Skip to main content

A sim racer just beat an ex-F1 driver in a real-life race

Di Grassi is greener.

It's been some time coming, but it's finally happened: a sim racer has beaten a pro racing driver, with Enzo Bonito getting the better of Lucas Di Grassi, the Brazilian formerly of F1 team Virgin Racing and Audi's WEC outfit, and currently a Formula E driver.

Bonito was taking part in this weekend's Race of Champions in Mexico, the annual get-together of stars from throughout the motorsport world which this year drew in the likes of F1 stars Pierre Gasly and Sebastien Vettel, Indy 500 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay and nine times Le Mans winner Tom Kristensen.

Bonito faced up against Di Grassi in a preliminary round, taking part in a head-to-head with the pair behind the wheel of Vuhl 05s, ending up ahead over the tight, winding course by over half a second.

It's some achievement, and part of the burgeoning creep of sim racing into real world motorsports. Sim racing has its first FIA-endorsed champion in the shape of Igor Fraga, the Brazilian also emerging successful at last week's McLaren Shadow Project finals - all while he pursues his own real-life racing career. Bonito, meanwhile, is part of the same Team Redline set-up that includes F1 star Max Verstappen - who's just as brilliant on the virtual track as he in the real world.

Read this next