World’s elite eSports gamers primed for WRC final in Ypres

World’s elite eSports gamers primed for WRC final in Ypres

12.08.2021: • Six gamers line up for eSports WRC Championship world final • Elite players battle for world title during Renties Ypres Rally Belgium • Title holder Lohan ‘Nexl’ Blanc back to defend crown • Winner handed keys to Toyota

•       Six gamers line up for eSports WRC Championship world final

•       Elite players battle for world title during Renties Ypres Rally Belgium

•       Title holder Lohan ‘Nexl’ Blanc back to defend crown

•       Winner handed keys to Toyota Yaris GR road car

•       Millions of fans will follow final on TV, WRC+ and social media

Six elite pilots from four countries will battle head-to-head for the coveted eSports WRC Championship presented by Toyota Gazoo Racing world title in Belgium this weekend (Saturday).  

Having originally been scheduled to take place in late 2020, the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic forced the rescheduling of the event to this weekend. The winner will drive away in a brand-new Toyota Yaris GR road car.

The 2021 grand final will take place just a few weeks later, in Athens on 8 September as a prelude to Acropolis Rally Greece.

Five finalists, including two-time champion Lohan ‘Nexl’ Blanc and regular season champion Sami-Joe Abi Nakhle, emerged from more than 15,000 players who contested 11 qualifying rounds. All were played on the official video game of the FIA World Rally Championship.

The sixth finalist, Yanis ‘Greekman’ Kalogerias, qualified via a wildcard event held at Rallye Monte-Carlo 2020.

The full list of finalists in seeding order is:

1.    Sami-Joe Abi Nakhle (LBN)
2.    Lohan ‘Nexl’ Blanc (FRA)
3.    John ‘Izamusing’ Bebnowicz-Harris (FRA)
4.    Dylan Noel (FRA)
5.    Marco ‘Botti JR’ Bottinelli (ITA)
6.    Yanis ‘Greekman’ Kalogerias (GRE)

The finale of the fifth edition of the eSports tournament will be fought out in Ypres as the eighth round of the real-life WRC makes its Belgian debut on the asphalt roads around the town.

Finalists will face each other in a round robin on eight special stages using identical rigs provided by Playseat, steering wheels from Fanatec, PCs delivered by FlexIT and screens made available by BenQ/Mobiuz.

The four quickest drivers over the eight stages will then move through to the televised grand final which will be held over three more stages at 19.00 CET. Fans can tune in around the world on the WRC’s official Facebook page at

In addition to the winner earning a Yaris GR, the runners-up will not leave empty-handed. The second placegetter will win a simulator by Fanatec, Playseat and BenQ/Mobiuz, the third man on the podium earns a TW Steel Canteen Watch and the MVP will claim a gaming PC from FlexIT.

Additionally, the driver who produces the biggest moment of the day will walk away wearing a TW Steel watch.

The eSports WRC Championship is organised by WRC The Game publisher Nacon and development studio KT Racing.

It has been a feature of the WRC’s official video games since 2016.  A copy of the game is the only entry ticket needed to have a shot at the world crown. Worldwide over 200,000 players take part in the weekly challenges and the eSports WRC tournament, collectively playing more than 4.4 million stages each month.

About WRC Promoter GmbH

WRC Promoter GmbH is responsible for all commercial aspects of the FIA World Rally Championship, including TV production and the marketing of global media and sponsorship rights. The Promoter also has responsibility to increase the field of participants and to propose the venues that form the FIA WRC calendar.

The World Rally Championship is the FIA’s premium rally series. WRC showcases authentic motorsport, high performance cars and the world’s best drivers competing in dramatic surroundings ranging from the ice and snow of Scandinavia to the blistering heat of Italy in mid-summer. Established in its current format in 1973, WRC participants battle for the drivers’ and manufacturers’ world titles at 12 rallies. Additional championship information can be found at

Next eSports event: eSports WRC Grand Final presented by Toyota Gazoo Racing, 8 September 2021.

Mark Wilford- photos WRC Promoter


12.08.2021 / MaP

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