Virtual Bahrain GP a big hit: 'Diversity in drivers made it really good'

24-03-2020 19:42
by Editorial Team
Virtual Bahrain GP a big hit: 'Diversity in drivers made it really good'

With hundreds of thousands of fans watching live across different platforms, the first official virtual Grand Prix turned out to be a resounding success. According to ex-Formula 1 driver Johnny Herbert, who was involved himself on Sunday evening, it was due to the enormous diversity on the grid.

Two current F1 drivers competed in the online race - Lando Norris and Nicholas Latifi. The rest of the grid consisted of simracers as well as celebrities from other sports and other disciplines. 

Cyclist Sir Chris Hoy and golfer Ian Poulter also participated, and even former One Direction singer Liam Payne appeared at the start. The lack of experience of these drivers made for an enormous chaos at the start of the race, but Herbert explained how this made things more entertaining.

"There was a diversity of guys, and because of that, it made the entertainment side of it really good," the Grand Prix winner told GPFans.

"If you had the current grid racing would that be as much fun as having a Sir Chris Hoy? Probably not. He's a petrol-head anyway, with Ian Poulter the same, and for me, that added to it because it was other people getting involved."

Herbert, now active as an analyst for Sky Sports F1, started at the back of the grid but cut off the first chicane completely at the start, causing him to temporarily drive at the front. He obviously got a huge penalty, but this only made it more fun for the Brit.

"People were saying there was going to be a big shunt at turn one, so I thought 'I'm not going to get involved in that'.

"I decided I'd turn right a bit earlier. I got a 10-second penalty, but it was worth it. Stuff like that, all the crashing, added to the whole thing."

Read more about: Formule 1 GP Bahrein

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