24 Hours of Le Mans to go virtual for the first time in history
18 May 2020
While the 88th edition of 24 Hours of Le Mans have been postponed to September 19/20, professional racing drivers and eSports specialists will compete on simulators on June 13/14 in the biggest eSports endurance race ever organized, the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual which will take place on the event’s original dates using rFactor 2 gaming platform.
The 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual, organized by the ACO (Automobile Club de l’Ouest), FIA WEC and Motorsport Games, will open a new era in sim racing. For the first time, four-driver teams composed of a combination of at least two professional racing drivers and a maximum of two eSports champions will challenge each other on the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans circuit, for 24 hours. The competition, which will involve no more than 50 LMP2 and GTE cars, will be broadcasted live on TV across the globe. Race commentators and pit reporters will be live from a TV studio in Paris and VIP guests will visit them during the race.
Strategy will be at the heart of the race that will take place in variable weather conditions with dynamic day and night racing like in real-world, with refueling and tyre changes being essential criteria; compulsory drivers’ change with minimum driving time over the entire event of four hours and maximum of seven hours for each driver.
“This first edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual opens a new chapter for our discipline. Current circumstances meant that the 88th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans will take place on September 19/20 2020. However, on June 13/14, the initial date of our event, there will be a unique event augmenting endurance racing and its values: the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual, with professional drivers and specialist eSports gaming racing together. For us, the organizers, for our competitors, our partner and our fans, we are now impatiently waiting for the start of this unique race on June 3 at 3 P.M.”, said Pierre Fillon, President of Automobile Club de l’Ouest. “Since Le Mans eSports Series was launched two years ago, it’s been very satisfying to see it double in size and visibility year on year. That highlighted to us the huge appetite among the eSports community for endurance racing and access to the jewel of the crown of the discipline, the 24 Hours of Le Mans” added Gérard Neveu, CEO FIA WEC.