- 47 Esport Entries Kick Off 2022 Mobileye GT World Challenge America Esports Season
- Two-time Sprint Champion Michael Kundakcioglu Returns to Defend Title
- Round 1 Entry List | Timetable
The 2022 Mobileye GT World Challenge America Esports championship roars to life this weekend with a one-hour Sprint race at virtual Zolder. 47 entries featuring some of the top Esports talent in North America are set to contest the race which will be held using Assetto Corsa Competizione, the official simulation of the Fanatec GT World Challenge powered by AWS. New for this season is the split Pro and Silver classes, with Pro featuring racers that qualified by virtue of their performance in previous races while Silver is home to North American sim racers who qualified in open competitions preceding the official rounds.
Headling the entry list is two-time and reigning Sprint series champion Michael Kundakcioglu. The Canadian, once again entered under the FFS Racing banner, will spearhead the assault from Porsche this season after representing McLaren and Mercedes-AMG in previous seasons. Joining him in the Porsche camp in the Pro ranks will be Luke Whitehead of GTWR R8G Academy and George Boothby from the YAS HEAT team. Three drivers qualified for the Silver division in Porsche 911 GT4 R machines, including Angel Inostroza of YAS HEAT, Sean Piner of Tritium Racing, and Madhaus Racing's Felix Tazvinwa-Hacker.
Perennial contenders Chris Severt (Team Severt Racing), William Hendrickson (Jean Alesi Esports Academy) and Killian Ryan-Meenan (FFS Racing) will represent Aston Martin in the Pro class at Zolder, with a pair of Astons entered in the Silver class for Renato Dornelles (Race Anywhere Simsport) and Josh McKean (DeltaSport).
The HPD JAS Pro America operation is back for another go with no fewer than four Acura NSX GT3 Evos on the Pro class entry list, headlined by real-world racer Karl Wittmer. Series stalwarts Cardin Lu, Zach Patterson, and Josh Staffin round out HPD's American Esports squad.
This weekend will mark the much-anticipated series debut for the virtual BMW M4 GT3, and it's proven to be a popular pick with eight entries split evenly between the Pro and Silver classes. 2021 series runner-up Philippe Simard figures to lead the charge in the Mobileye x FFS Racing entry, while real-world Fanatec GT World Challenge America powered by AWS teams Turner Motorsport and ST Racing make their first foray into the series' official Esports championship with driver Gregor Schill named to the No. 89 BMW Team BS+Turner machine and Cameron Martineau piloting the No. 38 for ST Racing eSports.
Elsewhere in the Pro class, Williams Esports will be represented by Phelipe Roberto. Renan Negrini (BagBlu Snow Schatten), Caique Oliveira (OAK Racing Team | Dynasty), Felix Ruppert (RennWelten eSports), and Alessandro Silva (BagBlu Snow Schatten) are all piloting Silver-class BMW M4s.
Two Lamborghini Huracan's for series returnee Cody Blanton (Race Anywhere Simsport) and Florian Dührkop (Unicorns of Love Sexy Edition) are in the Pro ranks and will be joined by a single entry in Silver for Jonathan Clifford (Clifford Racing), while rival Italian supercar maker Ferrari has two entries, both in the Pro category, for drivers Daniel de Oliveira (Williams Esports) and Vinny Oliveira (BagBlu Snow Schatten).
Six Bentley Continental GT3s, three in each class, appear on the entry list for Zolder. Williams Esports drivers Fidel Moreira and Igor Rodrigues, plus Race Anywhere Simsport driver Harry Spiers are listed in the Pro entries. Nicolas Gonzalez (Protocharge Simsport), Gabriel Felipe (Oak Racing Team Dyanasty), and Luke Southall (DeltaSport) qualified for the event in the Silver category.
Fellow British manufacturer McLaren boasts four entries but just returnee Sam Michaels in the the Pro class. Aloo Gobi, who has previous experience in the championship, along with Jack Noller and Jonathan Seville all qualified for the Silver class representing Griphax Engineering, Williams Esports Academy, and Pulse SimSport, respectively.