Latifi Edges Russell in #ChallengeWilliams Esports Event

Latifi Edges Russell in #ChallengeWilliams Esports Event

April 27, 2020

Williams Racing’s Nicholas Latifi bested his team mate George Russell on Sunday in the second of our F1 Esports Challenge events, where the pair took on a set of virtual challenges.

The only rookie on the 2020 grid, Latifi showed his sim racing prowess by defeating Russell 3-2 on points to emerge victorious. However, he was unable to beat Lando Norris’ score of five points, set weeks prior in the inaugural Challenge event, #ChallengeLando.

Williams Showdown

The first race of the evening took place around Suzuka circuit, and featured a four-strong grid of Williams alumni; Russell, Latifi, and academy members Jack Aitken and Dan Ticktum. With all four racing in identical Williams FW14Bs, it was Russell who took top honours, earning the first point of the evening.

Aitken and Latifi were less fortunate, with both having an off-track excursion during the event that dropped them down the order.

Poulter’s Revenge

After his tete-a-tete with Lando Norris in the inaugural event, Ian Poulter returned for vengeance. With a squad of influencers, racers and sports stars alongside him, he challenged the Williams pair to a 25% race around Silverstone, home of the British Grand Prix.

BRDC Formula 3 ace Bart Horsten shot off into an incredible lead and never looked back, winning the event comfortably. But behind the leader, it was the Williams pair who battled hard for second place. Points were awarded for accomplishing a variety of tasks, including the win, overtaking a team mate, fastest lap, and holding second place by the end of the penultimate lap.

Though the win was out of reach, Latifi managed the latter three criteria, scooping three points. Russell also gained a point for an earlier overtake on his stablemate, and finished third in the race. He also made the move of the race, capitalising on a battle ahead between Latifi and content creator Aarava.

Fan Lobby

With one race to go, and one point in it, it was down to the final race. A fan vote during the broadcast determined that a rain-soaked Spa-Francorchamps would be the setting, so 16 hungry racers, along with Ticktum and Aitken, piled in to virtual rural Belgium. The challenge was simple – win, and get two points.

Unfortunately for both drivers, that wasn’t to be the case, with spins and wayward cars causing havoc on the opening lap, and ruining the chances of a win for either. Latifi homed in on third towards the end of the race, but an ambitious move from Russell on the very last corner of the race put paid to that. And so with neither driver in the top two, that left Latifi to take a slender 3-2 win. Watch highlights from the fan lobby here.

Up next…

If you enjoyed the event, then there’s plenty more where that came from. Our next Virtual Grand Prix event is just around the corner, and will be taking place around the Autodromo Jose Carlos pace, home of the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Don’t miss the action from 1700 UTC on Sunday May 3 – live on Twitch, YouTube, and Facebook!

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