A 25-year-old professional gamer has been handed the role of simulator driver for the McLaren Formula 1 team, following a recent eSports competition.
McLaren's World Fastest Gamer competition started in May and saw contestents from all over the world take part.
Earlier today we reported that the victor had been decided for the World's Fastest Gamer competition, and that Rudy van Buren was the champion, and we caught up with him to ask about how much this meant to him, given his previous racing ambitions. However, due to a lack of funding, he was forced to quit at the age of 16.
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"I stopped go-karting around 2006, and that just closed my real-life racing book for that period, and you start doing sim racing as a replacement, out of pure fun basically", he told us. To think that I came to the McLaren Technology Centre for the very first time last week but am leaving here today as McLaren's newest employee is mind-blowing.
'Every boy that starts karting dreams about F1, and at a certain point that dream just vanishes, ' said van Buren.
McLaren executive director Zak Brown said: "My congratulations to Rudy - he really showed the mettle, determination and ability to succeed".
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"I can't thank everyone enough for giving me this incredible opportunity; just being here, meeting the team and competing with some unbelievable people has been an unforgettable experience".
"This was an outstandingly tough contest, one where we went to great lengths to stretch our contestants beyond their limits, and he'll be a real asset to the organisation as we develop and refine our 2018 auto throughout the next season", McLaren CEO Zak Brown was quoted as saying. "[Sim] racing took a big explosion in how big it got in the last nine years, it grew a lot, it's still growing very fast, and then a competition like this came by, so then my own motorsport book got slightly open again and somewhat I'm at the point where I was nearly always dreaming about".
"It really has been the toughest job interview I've ever faced, but with such an incredible reward at the end of it".
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