iOpener media have let us know that they are holding an event at Zolder this weekend.
During the season’s final of FIA GT taking place at Zolder this weekend, the circuit is host of an innovative world premiere. For the first time ever during an official FIA event, virtual racers around the world will be able to compete in real-time against Belgian FIA GT driver, Bas Leinder, in his Ford GT 40 of MARCVDS Racing. The novel part is that Leinders won’t be driving in the game, but he is driving in his real car at the real circuit. This is made possible by a product called ‘iOpener Enabled’.
This product uses special developed Satellite Navigation technology for high accuracy positioning of the real car and injects this real car via complex hardware and software and via internet into a game, which can be played on the PC or game computer in people’s homes. The iOpener Enabled product is developed and patented by German based company iOpener media GmbH.
“Today’s event marks the beginning of a new dimension for racing as well as gaming! Race fans will be in the middle of the action themselves!”, Walter Goossens, Marketing Director of Circuit Zolder affirms, he adds: “We are proud to be the ‘first official iOpener Enabled test circuit’.
FIA GT driver Leinders of the Belgian Marc VDS Racing Team says: “I am honored to be the first FIA GT driver to face the challenge of virtual opponents and can’t wait to be part of this amazing event!” He adds: “Although I can’t see the virtual drivers, the knowledge that thousands of people will try to beat me gives some kind of an exciting feeling ”.
iOpener CEO, Andy Lürling explains: “Early October we released the beta version of the first iOpener Enabled game (www.real-timeracing.com) . The gamers will be racing both from around the world on their PC at home, but for this special occasion, during the FIA weekend we also have two publicly accessible iOpener Enabled race simulators in the paddock at Circuit Zolder.”
Also Anthony Kumpen, and Bert Longin, both Belgian and driving Corvettes in the FIA GT would have enjoyed taking part in this innovative event, showing their skills in a direct competition with the gamers at home. Both see the benefits for both the motorsport industry to be more connected to the race fans in an interactive way. Though for they are still in the battle for the overall FIA GT Championship, the FIA decided on having only the Matech Ford GT of Leinders ‘iOpener Enabled’. The, first reaction of gamers learns that they are totally excited or trying this new game feature both in the paddock and at the gamer’s homes.