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23 January 2019

Sim racer beats former F1 driver on the track

By Mitchell TulkMitchell Tulk

A lot of people might be calling bull, but Italian eSports racer, Enzo Bonito has managed to do the seemingly impossible.

At this year’s Race Of Champions (ROC) in Mexico City, Bonito raced against ex-F1 driver Lucas di Grassi and beat him. This wasn't on a simulator either.

In the eSports world, Bonito is highly regarded having won the Porsche e Carrera Cup and the eRace Of Champions, which scored him a seat to compete in the real ROC.

Di Grassi had a short Formula 1 stint, driving for Virgin Racing in 2010, but regardless he is a skilled driver, finishing second in the 2016 World Endurance Championship (WEC) and winning the 2016/17 Formula E championship.

To keep things even, both racers were behind the wheel of a Vuhl 05 ROC Edition with a Ford-sourced 2.3-litre turbo four-cylinder engine.

The Vuhul 05 has a power to weight ratio that'll scare most supercars. The Vuhul 05 has a power to weight ratio that'll scare most supercars.

Weighing 695kg and making 268kW, the lightweight sports car can accelerate from 0-100km/h in three seconds, while its top speed is 275km/h.

Over a two-lap dash, both drivers were separated by 0.6690 of a second with Bonito clawing back 1.7 seconds to take the win.

The following day, the sim racer would go on to beat Indy 500 winner, Ryan Hunter-Reay.

Can a race simulator create a great driver out of anyone? Let us know in the comments.