Le Mans Virtual Grand Prix is evolving into more than just a race event that amazes racing fans from all over the world. Moreover, the best drivers spend hours preparing rather than sunbathing or partying, even if the 24 Hours of Le Mans is only virtual. What will the organizers of the 2022 Virtual Grand Prix surprise?
Virtual Le Mans: How it started
Generally speaking, the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual Grand Prix was intended to be an “online” replacement for a real race at the Circuit de La Sarthe. Le Mans racing is a major historical event. The refusal to host the race due to pandemic restrictions meant losing touch with motorsport. It was not about the drivers and the competition between the teams, but about the magic of La Sarthe tradition. Thus, Le Mans Virtual race debuted in 2020. It was a small experiment that nobody had hoped for, but it was a great success, reaching over 14.2 million spectators!
The real race – 24 Hours of Le Mans was held in August 2021. But since 2020, the Virtual Grand Prix has become a series. As of 25 September 2021, the esports Championship has been organized by Motorsport Games in collaboration with the organizers of the FIA WEC. In 2021, there were five races covering Monza, Spa-Francorchamps, Nurburgring, Sebring. The race at the Circuit de la Sarthe culminates in the full 24-hour event on 15-16 January 2022.
How will the 2022 Le Mans Virtual delight racing fans?
The rules for the 24 Hours of Le Mans are the same and very similar to real events. The minimum driving experience per driver in the race is 4 hours 240 minutes, the maximum is 7 hours 420 minutes and may not drive more than 3 hours within a period of 5 hours. Each team must have at least 2 professional drivers with an international FIA license or equivalent! And that’s the main point that gets fans from all over the world to watch the Virtual Le Mans Race. Just look at the star drivers on the entry list.
Le Mans 2022 Virtual Race – which of the stars will take part?
The youngest ever F1 World Champion Max Verstappen is the star, but not the last. Former F1 star Juan Pablo Montoya and his son Sebastian Montoya will all compete in the world’s biggest virtual endurance race. Legendary Spanish two-time Formula 1 champion Fernando Alonso will also captain his Alpine Esports team. INDYCAR champion Alex Palou will also take part in Virtual Race in 2021. The female W-Series is led by the Dutch racing driver Beitske Visser. Former Williams F1 junior driver and Formula E star Oliver Rowland, Formula E’s Sergio Sette Camara, Indy 500 driver Sage Karam, Bent Viscaal, Felipe Drugovich and Victor Martins are among the single-seater stars on the list.
2022 Le Mans Virtual Race – Where to see it?
The Virtual Race will begin on Saturday 15 January 2022 at 05: 00 PT / 08: 00 ET / 13: 00 GMT / 14: 00 CET and will be streamed live on the official Traxion.GG, YouTube, Facebook and Twitch channels.
Watching and comparing the driving experience of professional iracers and current F1 drivers and IndyCar drivers in real time is almost what we would never see. Motorsport games offer such opportunities. That’s the case! Will the Le Mans virtual race surpass the record of 14.2 million spectators? That’s a question we’ll soon find the answer to!