3/24/2020

Interview with SimRacingGirl

Sinem Temur, better known as SimRacingGirl, is becoming an ever more popular presence in the sim racing community. What started out as a fun idea soon became a passionate hobby.

SimRacingGirl is Belgian-Turkish and lives in Germany. Her work as an influencer covers product reviews and interviews, as well as challenges to match the fastest times set by top-level sim racers in the Porsche Esports Supercup (PESC). We caught up with the 31-year old at the IAA Motor Show to talk sim racing, PESC and the online sim racing community.

How did you get into Sim Racing?

In 2016, my partner came home with a whole setup – a seat, wheel and pedals. That night a group of all his friends, the ‘boys club’, were at our home. They were all so excited to try out sim racing and I wanted to have a go. They told me ‘no, it’s not your thing, it’s not for girls’.

I was upset but I wanted to prove that I could race and even be faster than them. I started practicing every day on one track – back then we only had one game! I was getting really fast. In a week, my partner told me that I was adapting really quickly and getting used to the game pretty fast in a short period of time. That’s how it all started.

Did your partner introduce you to the world of motorsport?

Yes, he used to do motocross when he was young, and he always had this interest in motorsport like MotoGP and Formula 1. He would watch those races as well.

After you proved your speed to the boys, how did things take off from there?

Basically, after that, I just kept racing. I even bought a new steering wheel. Then my partner suggested I should make an Instagram page, just for fun.

We were just posting videos of me and that’s also why we called it SimRacingGirl – we didn’t think about how it would grow like it did.

Before we knew it, the account got a lot of followers and I got picked up by Vesaro. I started a YouTube channel and that is when I started doing reviews.

So it started as a fun idea?

Yes, it did. I think the growth also came because there were no girls on the scene. The name ‘SimRacingGirl’ helped a lot with that too, I think. If you look at other Esports or other gaming industries, sim racing is still such a small community so having a girl on the scene is very positive.

Talking about hardware, what was the next addition alongside your steering wheel?

I started getting a lot of products to review. I received a cockpit from Vesaro, gear from Fanatec, even a wind simulator – I got some crazy things to review!

I recently got a D-box motion system, which is basically a motion platform. I don’t use it every time because it makes the driving experience quite intense: the rig is constantly shaking.

You started with Project Cars. Nowadays, which sim software are you on?

I started with Project Cars, then I switched to Assetto Corsa. I played this game a lot. After that, I started with iRacing – I would practice with a friend of mine who is also a sim racer. Currently, I’m doing a lot of iRacing because of my involvement with the Porsche Esports Supercup series, so that is my main focus at the moment.

How did you get involved with the Porsche Esports Supercup?

Porsche contacted me four or five months ago and asked if I was up for a collaboration with them. Of course, I was really happy because who doesn’t want to work with Porsche? I also enjoyed the series a lot. iRacing is full of top-level sim racers competing in the online racing simulation, which makes it really interesting.

In my videos, I try to get as close as possible to the lap times of these sim racers. However, this requires a lot of practice. Their level is so high, and they are incredibly fast, that it’s impossible to reach their level. However, it’s fun for me to try.

Impossible?

Yes, I think so! I don't know what their schedule looks like, but I think a lot of these sim racers just practice, practice and practice. For me that would be very hard to do. I have a full-time job and I cannot practice every day. If I’m in my sim rig three times a week, then that is a lot.

What do you think about Porsche stepping into sim racing?

I think it definitely makes sim racing look more serious. I still believe there are people who still think that Esports is just ‘gaming’.

Sim set-ups right now are so close to real cars, with the “direct drive” technology of sim steering wheels for example. It’s really good that Porsche is involved with sim racing and it will definitely make the sim racing scene bigger. Especially with events like here at the IAA. There are a lot of people walking by who have not heard of sim racing before. With this, they will become aware, and they can try it out to experience the sim for themselves.

What do you expect to see from PESC next season?

I hope to see more people being involved with PESC. I think it’s pretty good already, as people are watching the races and are talking about PESC in the sim racing community. I hope it will have even more reach as it’s a cool format with good sim racers competing. I also hope to see new faces – maybe even another girl!

Have you noticed more female sim racers reaching out to you?

There are definitely more female sim racers compared to when I started. It might because of the SimRacingGirl channel. Maybe boys are trying to put their girlfriends into the rigs. However, I wish that I could see it evolve faster.

What would you like to do beyond sim racing?

I would love to go on a real track in a real car, to have coaching sessions and practice on the sim first and then go onto the track. Other than that, I do see my future in sim racing – not necessarily the racing aspect of sim racing but more with the community. I really enjoy the community and I think it’s amazing to be a part of it.

And it’s crazy to think that you only started three years ago!

Yes, it’s crazy! I work at a company that makes sim racing products, so sim racing is constantly in my head. I know how small the sim racing community is for someone outside, but for me it is huge. I am constantly surrounded by sim racers and sim racing. It is almost my world.

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