In the round-up: Nelson Piquet has been fined five million Brazilian Reals (£780,000) after a judge deemed he had made racist and homophobic comments about Lewis Hamilton in late 2021.
Piquet fined for racist and homophobic Hamilton comments
The 1981, 1983 and 1987 world champion apologised to Hamilton for the comments that were circulated widely on social media last June.
Formula 1, the FIA and Hamilton’s fellow drivers including Max Verstappen, Esteban Ocon, Daniel Ricciardo and George Russell all denounced Piquet’s offensive comments. Piquet was banned indefinitely from the F1 paddock as a result.
The BBC reported that after charges were brought against Piquet by four Brazilian human rights groups, Judge Pedro Matos de Arrudo ruled Piquet must pay five million Brazilian Reals “so that, as a society, we can someday be free from the pernicious acts that are racism and homophobia.”
Lag ends Verstappen and Palou’s iRacing Sebring 12 Hours
Formula 1 world champion Max Verstappen and 2021 IndyCar series champion Alex Palou suffered a frustrating early retirement from the lead of the GTD class of the iRacing Sebring 12 Hour top split.
The two champions teamed up for Team Redline in a Ferrari 488 and led the GTD class for the first hour of the race. However, a bizarre incident involving the number 192 URANO eSports GTP prototype car saw the number 101 Team Redline Ferrari suffer damage despite the two cars appearing to not make contact on replays. The apparent lag problems left Verstappen with a black-and-orange mechanical damage flag, being forced to retire the car due to the extent of the damage
Verstappen had won ten consecutive ranked iRacing races at Sebring earlier in the week in preparation for the special event, including beating Palou during one competition.
IndyCar game delayed beyond 2023
The officially licensed IndyCar Series game will not release in 2023 as originally scheduled, publishers Motorsport Games has announced.
Motorsport Games acquired the IndyCar license in 2021 and announced plans to release the first entry in a new IndyCar franchise this season. However, in a recent earnings call, the company reported significant financial problems.
“Based on this cash and cash equivalents position, and the company’s average cash burn, we do not believe we have sufficient cash on hand to fund our operations for the remainder of 2023 and that additional funding will be required in order to continue operations,” Motorsport Games said.
CEO Dmitry Kozko said the company “continue to make strides in our development efforts but we do not believe we will be in a satisfactory position to release it to the community this year. The IndyCar community has not had a dedicated IndyCar game in over a decade and we want to make sure that our IndyCar game is on par with other major racing games out there.”
IndyCar content is no longer officially allowed to be used for special events in iRacing due to Motorsport Games’ exclusive deal coming into effect this year.
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