Verstappen, Norris collide in Redline ‘Real Racers’ event
Esports | March 23rd, 2020
Formula 1 stars Max Verstappen and Lando Norris collided while battling for the lead in the opening round of Team Redline’s new sim racing series for real-life racing drivers.
Sim racing giants Team Redline launched a brand-new series, Real Racers Never Quit, which brings together over 40 professional racing drivers with two-time Indy500 winner Juan Pablo Montoya among the line-up.
The opening round tasked the drivers with racing the European Formula 3 cars on iRacing around the virtual Spa circuit across two 10-lap races. Verstappen dominated the opening race after jumping from third on the grid into the race lead on the opening lap.
Formula Renault Eurocup race winner Lorenzo Colombo stayed within a second of Verstappen for the majority of the race but the polesitter was unable to find a way past the Dutchman.
2012 Euro F3 champion Daniel Juncadella used his real-life knowledge of the car to complete the podium places. Norris started the race fourth but lost a heap of positions with a poor getaway off the line. He recovered to finish in sixth place.
He lined up second on the grid for race two alongside polesitter Verstappen. The duo enjoyed a race-long battle, swapping the lead on multiple occasions.
Their battle reached its peak on the penultimate lap, as 2019 ADAC GT Masters champion Kelvin van der Linde made it a three-way fight down to Les Combes.
Van der Linde yielded first while Verstappen attempted an audacious move around the outside of Norris, only to run wide on the exit and spin. His spinning car collected Norris, leaving van der Linde clear to take the race lead and ultimately the race win.
Verstappen and Norris re-joined the circuit, still in the top five. However, Verstappen then collided with BMW factory driver Nicky Catsburg at the final chicane on the final lap.
This allowed Norris to pass both of them and take home fourth place behind BMW DTM driver Philipp Eng and ex-Euro F3 driver Mikkel Jensen in second and third respectively.
Verstappen finished fifth ahead of Formula E race winner Antonio Felix da Costa and 2012 DTM champion Bruno Spengler.
Montoya suffered a miserable first round. He was rolled over at Les Combes after a collision with 2013 DTM champion Mike Rockenfeller in the first race.