Reigning F1 world champion Max Verstappen has joined next weekend’s virtual Le Mans 24 Hours with Team Redline.
The popular online racing event has gained a lot of traction in recent years. A mix of the top real-life and virtual racers join the event to duke it out. The 2022 edition will begin on 15 January at 13:00 UK time, and will be steamed across various social media and eSports platforms.
The Dutchman will team up with Arrow McLaren SP IndyCar charger Felix Rosenqvist and sim racers Max Benecke and Atze Kerkhof. The four drivers will race Team Redline’s Oreca 07 in the LMP category.
The team’s second entry will feature veterans Oliver Rowland and Felipe Drugovich and their sim counterparts Jeffrey Rietveld and Michael Schmidl.
“It keeps me just ready to go,” the Red Bull driver said, as quoted by f1i.com.
“I’m not racing an F1 car on the simulator, it’s like GT cars. But it’s also a different technique of driving, so I just keep testing myself.”
The virtual real deal
“These sim drivers, they’re so quick,” Verstappen continued.
“It’s very interesting to see them drive because they have no real experience of a car. But somehow when you look at how they’re braking, how they control it, it is how it should be.
“So it’s very interesting for me to then compare myself to them because they are naturally quick on the sim and I’m naturally quick in real life. For me that’s’ another motivation because I know I’m confident that when I jump into a real car I’ll be quick.
“But on the simulator these guys are the benchmark and I have to push myself to that limit. So I like to push myself and test myself to learn from them, which I think also helps me in real life,” he concluded.