I think it will only look promising if Nadeo starts focusing more on esports again when it comes to TrackMania. Though I haven't really got any indications that that will be the case. I guess we will find out soon.
I think to secure TrackMania as an esport it requires a shared effort from both the community AND the developers. I think it's the community's role to make up the standards for how the esport should work, but it's the developers role to let the community do that by being supportive, as well as taking feedback from the community and work alongside them.
But TrackMania is even more complicated than that because of its nature with several different environments. I've said this before but I think it's worth saying again: I think there needs to be a more concentrated goal when it comes to esports, and that's with just using 1 environment to represent TrackMania in esports. I just can't see us become a proper esport with the way its been going ever since Freezone and then Canyon were introduced.
Incapable of changing it, I hope not. The discussion about a TrackMania Federation started about 2 years ago in a private forum by tRkr/Sulli if I'm not mistaken. The core subjects discussed was
1. Map-pack distribution
3. Cooperation between the tournament hosters
4. Separate web-page for the TrackMania Federation
Among other topics related to TrackMania as a future sustainable E-sport game. The problems was lack of resources. We only came as far as talking/discussing. What we missed was a project leader and web developer to create it. Maybe when TrackMania 2: Stadium is launched we can take advantage of the transition and gather resources enough to get the competition scene on the right way?
I don't think it's the best time to communicate about it, but be aware this project is still valid. Sulli tries to improve federation website by adding partnerships with organizations like et, esl and eswc but his job and girlfriend take him a lot of time.
This is a kind of beta version but idea is there. Don't hesitate to contact him if you need further informations. I guess he will give more news about it when stadium 2 will come. Be patient!
Just wait for the beta of TM² Stadium!