The event took part ahead of The Race’s All-Star Esports Battle on Saturday, as famous names from across the ages of motorsport took part in a simulated race at Silverstone’s National Circuit. With all the drivers using Brabham BT44s, Franchitti inherited the lead when Juan Pablo Montoya collided with Emanuele Pirro in the first turn.
Franchitti, racing on kit borrowed from Darren Turner, never relinquished the lead, with Turner himself coming home second. The race also marked the esports debut of Emerson Fittipaldi – who won the real 1975 race at Silverstone in a McLaren M23, against the BT44 of Carlos Pace – while David Brabham, racing a car his father built, came home in fourth.
Sim racer Bono Huis won the main event, leading the first World’s Fastest Gamer champion Rudy van Buren home. The fastest real-world racing driver was Philipp Eng, in fifth.
Elsewhere, the pro drivers in the IndyCar iRacing Challenge raced at Watkins Glen, with Sage Karam coming out on top, ahead of Felix Rosenqvist and Will Power. Timmy Hill, an experienced iRacing driver with almost 100 real NASCAR Cup Series starts to his name, won the equivalent race in the NASCAR Pro Invitational, leading Ryan Preece home by just 0.05 seconds at the virtual Texas Motor Speedway.
Lando Norris had an evening to remember in the first Veloce Esports Pro Series event. The British McLaren driver won the first race at Silverstone comfortably, with a 10 second advantage over second season World’s Fastest Gamer James Baldwin, then carved through the pack – which included Stoffel Vandoorne, Esteban Guttierez and Antonio Felix da Costa – to take second in the reverse grid race.
The biggest point of controversy of the weekend came in the SRO Charity Challenge, which saw sim racer Arthur Kammerer take the victory. Kammerer inherited the lead courtesy of an incident between the front row drivers Amir Hosseini and Niels Naujoks, in which Hosseini appeared to crowd Naujoks off the Monza circuit at Curva Grande but come off second-best in the process. Race Control gave Naujoks a 15 second penalty for the incident. Lamborghini driver Dennis Lind was best of the real-world racers in eighth.
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