British sim racers Sebastian Job of Oracle Red Bull Racing Esports and Charlie Collins of the VRS team were celebrated as the winners of round 8 of the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup at the Nürburgring.
Job won the three-lap sprint race on the 25.94 kilometer combination of the Grand Prix circuit and the Nordschleife. In the four-lap feature race, Collins took first place in his virtual version of the 375 kW (510 hp) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. Portuguese Diogo Pinto, who drove for the Porsche24 Team Redline team, extended his lead in the series by finishing second and third.
The track layout used for the famous 24-hour race at the Nürburgring is considered one of the biggest challenges in the virtual motorsport world. With more than 70 turns, drivers respectfully refer to the Nordschleife as the “Green Hell”. Often the decision comes in the very last lap, at the end of the almost 2.7 kilometer long “Döttinger Höhe” straight. Those who catch the best slipstream here are definitely faster than their rivals.
And accordingly, the two races of round eight of the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup provided excitement in the final sprint. Diogo Pinto turned the fastest qualifying lap and started the sprint race from pole position. Entering the last corner on the straight “Döttinger Höhe” the Portuguese driver was still in the lead. However, the front splitter of his Porsche 911 GT3 Cup was slightly damaged by the curbs, causing him to slow down. Sebastian Job seized his chance: he shot out of his slipstream, overtaking Pinto and taking the win for Portuguese and Spaniard Alejandro Sánchez of the SDK Gaming team.
For the feature race, the top eight of the sprint event were on the grid in reverse order. Pinto’s team-mate Maximilian Benecke started from pole position, but the German only enjoyed a brief moment of glory. With a clever slipstream maneuver on the “Döttinger Höhe” and in the “Kesselchen” passage, Australian Dayne Warren (Coanda) and Briton Kevin Ellis Jr. (Apex Racing Team) take turns leading. Sebastian Job, the winner of the sprint race, was entangled in a collision shortly after the start and had to retire.
When the front runners came up the “Döttinger Höhe” straight for the last time, there were still six drivers in the race for the trophy. Sometimes four Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars drove wheel to wheel towards the braking zone. Shortly before that, Ellis Jr. and Warren, however, collided, causing both cars to spin. Charlie Collins took advantage of this, with the British sim racer crossing the finish line first and eventually taking victory in the feature race for his VRS team just 0.128 seconds ahead of Maximilian Benecke.
Pinto collected valuable championship points with third place. After eight of the ten laps, the Portuguese driver leads the general classification of the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup, ahead of Kevin Ellis Jr. and Sebastian Job.
Tyson Meier and Marco Bischoff win turbulent All-Star races
Content creators from the Esports scene also competed in two races at the Nürburgring as part of the PESC support program. For this event, the All-Stars drove the virtual version of the 911 GT3 R. In the one-lap qualifying session, Casey Kirwan took pole position for the sprint.
The American was also the fastest in the sprint race and was almost three seconds ahead of his biggest pursuers in the first of three laps. However, after Kirwan’s accident towards the end of the second round, his compatriot Tyson “Quirkitized” Meier and Germany’s Marco “MabixTV” Bischoff closed the gap. On the final lap, Meier overtook the leader and defended first place to the finish. After three laps, Bischoff took the checkered flag with Kirwan close behind.
IndyCar legend and Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan started the feature race from pole position. But the Brazilian, who was eliminated after a spin in the sprint, lost all chances of a top result when he left the track on the first lap. Although they started from the back of the pack, Meier, Kirwan and Bischoff were back in the lead after the first of three laps. The trio changed positions several times and eventually the decision fell in a slipstream duel in the “Döttinger Höhe” just before the finish. Kirwin and Meier managed to squeeze past Bischoff, but collided in the braking zone at the end of the straight and spun off the track. Bischoff was able to avoid the two spinning Porsche 911 GT3 R to secure the victory. Kirwan took second place ahead of Meier, who extended his lead in the All-Stars with this result.
Preview round 9: from one 24-hour racetrack to another
In two weeks, the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup will return to the finish line on another circuit known for its 24-hour races: the ninth and penultimate race of the season will take place on 21 May 2022 at Le Mans at France’s Circuit des 24 Heures . With its relatively long straights and challenging curve combinations, the 13.63 kilometer course offers ideal conditions for taking on the racing action with the virtual version of the approx. 375 kW (510 hp) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
Last year, eventual champion Joshua Rogers of the VRS squad won both the sprint and feature race at Le Mans. The Australian is not participating in the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup this year.
Content creators from the esports racing world will once again compete in two All-Star races at Le Mans. The All-Star livestream will begin at 7:30 PM (CEST) with the qualifying session in the virtual Porsche 911 GT3 R. The two influencer races will be green-lighted at around 7:30 PM and 7:45 PM respectively. The racing action of the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup starts around 9.15pm.
Nürburgring-Nordschleife, sprint race
1. Sebastian Job (GB/Oracle Red Bull Racing Esports)
2. Diogo C. Pinto (P/Porsche24 Team Redline)
3. Alejandro Sánchez (E/SDK Gaming)
4. Zac Campbell (USA/VRS)
5. Charlie Collins (GB/VRS)
Nürburgring-Nordschleife, feature race
1. Charlie Collins (GB/VRS)
2. Maximilian Benecke (D/Porsche24 Team Redline)
3. Diogo C. Pinto (P/Team Redline)
4. Cooper Webster (AUS/Oracle Red Bull Racing Esports)
5. Kevin Ellis jr. (GB/Apex Racing Team)
Points’ standings after 8 of 10 championship rounds
1. Diogo C. Pinto (P/Team Redline), 443 points
2. Kevin Ellis jr (GB/Apex Racing Team), 407 points
3. Zac Campbell (USA/VRS), 380 points
4. Sebastian Job (GB/Oracle Red Bull Racing Esports), 379 point