ESPORTS: Stacked Field in the Mobileye GT World Challenge America Esport Championship Prepare for Season Kick-Off at Laguna Seca

ESPORTS: Stacked Field in the Mobileye GT World Challenge America Esport Championship Prepare for Season Kick-Off at Laguna Seca
  • 46-car field set for opening round of the American Esports season at Laguna Seca
  • 22-car Pro class field with wide array of manufacturers and talent
  • 24-car Silver class category gearing up for thrilling and competitive season
  • Total prize of €6,000 on offer

The beginning of the 2023 Mobileye GT World Challenge America Esport Championship is set to commence on Saturday, May 6th at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. A total of 46 talented Assetto Corsa Competizione players will take on the virtual 11-turn, 2.238 mile circuit and fight for the opportunity to take home the victory and the cash prize. 

The drivers will be divided between the Pro Class and the Silver Class, with 22 cars in the former and 24 in the latter. There is a total of €6,000 on the line, with a prize of €4,000 for those in the Pro category, and the remaining €2,000 in the Silver. Both classes are shaping up to be extremely competitive, and Laguna Seca serves as the perfect setting to kick off the action. 

The Mobileye GTWC Esports America Sprint Series will take place across five rounds, with the Monterey-based track serving as the season opener. The following event will be held at Circuit of the Americas, then a trip across the pond at the historic Silverstone track in Great Britain, with Watkins Glen and Indianapolis Motor Speedway making up the final two rounds. The schedule was created with an approach that replicates the flow of a real-world Fanatec GT World Challenge America Powered by AWS race weekend. 

Pro class

The Pro class is defined as the top Drivers & Teams within the Esports community

and Assetto Corsa Competizione. Often composed of OEM-nominated drivers and teams, these are some of the best the world of sim racing has to offer. This year, the Pro class is stacked with a selection of 22 highly skilled drivers, all of which will be fighting tooth and nail for their shot at glory. 

Acura will be accounting for the most entries with the likes of Josh Staffin, Cardin Lu, Josh McKean, Karl Wittmer, and Nicolas Alvarado, all of whom will be representing HPD JAS Pro America in a Acura NSX GT3 Evo. Porsche will also be well represented, with 4 drivers utilizing the Porsche 992 GT3 R this season, including Ed Kerstetter (SOP Esports Racing), Fidel Moreira (Williams Esports), Michael Kundakcioglu (FFS Racing), and Angel Inostroza (YAS Heat Esports). 

While certain teams have elected to keep all their driver pairings in the same machinery, others have opted to divide and conquer when it comes to manufacturers. Asetek SimSports Visceral and Williams Esports Academy will have Vinny Oliveira and Daniel De Oliveira fielding the No. 72 and No. 33 Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3, whereas Renan Negrini and Phelipe Roberto will be competing in the No. 2 and No. 44 Audi R8 LMS Evo II Williams. Renato Dornelles (Race Anywhere Simsport) will also be representing the British manufacturer in the No. 3 car, and Igor De Oliveira Rodrigues (Williams Esports) representing the German automotive brand on board the No. 124 machine. 

Cameron Martineau and race-winner Chris Severt will both be competing in the No. 38 and No. 39 BMW M4 GT3 M4 GT3 on behalf of STR Esports, the sim racing arm of Samantha Tan Racing in Fanatec GT World Challenge America. 

Bentley, McLaren, and Lamborghini will each have one entry in the field, with Gabriel Felipe manning the No. 63 Bentley Continental GT3 2018 for Oak Racing Team Esports. Aloo Gobi and Griphax Engineering have selected the No. 20 McLaren 720S GT3 as their machine of choice. Jyeed Hutchinson will be taking on the lone No. 26 Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo2 with the support of Automobili Lamborghini Esport Team. 

The grid would not feel complete without the presence of Ferrari, with Philippe Simard (FFS Racing) and Skyler Loverink (Brix Racing) hopping in the No. 56 and No. 520 Ferrari 296 GT3 steeds. 

Silver class

The Silver class is defined as some of the top Drivers & Teams that are either yet to

break out into Pro talent or are recognised as some of the fastest drivers and teams at a community level and aim to compete with the very best in sim racing. The class will see 24 drivers who will all be aiming for the same goal; crossing the finish line first. 

Aston Martin will be represented by two contenders at the helm of an Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT3 with Arnage Competition; Lucas and Leandro Werle. 

British manufacturers will be well represented with Adrian Bourdon who will be driving the No. 8 Bentley Continental GT3 2018 for SOP Esports Racing. Canadian driver Pierre-Olivier Cloutier will be commanding the No. 36 McLaren 720S GT3 for EGT Motorsports. EGT Canada will also field an Audi R8 LMS Evo II with Marc-Antoine Landry. 

HPD JAS Pro America will also have a presence in the Silver Class with Hamza Gulzar who will race aboard the Acura NSX GT3 Evo. Four other Acura NSX GT3 Evos will also be competing with Antonio Azpiri in the No. 69 Azpiri Racing, Kenneth Portis II with Roto Grip Racing on the No. 84 Honda, Ayrton Stuffano in the No.98 AFRT machine, and Ricardo Rivera commanding the No. 787 Puerto Rico eRacing Club challenger. 

Porsche is a popular manufacturer as seven teams elected to field a Porsche 992 GT3 R. Nicholas DeSantis will represent ND Motorsports in the No. 12 Porsche 992 GT3, while Timothy Flammger will represent Alpha Simsport. Sim Racing Alliance will take to the track with Koapono Patrick, while co-supporting Diego Paul Fimbres Casas who will represent Pillard Racing / Sim Racing Alliance. 

Zach Doran (Team Schumiskins), Jordan Johnson (Puresims esports) and Hayden Harter (TSE Racing - Northstar) complete Porsche’s roster in the Silver Class. 

Another popular machine in the Silver Class is the Ferrari 296 GT3. Cody Sheratt will be representing the prancing horse with Genisus Esports, and Joseph Kostovich will command the No. 949 Nine 4 Nine Racing car. 

Asetek Simsports Visceral will be represented by Mérick Lévêque and Estefano Barrera on their No. 88 and No. 369 Ferrari 296 GT3. Jonathan Clifford will also represent an Italian manufacturer, as he will be aboard the virtual Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo2 with Alpha Sim Sport. 

Argenis Riera will command the No. 43 Geekz Energy Simracing BMW M4 GT3 during the hour-long season opening this Saturday. 

The race day action will begin with two practice sessions at 13:30 ET and 14:15 ET, followed immediately by qualifying at 14:35 and the race taking place at 15:00. The race will be streamed live via the SRO Motorsports Twitch channel and GT World YouTube channel.

Reports and results will be published on the SRO Esports website.