a huge branding and image problem at the moment. Motoring blogs calling them “Boring” and the 86 being a flop seemed to set them off something fierce). It’s the craziest year for the big names to flub their racing line and put a wheel on the grass because of how seriously the motorsport industry is taking them now.
(Though I have noticed Turn 10 have once again killed their own monetization system as the mod packs are only 20-40k credits now and you can make ridiculous amounts with mod combos and Forza editions. It’s back to near trivial Forza 4 levels of credits, but not quite “You can have a Veyron in the first hour or two” crazy of Forza 6)