Murray enjoys virtual Porsche debut

Porsche Motorsport Australia has successfully debuted in the Esports world, with 44 entries in the Porsche PAYCE and Michelin Virtual Cup Australia’s first round at the Phillip Island Grand Prix Circuit.

Open to all competitors from both the Porsche PAYCE Carrera Cup Australia and the Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge Australia, a host of the star drivers from both categories competed, with three separate race winners.

Taking out the first race was 2019 Porsche Michelin Sprint Challenge Australia series winner Harri Jones, while New Zealand teenager Callum Hedge won the third and final race of the evening and both drivers managed to add another podium finish to their haul of points.

However, the drive of the night had to go to race two winner and current Porsche PAYCE Carrera Cup Australia leader Cooper Murray, with the Victorian claiming pole position and two top-five finishes either side of his win– despite being taken out in both races.

Having been an avid sim user for more than seven years, the 18-year-old was thrilled to finally be able to put his sim skills to use when Porsche Motorsport Australia unveiled the new competiton.

“I love being on the sim and have really good experiences with them. I have always been big in them since I was 11,” Murray said.

“Porsche Australia put together this virtual cup for us drivers. When they sent out an email saying they were going to announce the competition, it wasn’t compulsory, but I was really excited to get involved.

“I feel it’s a great opportunity for us to continue competing in some capacity, as well as promote our sponsors who are not getting any love or exposure to audiences because of the current situation.

“I obviously know how to drive differently on the sim as opposed to real life and I know how to get the advantages. It showed on Monday night when I was up against the other Porsche competitors.

“I feel I had a good night with pole position and a race win. In the other races, I was leading but got taken out at the same part of the track. I feel I did a good job to recover and finish in the top five both times.

“At the end of the day, it’s all a bit of fun and I am looking forward to the next round.”

While he was the only driver to finish in the top five in every race, Murray now trails Jones in the outright standings with Porsche Junior Jaxon Evans in third place.

Highlights from the round will be released through the CarreraCupAus YouTube channel on Friday 8 May at 8pm AEST.

The next Porsche PAYCE and Michelin Virtual Cup Australia round will feature two races at the Barcelona Circuit and a night race at Daytona in the USA on 18 May.