The term “rage quit”, used mainly in a gaming context, means letting your emotions take over and prematurely stopping whatever it is that you’re doing, usually due to anger from something that transpired in the game.
We’ve all been there, because sometimes it’s easier to just give up than sitting around with no chance of redemption. Normally, rage-quitting wouldn’t have mattered much – you’ll probably take a small hit on your online gaming rank, or racing license points in sim racing, and that’s pretty much it.
However, for Nascar driver Bubba Wallace, the situation wasn’t so “normal” – Wallace was racing in Nascar’s official Pro Invitational Series event, held in place of actual races which were cancelled or postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Involved in several early incidents, Wallace was left with a damaged car with no fast-repairs to use. Instead of running around hopelessly at the back, Bubba Wallace decided to retire from the race.
With the event broadcasted live on television, fans who saw it live flocked to Wallace’s Twitter account to show their displeasure. As it turns out, one of Wallace’s sponsors, Blue Emu, weren’t too happy with the retirement too.
After Wallace tweeted a message mocking his fans for getting angry at him quitting in a video game, Blue Emu publicly announced on Twitter that they’re dropping him from sponsorship.
Perhaps Blue Emu have reacted a little strongly here, as racers sometimes retire from actual races too if their cars are too damaged to continue – though to be fair those drivers are in more danger than Wallace here.
However, it just goes to show how serious simulator racing, or virtual racing has become over the past few years, and especially now when racing series including Formula 1 are turning to virtual racing series to keep their fans engaged during the COVID-19 period, which put many countries in restricted-movement mode.