Swiss-based Racing Unleashed are operating two LAN championships with huge prize money. This is why they are worth following!
With the conversation ongoing in the world of competitive sim racing regarding cheating, how do you remove that factor? Plenty of people have defaulted to having all major sim racing competitions run LAN-style, with drivers gathered in one neutral location.
That’s where Racing Unleashed come in, of which former Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn is currently the CEO. Founded in 2018, the brand began as a chain of sim racing social lounges mostly across Switzerland, with state of the art single-seater motion rigs, the same kind used in the F4 Racing Star competition.
There are lounges set up in the likes of Zürich, Cham, Kemptthal and also in Munich and Madrid.
But their other aim was to create a professional environment for people to be introduced to competitive sim racing. As a result, they host two sets of championships, the Challenger League and the Racer League.
In both series, all competitors are required to take part from their closest RU lounge. This eliminates the element of any driver potentially running external software to provide them with an advantage. This means there can be no questions asked about the legitimacy of a competitor.
Racing Unleashed: Gathering the Best
The season consists of ten rounds, with drivers racing on Assetto Corsa using Formula 1-style cars without DRS but instead with Push-to-Pass functionality. In the Challenger League, all competitors enter into hotlap time trials during a nine day phase in the leadup to the event.
The Racer League is the elite level competition where, if a driver does well in the Challenger League, they qualify for participation. In both championships, the 20 drivers competing across each league can earn considerable cash, per round and at season end.
Of the four seasons that have run so far, former F1 Esports and Team Redline driver Michal Šmídl has won three. The other was won by Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup race winner and Apex Racing Team driver Alejandro Sánchez.
In total, there is a prize pool of €200,000 up for grabs. The top ten in each of the individual events, and the top ten in the final championship standings, receiving money. In the Racer League, winning a round can net €3,500 with the finale paying out €7,000 and the champion winning a respectable €15,000.
For the Challenger League, the payouts are understandably lower, but still decent. A round winner earns €750 with the finale again doubling that to €1,500, and the champion €3,000 at the end of the season. The one who wins the Challenger League will receive automatic promotion to the Racer League in 2024.
Format and How To Follow
Rather interestingly, the way the grids are decided in RU events is unique. Instead of the simple by-the-numbers qualifying session, the drivers all line up in reverse championship order for a knock-out race. At first, no driver is eliminated for 2-3 laps but after that, the bottom two drivers are then eliminated at the end of every lap. The lap on which each driver was eliminated determines their row on the grid.
The main races themselves are typically 30 minutes in length, with the F1 points system awarding points to the top ten drivers. The season starts this week with the Challenger League races taking place on Fridays from 7pm to 9:30pm CEST, and Racer League events being held on Saturdays from 10:30am to 1pm CEST.
The schedule is as follows:
Rd 1: Silverstone – 28-29 April
Rd 2: Red Bull Ring – 26-27 May
Rd 3: Mugello – 9-10 June
Rd 4: Imola – 23-24 June
Rd 5: Zürich Airport – 28-29 July
Rd 6: Monza – 1-2 September
Rd 7: Barcelona – 29-30 September
Rd 8: Spa-Francorchamps – 27-28 October
Rd 9: Laguna Seca – 17-18 November
Battle for Glory: TBD – 8-9 December
Plus, if you want to consider joining in, your closest RU lounge will be the place to go! Visit Racing Unleashed’s website for more details.
Will you be making the trip to a Racing Unleashed lounge? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!