Esports Racer Beats Two Racing Champions in Real-World Races

Esports Racer Beats Two Racing Champions in Real-World Races

Esports Racer Beats Two Racing Champions in Real-World Races

Can skills gains though video games translate to real-world situations? While in most cases the answer is no, the world of racing seems to be a notable exception, with esports racing champions transitioning over to real-world vehicles with great success. 

Last week, 23-year-old Enzo Bonito showcased his racing prowess at the Foro Sol Stadium, challenging top tier racers at the “Race of Champions” (ROC) event, which pits top-tier drivers from all motorsport disciplines in head-to-head matches. Starting in 2018, the event began to allow esports racers to enter the competition, accepting the skills that can be developed within racing sims as legitimate in real-life racing scenarios. 

Now, this doesn’t mean your skills with a gamepad or keyboard will translate to real-world vehicles, but it does mean that racers using physical steering wheels, pedals and other high-end simulation equipment can hone their racing skills in a way that can be transferred to real-world motorsports. This makes “sim racing”/”virtual motorsports” a new potential starting point for professional drivers. 

While driving the same vehicle, a Vuhl 05 ROC Edition 2019, Enzo Bonito managed to beat Lucas di Grassi, a former F1 (now FE) driver, in a real-world race, surprising the commentators at the ROC Nations Cup. A video showcasing the race is available to view below. 

The following day, Enzo Bonito also managed to best Ryan Hunter-Reay, a three-time Indy 500 winner, in another 1-on-1 match, proving that his win against Lucas di Grassi was no fluke. 

Enzo Benito’s performance at the ROC Nations Cup proves that the world of racing esports can produce real-world champions, opening the world of racing to a wider number of drivers while further legitimising the world of esports. In the case of Bonito, all those hours of gaming were worth it. 

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