Esports driver banned for using name on game rig

Image copyright AFP Image caption No one at the eSports World Championship was aware of Andrew’s presence at the finals A professional esports driver has been suspended after competing in a US gaming competition…

Esports driver banned for using name on game rig

Image copyright AFP Image caption No one at the eSports World Championship was aware of Andrew’s presence at the finals

A professional esports driver has been suspended after competing in a US gaming competition using his name.

Andrew Moss has been banned from qualifying for the NextE Esports World Championship for sponsoring one of the 24 finalists, according to the Washington Post.

Moss, 29, used the legitimacy of his sponsored driver status to switch the name on his rig to resemble his sponsors.

Esports is a rapidly-growing global industry, attracting growing numbers of spectators, players and sponsors.

Image copyright Andrew Moss Image caption Moss built the 17ft, six-wheel car from scratch

One of the 24 competitors was a professional gamer known as DaiMoo2. He was competing at the South by Southwest festival in Texas, where a team of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive players and gamers at the event were able to livestream his final placement.

It is not clear how the other 12 finalists involved in the tournament weren’t aware that Moss was the car owner.

He made money from the venture through sponsorship deals with US firms such as tyre maker Michelin and race car manufacturer Toyota.

Esports represent a $379m (£278m) market in 2017, according to market research firm Newzoo.

Moss built the 17ft, six-wheel car himself, with help from 400 hours of tutorials online.

He paid $4,500 to buy the rig he used and spent $600 a week on maintenance. He claims to have racked up $80,000 since October 2017 in prize money.

“The best thing that happened from this is people getting a little more attention from peers and clients,” he told the Post.

“I don’t know if this incident was meant to be malicious or not.”

Image copyright Andrew Moss Image caption Moss started racing a car he built himself after telling friends he might do

“Moss is one of the first professional esports drivers in the United States to start competing on the series,” he said.

“This is not a victimless crime.”

Other former esports drivers have used their cars as props.

But such “slam-dunk” builds or modded rides are an increasingly rare sight.

In January, we reported the story of a Transformers-themed car in Amsterdam which was being driven around the city as part of a promotion by a Dutch sports clothing company.

Image copyright Damien Townsend Image caption Autobots and Decepticons were wheeled through the streets in a promotional stunt

Major IndyCar Championship driver and car maker Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing had to make a full disclosure after an image of a race car with their livery in a community blog post drew thousands of comments.

In 2008, American soccer player Christian Gomez won the EA Sports World Cup on his Pro EvoX3 Pro Evolution Soccer team.

He was banned from performing any kind of EA Sports-related promotion.

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