Mattias Adielsson won the first World Rallycross Esports Invitational, beating a field of sim racing and real world motorsport superstars.
The Esports event, arranged to occur in place of the postponed World RX season opener this weekend, was contested on Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya’s rallycross course on the Dirt Rally 2.0 game.
Adielsson, a real world rally driver but also an accomplished sim racer, led the five-car, six-lap final from start to finish, but left it late to joker which left him under pressure from sim racers Lukáš Matěja and Killian Dall’olmo – the Dirt Rally 2.0 rallycross world champion – in the closing stages of the race.
When Adielsson finally took the longer route on lap five, his nearest rivals having done so on the opening lap, he emerged side-by side with Matěja. Adielsson managed to just keep in front, with Dall’olmo joining the pair.
Dall’olmo got by Matěja on the final lap, with Adielsson eking out a one second lead by the end of the race.
Carrying the flag for the real world rallycross stars, Kevin Abbring and Timmy Hansen finished fourth and fifth respectively.
Hansen, the only rallycross driver to win a qualifying round and a semi-final, was shuffled back by the Esports drivers at the start of the final, leaving him on the back foot, while Abbring managed to escape through the same scuffle.
By the end of the third lap both Hansen and Abbring had jokered, and were battling wheel-to-wheel on track. Contact on the dirt led to Hansen stopping momentarily, handing the position to Abbring.
Outside of the final, Kevin Hansen missed out on advancing from the first semi-final after contact; while a last lap, last corner pass on Andreas Bakkerud by Adielsson prevented him from advancing to the main event as well.