British firm Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE have today announced their drivers for the first Virtual Le Mans 24 Hours in its first venture into the sim racing world in a works capacity.
The cars will run in the familiar liveries and numbers that the team use in the FIA World Endurance Championship and will field three Aston Martin Vantage’s in the GTE class.
In the number 95 car, dubbed “The Dane Train”, is the Danish duo of Nicki Thiim (who is more than handy in a sim) and Lasse Sørensen – the brother of regular team mate Marco. Completing the four-man lineup is Richard Westbrook, who will drive the car for real later in the year, and sim-racing regular Manuel Biancolila.
The number 97 car has a distinct British feel with the trio of Alex Lynn, Harry Tincknell and Charlie Eastwood who are all more than capable in a sim and they’ll be joined by Tiziano Brioni who has competed in F1 esports in the past.
The third car AMR will be entering features multiple real-life Le Mans victories with three-time winner Darren Turner spearheading the team alongside 2017’s dramatic winner Jonny Adam and Ross Gunn. And to support this powerhouse trio will be the 2018 rFactor Endurance Champion Guiseppe De Fuoco.
The 98 car which they will be piloting will have the added boost of being driven from Turner’s own full-spec Base Performance motion GT simulator.
Aston Martin Racing President David King said: “I think all of us, given the chance, would love to be back at La Sarthe on the middle weekend of June contesting the most famous endurance race of them all, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. But under the current the circumstances, this is a great alternative and an excellent opportunity for us to continue to grow our esports programme and build our understanding ofthis landscape.
“The ACO, FIA WEC and Motorsport Games have done a fantastic job to put this race together in such a short period of time, and we’re looking forward to doing battle with our oldest GT rivals in this new arena for the sport.”
Also in the race will be stars from every area of motorsport including a superstar team for Team Redline in LMP2 with F1 stars Max Verstappen and Lando Norris joining Atze Kerkhof and five-time iRacing World Champion Greger Huttu.
The race will take place at the same time the real-life race was due to be held on June 13-14th with the race beginning at 1400 BST.