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  1. Gaming fair SimRacing Expo to be run for the 4th time in September Virtual motorsport enthusiasts have a reason to celebrate in September: The freebie gaming fair SimRacing Expo takes place from 16 - 17 September 2017 at Nürburgring. The tradeshow for virtual motorsport provides a unique chance for visitors to not only get the latest update on simracing and gaming trends but also test them. Entrance is for free. Last year the world’s best pilots as well as 15,000 visitors made their way to the event at Nürburgring. For this year the promoters promised even more quality as they planned some more new features. Marc Hennerici from ADAC Mittelrhein e.V., who organizes and manages the SimRacing Expo, explains them in the interview: As the SimRacing EXPO is being held for the 4th time this year, the tradeshow is already quite well established in this rather young environment of virtual motorsport. What motivated you back then to set up an event like this? Hennerici: We‘re currently experiencing a real boom of e-sport worldwide. Virtual motorsport is actually the only sport that is a little lagging behind. Although the communities are very active and highly committed since the early 2000s, the capacities and resources in the background were lacking in order to set up an appealing event. Then, since we are the promoter of the Blancpain GT Series at Nürburgring, we had the idea of utilizing the Nürburgring Boulevard and give Simracing a good start in a historic motorsport environment. Ever since then the visitor numbers of SimRacing Expo have been increasing. Can this also be taken as a sign for an ever increasing quality of the event? Hennerici: Of course we had to go through a learning curve, that at some point requires nothing else but “Trial & Error“. But together with our partners we’ve always drawn the right conclusions and continuously improved the event’s quality. Last year’s event has convinced all partners and participants completely. This now enables us to say that we found the basic orientation after year 3. But this doesn’t mean at the same time that we’re resting. Quite the contrary, this year we will continue working on further details. What do the visitors have to look forward to this year? Will there be any changes with regard to the past SimRacing Expo tradeshows? Hennerici: One of the novelties will be that beside the ADAC SimRacing Trophy a new virtual competition will be held that the world’s best simracers will be taking part in. At this point I don’t want to reveal too much. All that I can say is that it will be team based and inspired by real endurance races. Moreover, we are very happy to welcome the RCCO with their electrically driven slotcars for the first time this year. I guess every spectator that owned a slotcar track can identify and instantly indulges in reminiscences and childhood memories. Also the RC cars (radio controlled) will make their contribution to the visitors‘ entertainment. They have been participating since the very beginning ot the event and it’s always great to see them passionately organizing such an impressive racing weekend every year. So far the highlight of each SimRacing Expo has been the ADAC SimRacing Trophy that is held onsite. What makes the participation so special? And how can one participate? Hennerici: The appeal is definitely the hard knock-out mode. This always bears some surprises and garantuees equal opportunities for everyone as completely identical simulators are provided. Additionally, the best simracers are competing against each other here. Among others the stars that have dominated the so far biggest and best dotated virtual racing event (Formula E Event in Las Vegas). The participation is made via online qualification. The conditions of participation will be available on our website soon: E-sport is becoming ever more popular. Even soccer clubs such as FC Schalke 04 have their own e-sport teams. SimRacing EXPO has been the first tradeshow that is entirely dedicated to virtual motorsport. Where does the journey lead to? In how far are the borders blurring between real and virtual sport? Hennerici: Hardly any young professional race driver can afford nowadays doing their race preparation without a simulator. I think that this is one main indicator how close simulations are to reality. Also, professional race drivers do compete in races set up by simracing communities in their spare time. SimRacing Expo surely was an additional catalyst for this development in 2014. Beside its competition SimRacing Expo is well known for its exhibitors that offer high quality products for virtual motorsport. Many of the race drivers that were - only a couple of meters away - racing in the Blancpain GT Series found their way to our event, got infected with the “Virus Simracing“ and own a race simulator now. We are proud to see that other promoters like the Formula E are adopting the concept. As the technology is getting better and better, we are convinced that this trend is continuing. The venue of the SimRacing Expo is also an inherent part of the event: the Nürburgring. What makes the location so special? Hennerici: Virtual motorsport meets a worldwide unique history. The Nürburgring is the most legendary race circuit of the world, but shows itself in such a young and fresh manner when everything a real motorsport fan’s heart longs for is provided only within a few meters. This year again, the Nürburgring will host the Blancpain GT Series on 16/17 September. More than 50 GT3 cars with the world’s best GT race drivers deliver an unbelievable spectacle to spectators. Many simracers are visiting a race circuit for the very first time and are fascinated by the infernal sound. The SimRacing Expo, where all motorsport hobbies are presented, takes places only few steps away from the grand stands. One can say that the complete range of motorsport is shown on that weekend and that the various communities are a part of the big motorsport family!
  2. This is the third edition of an event unique of its kind; it is a combination of virtual and real racing. While the inaugural GT race cars compete at the Nürburgring race circuit, a virtual competition and trade fair takes place at the °boulevard, the SimRacing Expo, at the same time. Good news for all fans of virtual motorsport: The SimRacing EXPO will be held again this year in September. From September 17 to 18 visitors get updated not only about the latest SimRacing and gaming trends, but can also test them on the spot. What’s special: At the same time and at the same place the GT500 race, the season finale of the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup, takes place. The Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup is the world’s biggest GT3 race series with a grid of more than 50 competitors showing motorsport at its best on the just more than 5 km long Grand Prix track. Legendary sports cars and dream sports cars such as Porsche, Lamborghini, McLaren, Audi, Aston Martin, AMG or BMW will enchant the fans. In the 3 hours endurance race race professionals will be fighting for the deciding points of the championship. This way the SimRacing EXPO together with Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup delivers the perfect combination of virtual and real motorsport. “With the venue directly at Nürburgring we create a very special atmosphere for our visitors as they have the chance to experience thrilling motorsport first-hand only a couple of meters away“, explains Marc Hennerici from ADAC Mittelrhein e.V., who is organizing and managing the SimRacing EXPO. The doers of the SimRacing EXPO expect again numerous renowned exhibitors from the virtual racing scene for this year. The event is supposed to grow in 2016 in terms of quantity and quality. From the newest game to the matching accessory, there is something for everybody, for the gaming newby as well as for the professional. Hennerici considers the SimRacing EXPO to be on a good way: „The close interaction between audience and companies as well as the special atmosphere of the location at Nürburgring makes the SimRacing EXPO a highlight for gaming fans and exhibitors.“ The enormous popularity among visitors has been proven in the past two years. The uniqueness of the format has been spread even far beyond national borders. Hennerici: “We are looking forward to welcome international visitors again this year.“ On September 17th and 18th the SimRacing EXPO will be staged already for the third time. No less than 8,800 sqm will make the heart of every SimRacing fan beat faster as this is the extensive area numerous exhibitors will present their latest SimRacing trends at. With Vesaro, Evotek and Actoracer STL three simulation technology heavy weights will be showing their newest racing simulators. At SimRacing EXPO it’s all about virtual motorsport. Visitors not only get free access to the exhibition and will be provided with a world full of the cutting-edge trends of SimRacing and gaming, but do also have the chance to test those hottest trends right away. Vesaro is based in Kent in the UK and is one of the leading brands in the field of simulators. Vesaro‘s core product is a worldwide unique modular system that offers a never before seen flexibility. It allows to individualize the simulator – from the steering to the sound system – exactly to the requirements of the player. Evotek has developed the currently lightest race simulator on the market. With more than 20 years of experience the Italian company is a pioneer in terms of simulator design. The flagship of the Evotek simulators is a perfect interplay between software and hardware that results in the perfect racing experience. Experiencing a realistic body sensation is the benefit of the STL Actoracer that will also be exhibiting at SimRacing EXPO. The equipment, consisting of three screens surrounding the race driver nearly in a 180° angle and special headphones with 5.1 sound system embracing him acoustically, ensures that the pilot will get a deep dive into racing. Actoracer will be offering test rides again this year at SimRacing Expo. As SimRacing fans are having a strong connection to real racing and real race cars a special highlight awaits all visitors: The season finale of the Blancpain GT Endurance Cup, will be hosted at the same time at the same place. Showing a grid of more than 50 race cars the biggest GT3 race series of the world will perform motorsport at its best on the just over 5 km long Grand Prix track. Legendary sports cars and dream sports cars such as Porsche, Lamborghini, McLaren, Audi, Aston Martin, AMG or BMW will enchant the fans at the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup. In the 3 hours endurance race professionals will be fighting for the deciding points of the championship. This way the SimRacing EXPO together with Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup delivers the perfect combination of virtual and real motorsport.
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