Carlos Sainz Jr. has become the latest Formula 1 driver to take a step into the world of Esports by joining the grid for this weekend's Virtual Chinese Grand Prix.
McLaren driver Sainz will link up with team-mate Lando Norris for the third F1-backed Virtual GP event, which has enjoyed an increase in real-world participations at each event.
The virtual race at the Shanghai International Circuit on Sunday - in lieu of the postponed Chinese Grand Prix - will now feature over one-third of the F1 grid.
- More from the world of Esports
- Check out Motorsport Games and all of its exciting Esports products
- F1 drivers raise $48,000 for charity in Race for the World event
- Van Gisbergen beats wildcard Verstappen in Supecars Eseries
- Bagnaia wins chaotic second #StayAtHomeGP MotoGP Esports race
- Simon Pagenaud becomes third different race winner in virtual IndyCar
- McLaughlin survives fuel scare for Monza Supercars Eseries victory
Sainz's participation was confirmed by F1 on its social media channels on Friday, with the Spaniard joining Norris, Charles Leclerc, Antonio Giovinazzi, Alexander Albon, George Russell and Nicholas Latifi in the field.
Leclerc won the most recent Virtual GP race for Ferrari, taking place on the Albert Park circuit in place of the Vietnam Grand Prix two weeks ago.
Another newcomer to the Virtual GP field will be recent Formula 2 race Juan Manuel Correa, who will partner Giovinazzi at Alfa Romeo.
Correa has been part of Alfa Romeo's young driver programme since March 2019.
Correa has been regularly competing in sim racing to stay sharp and entertained as part of his recovery from severe injuries sustained during the Formula 2 accident at Spa last August which also tragically claimed the life of Anthoine Hubert.
Correa's former F2 team-mate, Callum Ilott, will race alongside Leclerc for Ferrari this weekend, while Red Bull driver Albon will be joined by Real Madrid footballer Thibaut Courtois.
The remainder of the field is still to be confirmed, but is set to be made up once again by a mixture of junior formula drivers and other recent F1 racers.
Norris, Leclerc, Giovinazzi, Albon, Russell and Latifi will all feature in the final round of the charity 'Race for the World' series on Friday night.
The sextet have helped raise over $48,000 for the World Health Organisation's COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund ahead of the final two races of their championship.
The Virtual Chinese Grand Prix takes place at 6pm BST on Sunday, and will be broadcast across F1's social media channels and on YouTube.
Autosport has produced a standalone special magazine to celebrate our 70th birthday. All current print subscribers will receive a copy for free. To order your copy of the 196-page Autosport 70th Anniversary issue, please go to: autosport.com/autosport70th