The LAF (Latvian Automobile Federation) has committed to four of the six disciplines that will make up the inaugural FIA Motorsport Games, with entrants confirmed for the Touring Car Cup, Drifting Cup, Karting Slalom Cup and Digital Cup.
Linda Medne, LAF General Secretary: "For Latvian athletes, this opportunity is important. This type of event not only brings the name of their country to the world, but also shows how much the athlete has worked on their athletic development and talent development. For the federation, it is an opportunity to show that in a small country like Latvia, motorsport is at a high level!"
These are the thoughts of the drivers who will represent Latvia at the FIA Motorsport Games.
Touring Car Cup: Valters Zviedris (18)
Valters: "I'm always proud to represent my country in international races; it gives me extra motivation and passion to show myself well on the track. I always go to the competition with one goal: to win. In motorsport we are like a big family, but we have to understand that in order to win, someone has to lose at the same time. It is important to be able to imagine victory and to believe that you are able to do it. Hopefully our rented racing equipment will be at the highest level and I will be competitive with it."
Drifting Cup: Edmunds Berzins (32)
Edmunds: "This is a new challenge, with big responsibility on my shoulders. I am proud that in my second full race season I have been entrusted with representing Latvia in the FIA Motorsport Games. As far as we know, the drift discipline will be very widely represented. I will have fierce competition and I expect some battles. The gold medal sounds very tempting; I set myself high goals so I have more motivation to pursue them!"
Karting Slalom Cup: Nikolass Bertans (14) and Emilija Bertane (16)
Nikolass: "It is a great honour for me to compete outside Latvia. At the same time it is a big responsibility as my main sport is drift, but this time I will race in karting again. As in all other competitions, I will do my best to achieve the strongest result."
Emilija: "This is the first time for me to represent my country outside its borders and I'm a little scared because I haven't competed in karting for a very long time. It is difficult to predict how the race will go because I have no idea what the level of preparation of the other competitors is. It's hard to set a goal because the race format is something new to me, but I'll definitely try to drive as best I can."
Digital Cup: Kriss Jaunzemis (20)
Kriss: "This is quite an important event, not only for me but also, I think, for Latvian e-racing. It’s the first big step on the international stage, so it is important to leave a good first impression, but at the same time we have to grow a lot. My goal is to learn from strong competitors. Athletes like Mikail Hizal, Cody Nicola Latkovski, James Baldwin and Vasilii Anufriev have proven themselves to be the fastest racers in Gran Turismo: Sport. They are a group of very fast and experienced drivers."
Hosted by Rome and with the nearby Vallelunga Circuit staging the on-track action, the FIA Motorsport Games is a new multi-disciplinary contest that features six categories: GT Cup, Touring Car Cup, Formula 4 Cup, Drifting Cup, Karting Slalom Cup and Digital Cup.
Competitors from across the globe will chase a spot on the podium, with gold, silver and bronze medals awarded to the top-three finishers in each event. These results will produce an overall medal table, with the top National Sporting Authority (ASN) awarded the inaugural FIA Motorsport Games trophy during the closing ceremony in Rome.
Further entry lists will be announced over the next week. Sporting and technical regulations are available at fia.com.