Daniel Abt has confirmed that he will not be racing for Audi in Formula E again in the aftermath of the scandal which has cost him his job.
Abt was accused and later found out to have had Lorenz Hoerzing, a sim racer from Austria, in his place during the Race At Home challenge round at Berlin Templehof.
The German driver was at the most recent round of the Race at Home Challenge, albeit out of focus and in the background as Hoerzing was obscured by the convenient placement of Abt’s microphone.
Abt posted a video onto his YouTube channel in which he stated: “As this topic has become so extreme in the media and has been talked about from A-Z, this virtual delict of mine, has real consequences for me, because today I was informed in a conversation with Audi, that our ways will split form now on.
“We won’t be racing together in Formula E anymore and the cooperation has ended. It is a pain, which I have never felt in this way in my life.
“It was extremely important to me, to take the chance here and now, to tell you how it was and what happened and to simultaneously apologise to my family, to my friends, to Audi, to my partners, to Formula E, to UNICEF, and of course to all fans who have supported me over the years, with all of my heart.
“I made a huge mistake. I stand by it. I hope you can forgive me.”
He also mentioned that he was unable to apologise fully for the incident earlier due to: “contractual guidelines and terms”.
He added: “When we were practicing for this ‘Race at Home’ challenge on a twitch stream, we were talking to other sim racers. We were communicating to them through an online programme. We discussed sim racing, we drove together and had fun.
“In this stream, on this day, we had a conversation and the idea came up, that it would be a funny move, if a sim racer basically drove for me, to show the other, real drivers, what he is capable of and uses the chance to drive against them.
“We wanted to document it and create a funny story for the fans with it.That was our idea on this day and our thought. So we talked about it, we thought about how to make it happen, how to document it and how to unwind it in a video afterwards.
“It is also very important for me, to say, it was never my intention, to let another driver drive for me to get a result, and keep quiet about it later on, just to make me look better.
“When we did the stream on Saturday and I “drove” this race, which I, of course, did not, we wanted to act as if I was actually driving to unwind it afterwards. It has never been our intention to lie to you, or to withhold anything from you."
Abt said the idea came about in a stream during the week before the race, and included a clip of the stream in his YouTube apology [in German with English subtitles]. He said: "I believe, that, by already openly communicating this idea live on stream and there were 1000 people watching us talking about it live. I think, that this in itself shows, that it was not about withholding anything, because it simply in not personally important to me."