Epps Stars As Williams Wins Top Prize In Grand Final At Spa

The grand final of the Pro Racing Simulators Esports Challenge with Track Obsession was held at Spa Francorchamps, which saw 41 cars out on track. 

22 pro drivers took on the sim racers, who had qualified from the previous three rounds. With drivers from BTCC, British GT, Mini Challenge, VLN and single seaters it was sure to be an action-packed evening of racing. 

Photo Credit: David Pittard

Heat one saw serial race winner Luke Bennett set off from pole and into a healthy lead. Behind it was front running sim racers from the series David Williams and Jack McIntyre fighting it out for second. McIntyre in his Ferrari 488 GTE moved ahead of Williams in his Porsche 911 RSR as he ran wide. This move turned out to be for the lead as Bennett hit trouble on lap 2 and headed to the pit lane. The pro drivers moved up the order with David Pittard’s BMW M8 GTE fighting for second place with Williams bringing Jamie Rushworth with him. A spin for Pittard at the bus stop chicane put an end to his challenge and he ended up finishing 13th. McIntyre took his first win of the series with the top pro driver being Mike Epps in 5th. 

McIntyre fighting with Williams

Josh Malin made a great start from pole in Heat 2, as the second heat featured more pro drivers at the sharp end than the previous one. Up the Kemmel straight Stuart McPhaden was fighting towards the front of the pack when he was sent spinning down the order, he fought his way back to eighth by the chequered flag. The pros were taking the fight to each other up front with Malin in his Porsche 911 RSR and Harrison Scott in the Ferrari 488 GTE. Scott gained a great slip stream through Eau Rouge and onto the Kemmel straight to take the lead. Behind Ben Tuck was closing in on the pair in his BMW M8 GTE, Malin and Scott would swap positions, but it was another Ferrari victory in the hands of Scott with Malin penalised for track limits dropping him to 17th. The BTCC drivers were swapping places as Daniel Rowbottom made a move around the outside of 2020 rookie James ‘Jiggy’ Gornall at the Bus Stop chicane. The drama didn’t end there for Jiggy as Scott Malvern tapped the BMW of Jiggy through Blanchimont sending him crashing into the concrete wall, he still managed to limp across the line in 13th. Out of the sim racers it was Oulton Park final race winner Rob Baker who was the highest finisher in fourth. 

41 cars took to the grid for the Grand Final. The partial reverse grid from the two heats, meant Ben Sharpe was on pole with pro racer Epps alongside. The 41 GT cars piled into La Source with Epps making the better start, all cars were safely through the tight hairpin. The slipstream effect meant it was 4-wide on the Kemmel straight with Rob Baker aiming to make a move, however he was tagged by Stuart McPhaden and as his car rolled he was taken out of contention. The action was found up front as Harrison Scott closed in on Epps for the lead, the pair battled and had a close fight throughout the 30-minute race. Rushworth and Williams passed Sharpe as he ran wide in the battle for third. Williams closed by several tenths a lap to the lead trio to make it a four-way fight. He made his move on Rushworth at La Source, who spun on the exit and dropped him down the order. He eventually finished ninth. Williams’ pace didn’t slow, and he passed Scott with a great move around the outside at Les Combes. While chasing down Epps, Williams tried a move at the same corner but this time it didn’t pay off causing him to spin allowing Scott back through. Scott then tried the same move on the final lap against Epps but had to cut across the grass which then allowed Williams back through to finish second. Epps taking another victory in his successful Esports career. 

Drama for Rob Baker as the pack head down the Kemmel Straight

The results from the evenings racing meant that David Williams was crowned the winner of the eSports competition with Jack McIntyre second thanks to his great drive in the final up to fourth and third went the way of Jamie Rushworth. All three winning great prizes as part of the series. 

Race Results: