George Russell and Jarno Opmeer lead teams at iRacing Esports Sim Challenge

Crystal Scuor
Formula 1 driver George Russell and F1 Esports Champion Jarno Opmeer coach teams at the iRacing Esports Sim Challenge, hosted by IWC Schaffhausen.
LionHeart, Jarno Opmeer, Emma Walsh and Harry Pinero at the iRacing Esports Sim Challenge in London

George Russell may be taking a much-needed rest and relaxation from real-world racing, but he continues to win off the track with an exciting victory at the inaugural iRacing Esports Sim Challenge.

This time; however, he wasn’t in the driver’s seat.

Instead, the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula 1 star took on a similar role to his boss, Toto Wolff, by coaching a squad of sim racers to a championship earlier this month at the event in London.

Team Russell took on fellow Mercedes Esports teammate, two-time F1 Esports Series Pro champion, Jarno Opmeer – who also guided a group of drivers.

The challenge featured both teams racing against each other virtually around Silverstone. Ultimately, Team Russell—consisting of Scott Tuffey, Dominic Roberts, Lewis Bickers and Drew McDevitt—emerged as the champions.

Opmeer and Walsh at IWC's iRacing Esports Sim Challenge in London
Opmeer and Walsh attending IWC’s iRacing Esports Sim Challenge at Battersea Power Station boutique

The winners will be invited to take part in a Mercedes-AMG F1 factory tour, which includes a simulator experience in Brackley.

Opmeer, alongside content creator Emma Walsh, presenter and content creator Harry Pinero, and artist and poet LionHeart were in attendance, while Russell supported his team remotely with tips and tricks throughout the race. The in-person event was also live-streamed via Twitch.

Russell testing out the same simulators used by his team at the event
Russell testing out the same simulators used by his team at the event

Swiss luxury watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen partnered with the F1 and Esports team to create the event which also celebrated a new IWC boutique at Battersea Power Station.

The line between real-world and virtual racing continues to blend harmoniously. Big-name brands recognizing the value of esports is huge for the continued growth within the motorsport industry.

Walsh admiring the leaderboard at IWC Schaffhausen in London

It’s a boom that seemingly gains more traction with each new event and the support of real-world drivers and star-studded sim champions, like George Russell and Jarno Opmeer. Congrats to Team Russell on the victory.

Via IWC Schaffhausen

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