Our writer Luca still has a lot to learn, but he has been making steady improvements and getting great results. Read this next chapter on his sim racing journey.
Hello everyone, it’s Luca but you can call me Luca and thank you for taking an interest in my sim racing journey. In these articles, I am documenting my experiences competing on sims in league competitions and online matchmaking races.
Having previously believed it would not be worth forking up the money to spend on a high level gaming PC, I relented and have never enjoyed sim racing more than I am now. I had always thought to myself: if I wasn’t good with the setup I had when I raced on PlayStation, how would I be any better on the likes of iRacing, rFactor 2 and ACC?
Well, it would appear I am much better than I could have ever given myself credit for, if some results of mine as of late are anything to go by. But I know I still have a lot to learn. Even some very basic things that maybe everyone should know.
My first ventures into sim racing competitions with United Sim Team can be read up on here. Now, I have made huge strides in an rFactor 2 league and getting a licence promotion on iRacing.
Back in March, I was invited to partake in World eX Bizz. I remained close to the organisers after making my PC sim racing debut in their 2021 season finale, and this Bizz series was open to more amateur level drivers. So, perhaps it was more my speed.
I got a respectable result on my debut with a fifth place finish in the first race of Round 1. I was on my way to scoring points in the reverse grid second race before my screen went black. For the second round though, I never would have anticipated the result I got. Lining up fifth, I got past the previous season’s champion Julius Martin, and then another competitor got spun off so I was in third.
Holding the gap throughout the race, the reigning champion got closer and I began to get flustered. I made a few errors but I held on just enough to get a third place finish. I admit, I was so overwhelmed that I shed a few tears after the race. Then I did some amazing donuts.
The most recent round was incredible. On the Long Beach street circuit, I managed two P2 finishes behind Devin Braune, which is basically a double win as Braune is just way too good for us mere mortals. I got two places off the start and held on in the first race, then I made a load of places up at the start of the second and even went side by side in the tricky section between Turns 3 and 6, keeping it clean.
I never thought I was capable of all that. Getting a double P2 finish in World eX Bizz is something I never expected.
Committing the Cardinal Sin
One of my teammates in United Sim Team is the Twitch streamer Elz Indriani, we’ve become very good friends and we intend to do the 6 hours of the Glen iRacing Special Event together in June. She suggested we do a VRS Endurance race, but to do that I had to get promoted to Class C licence.
We plan to use the 488 GT3 Evo for the Watkins Glen race so I bought that, and discovered a new series was open to me, the Ferrari GT3 Challenge. That week it was on one of my favourite tracks, Oulton Park. So I began constantly racing that and trying my utmost to not get any incident points.
But it was here I found out I messed up.
In multiple races, I had people sending me messages about my terrible connection. I kept vanishing and reappearing on their screens, which had me questioning a few things. I posed the question to the iRacing sub-Reddit, and the helpful people on there said I should get an ethernet cable.
I had been running on Wi-Fi, and the router was quite a fair bit away from my PC. We got an ethernet cable installed, but not before I got my Class C licence. I have since done a VRS endurance race with Elz which was streamed to her Twitch channel, we had a few teething troubles.
But now, I want to pay a tribute to a friend who indirectly got me started in PC sim racing.
In the past, I referenced that my ultimate goal was to compete in the VCO Esports Racing League. This championship was the vision of VCO founder Florian Haasper, born out of a conversation we had all the way back in July 2020.
Before United Sim Team transitioned from being eTeam BRIT, I intended to compete in the ERL Fall Cup with them. I didn’t have a PC and put my plans to do ERL on hold until I got one, but unfortunately ERL won’t happen this year, which is disappointing. However, when you find out the reason, it’s understandable.
Florian has had a reoccurring ankle injury that he has been constantly in and out of hospital for. Coupled with not meeting financial targets for his agency, they had to scale back their operations which included ERL. It’s gutting, but honestly if it means Florian can get back on his feet quicker, then I am more than okay with it.
I had the fortune of finally meeting Florian when I turned up unannounced at the SimplyRace facility in Milton Keynes on 26 February this year. It was the final day of the Esports Racing World Cup and they were running it from there, it was a long time coming and it was so wonderful to finally get to meet him.
Even though I won’t be able to fulfil my dream of being an ERL driver, my ambition of competing across a variety of titles in high profile events is now possible because of the vision Florian and I share. Esports racing is more than just one type of car on one game, it’s about finding the drivers who are quick no matter the discipline or platform.
That’s what I aim to do. Learn as much as I can, compete in as many events as possible representing United Sim Team and enjoying every second. I have absolutely loved sim racing since getting my PC, and it’s thanks to Florian and everyone else who has played even the most minor of parts helping me get here.
Next up for me is a major event OverTake is involved with. I will be competing in the OverTake entry of the OverTake Targa Sicilia Rinascita this weekend!
What are some essential pieces of knowledge for sim racers? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!