An image of our editor Luca in a sim rig.

Tackling the Glen on my Sim Racing Journey

Back in June, Luca competed in the 6 hours of the Glen iRacing Special Event with Elz Indriani, his teammate at United Sim Team. Here is how they got along!

Yeah I know, falling behind a little bit but I’m finally here to tell you guys about my experience competing in the 6 hours of the Glen. This is an event I had been looking forward to immensely.

My good friend and teammate Elz Indriani agreed to do the race with me. It was my first long haul endurance race, and I knew I wanted to have Elz as my first teammate. Unfortunately, Elz had also agreed to do a later timeslot with another team. That left us with a bit of a conundrum.

We would either have to race during the night for me, or for Elz. I elected to take the timeslot where I’d race through the night, meaning we’d go from around midnight to dawn my time. Quite the trial by fire.

Racing Through the Night

For the sake of gaining experience, I decided to qualify. I made a hash of my first lap being too cautious, so I went for it on the second, which went well. I mounted the kerb in the chicane, so that second lap was invalidated. The only people starting behind us were ones who didn’t bother to qualify at all.

Come the start of the race, I assumed us in the GT3 class would be starting when we got on the start finish straight. So imagine my shock when they started us before the penultimate corner.. I was pretty flustered but I got my head together and drove my stint. Just in time for the GTP cars (no LMP2 entries in my split) to start lapping us.

I had never done online multi class driving on iRacing in an event before. We had done some practice as a team, and I knew to stay on my line and be predictable. But even so, it would appear those driving the faster classes didn’t know where to go.

A red chrome Ferrari with 'United Sim Team' written on it, the 'OverTake' logo and a pink logo saying 'Elz'
Our team manager Sophie was kind enough to put the OverTake logo on the car! Image credit:

I recall multiple instances where the GTP cars just tried to divebomb me. I had to jump out of the way for a fair majority of them, even though one of my United Sim Team teammates said to hold my line and let them navigate a way around me.

One instance though, I had just exited out of the Chute. I had a sizeable margin to the GTP behind, but I anticipated it would catch me just as I would start braking for the Toe hairpin. So I stayed to driver’s right, expecting them to take the normal racing line. But they didn’t.

They tried to pass me on the inside, even though I was not deviating back to the racing line. There was plenty of time to work out where to go, but they never did. I became super anxious whenever the faster cars came to pass us.

A red seat, a PC with a rainbow glow and a monitor showing an in-car view on iRacing.
This is Luca’s setup for sim racing.

After the first stint, I handed it over to Elz. It was quite the physical experience, and I immediately went to take a cold shower. The room was hot too, and I even had to turn my Fanatec wheelbase off during Elz’s stints as the base got quite hot. Thankfully, iRacing doesn’t force you to tab out of the game if you turn off your wheel.

During Elz’s time driving, I was religiously spectating with the Rear Chase cam with the Relative open on the black box. Laser focused, I let Elz know when GTP cars were coming up. I recall being way more nervous about it than Elz, who if you’ve ever seen on Twitch, is just a barrel of laughs.

Whilst I would get annoyed at drivers messing up my pit entry, Elz would laugh her head off. She was always trying to get me to chill. Poor Elz, right? Having to put up with my short-tempered ways. She deserves way better if you ask me.

But one instance I do recall where we both bursted out laughing. I took back control for a stint and was exiting the pits. We came out side-by-side with another GT3. This was a driver we had a run in with earlier in the race where they completely failed to acknowledge our existence. Mine and Elz’s connections were fine. So it clearly wasn’t a case of lag or netcode.

But heading into the Esses T2, they simply drove across into us as if we weren’t there, despite them having full view of us. We laughed our heads off as their car turned around and hit the barrier on the outside of Esses T3.

It wasn’t all plain sailing for us. Remember how I just said my connection was okay? Well, for a few seconds, that wasn’t the case. I had a GTP car behind me on the run-up to the chicanes and for a brief moment, I was the only car on track. I panicked, thinking we had disconnected. Then, BAM, I was back. But only just in time to catch that aforementioned GTP car unsighted and we collided.

I won’t lie, I was quite dejected. But again, the one person who helped me through it all was Elz. This is why I wanted Elz to be my teammate for my first ever iRacing Special Event and it truly was special to me. After six long hours and the sun rising around the time the race ended at 5am, we finished.

I can’t remember our finishing position but it was enough for Elz and I to gain 1 and 2 iRating points respectively. Six straight hours just to gain such little iRating… but it was a joyous experience. So it was worth it.

What Next?

Endurance racing was something I always knew I wanted to do when I got my PC. But I’m still very apprehensive about doing a full 24-hour race. Since then, the 24 hours of Spa iRacing Special Event has taken place.

I tentatively put myself forward for Spa at United Sim Team, but insisted I would only compete if they couldn’t get enough takers to make a full team. Thankfully they did. Who knows if I’ll ever feel fully ready. Perhaps the best way to do that is dive right in at the deep end and hope I don’t drown.

There are a few other endurance events I’ve done and am doing in the future. Some of which I will talk about in the future.

I’ve been slacking on the Assetto Corsa Competizione side, so I am committing to a league that is eligible for the top finishers to qualify for the SimGrid VCO Grand Finals. Safe to say we won’t make it into the Grand Finals, but the aim is to get better on ACC.

I’ve also since done the MS Charity Race with another UST teammate of mine, Patrick. I enjoyed that a great deal, especially since we drove the Cadillac GTP. We did have to dodge a load of Toyota GR86s however, which was a harrowing experience.

But of course, I began writing these Sim Racing Journey columns with one of the main aims to compete in two major VCO events I had a hand in conceptualising. One of those was VCO INFINITY; 24 sprint races in 24 consecutive hours. It’s set to take place very soon. Hopefully, we as United Sim Team get an entry.

As someone who values versatility, I aim to make it as difficult as I can for myself. For the first two runnings of INFINITY, there have been five cars and five tracks to make up the 24 races. I aim to not stick to just the one car, and will try to race each car and each track. Wish me luck!

Before I end this off, I implore you all to go follow Elz Indriani on Twitch. She is a joy to watch and interact with, and a wonderful teammate to me.

How did you do in your last iRacing Special Event? Tell us on Twitter at @OverTake_gg or in the comments down below!

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