Audi Driver Who Used Ringer In Online Race Dumped From Own Team

Abt in happier days driving a physical car, Paris, 2019.
Abt in happier days driving a physical car, Paris, 2019.
Photo: Getty Images

Daniel Abt got dropped from Audi Sport team ABT. The team with his name on it. How do you get dropped from your own team? Getting a ringer to sub in for you during an online race and getting caught.


Here’s today’s news on Daniel Abt from The Race, which broke this story over the weekend:

Here’s a bit more of the details on how he got caught, as we wrote the other day:

Suspicions first rose about Abt when he qualified second for the race, held first place for a time, and ultimately finished third, far exceeding any of Abt’s previous performances. Later, eyebrows remained raised as the face of the competitor on Abt’s video feed was obscured by what appeared to be a microphone and his separate Twitch account was not streaming in parallel like normal.

When several drivers raised concerns, Mercedes driver Stoffel Vandoorne decided to call Abt during the race. Abt didn’t answer, seemingly confirming Vandoorne’s suspicions.

Friend of Jalopnik Hazel Southwell brought up that this is somewhat new territory for a driver punishment, as we don’t exactly have a clear category for what this online race was:


As far as I see it personally, I figure this is like the racing version of plagiarism, and I get why he was given the axe. But getting dropped by the team with your own name on it? That hurts.

Raphael Orlove is features editor for Jalopnik.



This was a... game? Like, not real world...

Ok admittedly I do NOT understand the draw in watching people play video games. Is there money involved in this? What does he stand to gain by cheating (obviously he’d do better in the pretend race but...)?

Why do we care about this?

I’m genuinely curious.