Ethan Grigg-Gault has been crowned the VSR Invitational Showdown champion at the Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix 2019 after winning a thrilling Grand Final against fellow simulator racer Ross Rizzo.
With four Esport gamers taking on four real-life drivers in a knockout style draw on the two Motum Simulators, the eight competitors took each other on a simulated Albert Park circuit.
Representing the four real-life drivers were CAMS PAYCE Australian F4 drivers Jayden Ojeda and Antonio Astuti, 2018 Aussie Driver Search winner Lee Partridge and Radical Australia Cup driver David Crampton.
Nick Voon and David Haines were the other two gamers taking part in the event that was mainly dominated by the Esport drivers.
Grigg-Gault's day was faultless, knocking out Astuti and Haines with ease on his way to the Grand Final, while Rizzo’s journey to the final race was a bit more difficult.
Knocking out Patridge in the first round, Rizzo faced a stubborn Ojeda in the semi-final with both drivers spinning out multiple times, however it was Rizzo who managed to recover fastest and set up a final with Grigg-Gault.
In the Grand Final, Grigg-Gault flexed his muscles and showed why he was always going to be hard to beat, eventually crossing the line ahead of a gallant Rizzo.
“I’m absolutely ecstatic at the moment,” a jubilant Grigg-Gault said post-race.
“I just came to the Australian Grand Prix to do a bit of spectating and I got invited to this awesome simulator event.
“I thought I’d come and have a crack and in the end we managed to come away with the win and I’ve got an awesome trophy to show for it.”
When it came to the competitors, Grigg-Gault was impressed with the quality of opposition taking part in the Showdown.
“We had some pretty stiff competition here today,” Grigg-Gault added.
“Ross (Rizzo) is no joke when it comes to simulations and we’ve got Jayden Ojeda who was last year’s F4 champion.
“There are some very good drivers here on display so to come away with the win in the end, I am very happy.”
As for Rizzo, he was just happy to make it to the Grand Final.
“I am happy to have come second today,” Rizzo said.
“We know how good Ethan is in any car in the simulator, so I am not surprised at all to lose to him.
“To come second to him is something I can be quite proud of.”