The Top 15 female sim racers across the US, Canada and Europe that have qualified on top of the charts for the Screen to Speed by Pennzoil event on the iRacing platform are heading to Las Vegas on 4th March for the live, in-person finale.
They’ll be going up against each other for a chance at winning $15,000, a Next Level Racing simulation rig, and the opportunity to drive a Kelly-Moss Porsche race car in a Speed Vegas test drive alongside Kelly-Moss driver and former W Series competitor Sabré Cook.
The event will be streamed live on 4th March at 5:00 p.m. PST, which is Las Vegas local time, on Init Esports’ Twitch and YouTube channels, as well as on the ESTV service. Speaking of Twitch, the show will be pinned on the front page of the Twitch website
TOP DRIVERS ON LEADERBOARD HEADING TO LAS VEGAS
After weeks of Time Attack laps were put down on the Screen to Speed leaderboards at the Las Vegas infield road course, the Top 15 were determined and have been invited to compete live at the finale which will happen at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
|POSITION||COUNTRY||DRIVER NAME||QUAL TIME|
|1||GB||Martina Ward||46.738 seconds|
|2||GB||Olivia Hayward||47.864 seconds|
|3||IE||Saoirse Fitzpatrick||47.866 seconds|
|4||US||Emily Howe||47.928 seconds|
|5||GB||Roxie Gibson||48.351 seconds|
|6||US||Kristina Ryan||48.367 seconds|
|7||CA||Athena Leclerc||48.426 seconds|
|8||GB||Callie Baigent||48.445 seconds|
|9||NL||Esmeralda Naald||48.469 seconds|
|10||US||Jewel Wolfe||48.492 seconds|
|11||CA||Aloo Gobi||48.516 seconds|
|12||US||Eris Aphelion||48.519 seconds|
|13||US||Garnet Collins||48.543 seconds|
|14||US||Ruby Acosta||48.563 seconds|
|15||GB||Hamish Easner||48.573 seconds|
NEXT LEVEL RACING, FORD AND MORE SIGNED ON AS PARTNERS
With the in-person event, two big names in automotive and sim racing have signed on as partners to present the Screen to Speed by Pennzoil event.
They’re going to need sim racing rigs to compete live in front the NASCAR fans at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, so Next Level Racing has signed on to provide the cockpits for the participants to compete with at the track. Not only that, but the winner will also take home a Next Level Racing simulator.
While nobody will be walking away with a new Ford vehicle, the company has also signed on as a presenting sponsor alongside the previously announced Pennzoil brand, two names synonymous with one another. Pennzoil will sponsor Team Penske that weekend, one of the top Ford programs in NASCAR.
While iRacing’s three NASCAR manufacturers need no Balance of Performance tweaking, all of the Screen to Speed drivers will compete in the NASCAR Ford Mustang NEXT Gen racecar as a part of the event.
A multi-year program for discovering female talent from esports and gaming
If all things go well, this could be the start of something big for women in sim racing. The program is designed to be a multi-year program, this first go in Las Vegas in 2023 is just the first. Init Esports founder Stefy Bau and Kellymoss Inc. co-owner Victoria Thomas are the two minds behind the whole program.
Bau told Traxion.GG’s own Crystal Scour as the Screen to Speed competition was ramping up that “the idea started as a way to meet the young demographic where they are (online) and show them the different doors into the motorsports industry.”
Bau continued that “as a former professional racer, I have experienced first-hand the difficulties of getting into motorsports as a female. We want to change that and inspire everyone to go for their dreams.”
Sabré Cook is one of the Kelly-Moss Road and Race drivers this year, and is the driver who the winner of this year’s contest will get to drive beside in the test drive.
I’ve actually spoken to Cook before, back in 2020 when the W Series was shut down amongst the rest of the motorsports world and organizers had to come up with a virtual way to keep drivers racing.
She was relatively new to the sim racing sphere back then, as were many real-world drivers, but here we are, less than three years later, and sim racing has now become an avenue for more prospective drivers.
In the case of this Screen to Speed by Pennzoil program, it’s now a means for more women to get their names recognized in the real-world paddocks.