Ferrari and Corvette Racing have become the final GT factory teams to confirm their driver lineups for the virtual 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance race on June 13-14.
Adding to the announcements already made by Aston Martin Racing and Porsche, the two remaining works outfits entered in the GTE class named their crews on Friday afternoon. There are still three independent GTE entries to be finalized.
Formula 1 star Charles Leclerc headlines the three-car Ferrari entry, which also features two of the marque’s FIA World Endurance Championship factory drivers.
Leclerc, who recently cameoed in a round of the SRO E-Sport GT Series, will share a Ferrari 488 GTE in the Le Mans event with Alfa Romeo F1 driver Antonio Giovinazzi, as well as esports racers Enzo Bonito and David Tonizza.
Bonito has accrued wins and records across multiple platforms including iRacing, Assetto Corsa and Gran Turismo, while Tonizza won the F1 esports championship last year.
The additions of Leclerc and Giovinazzi bring the number of current F1 drivers in the virtual 24 Hours of Le Mans up to five, adding to the already-confirmed Max Verstappen, Lando Norris and Pierre Gasly.
Ferrari WEC GTE-Pro ace Miguel Molina is slated to drive the No. 71 Ferrari car with GT3 racer and sim racing coach David Perel, plus Danilo Santoro and Jordy Zwiers.
The Italian manufacturer’s No. 51 lineup is led by WEC GTE-Am points leader Nicklas Nielsen, who will compete alongside Federico Leo, Kasper Stoltze and Amos Laurito.
Ferrari recently needed to conduct a shakedown of the 488 GTE’s rFactor 2 version, because the car has only recently been added to the sim racing platform that will be used in the virtual 24 Hours Le Mans.
“It is the first time that I have faced a digital shakedown,” said Molina, who completed the virtual test with fellow GTE-Pro driver James Calado.
“It was an unprecedented experience It’s still early to say whether the car is competitive or not; we will see it when we face our opponents even if the first indications are positive.
“The time that separates us from the race is very short but we will try to do everything possible to quickly find the virtual limits of the car.”
Taylor, Magnussen Among Corvette Drivers
The drivers of the two factory-entered Chevrolet Corvette C7.Rs have also been named.
IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship regular Jordan Taylor will team up with his Michelin Endurance Cup co-driver Nicky Catsburg and esports aces Laurin Heinrich and Alex Voss.
Catsburg is currently second in the IMSA-sanctioned iRacing Pro Invitational esports series for BMW, while Voss and Heinrich recently won the virtual Nürburgring 24 together with DTM driver Philipp Eng.
The other Corvette will be driven by Jan Magnussen, Tommy Milner, Dennis Lind and Alen Terzic.
Two-time IMSA GT Le Mans class champion Magnussen has achieved recent success in the Legends Trophy online series, which like the virtual Le Mans also uses rFactor 2.