A virtual edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans featuring professional real-world and esports drivers will be held on the French enduro’s traditional mid-June weekend.
Following the postponement of this year’s Le Mans to September, event organizer the ACO has announced the introduction of an online alternative to run on June 13-14.
At least two real-world drivers will be required in each four-person lineup, while a maximum of two sim racing specialists will be permitted.
A total of 50 entries will take part, spread across two classes for LMP2 and GTE machinery.
The race will be held on rFactor 2, using the Oreca 07 Gibson, Porsche 911 RSR, Aston Martin Vantage GTE, Chevrolet Corvette C7.R and Ferrari 488 GTE.
“This first edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual opens a new chapter for our discipline,” said ACO President Pierre Fillon.
“Current circumstances mean that the 88th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans will take place on September 19-20, 2020.
“However, on June 13-14, the initial date of our event, there will be a unique event augmenting endurance racing and its values: the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual, with professional drivers and specialist esports gamers racing together.
“For us, the organizers, for our competitors, our partners and our fans, we are now impatiently waiting for the start of this unique race.”
Variable weather conditions and night time running will add strategy elements to the race, while teams will be permitted to configure their own car setups.
The event will be covered by English commentary and a ‘live TV studio’ presentation from Paris that will feature special guests.
Practice and qualifying sessions will be held in the days leading up to the main race, which is due to get underway at 3 p.m. CEST (9 a.m. EST) on Saturday, June 13.