The hobby we now call sim racing was started many many years ago by crazy pioneers as a game – I know, most people would be upset hearing so, but there were no wheels and pedals, and most of the fun was happening behind the arrow of a keyboard.
Then, over the years, it got out of hands and developed in something more and more advanced and realistic: it is now by most considered a proper simulation, or if you want to call it, an e-sport.
With great power, comes a great number of accessories: our super competitive and expensive passion have a lot of enthusiasts looking for ways to improve their skills and overall experience. Not last, realism.
Among the most debated accessories between the community, we have sim racing socks and gloves. A lot of discussions between fans happen on a daily basis on whether gloves and socks are useful or just a “poser” accessory that makes no sense.
If socks can easily be justified by the need of not being barefoot or walking around the house with shoes, gloves have been definitely a controversial topic in our community.
Nevertheless, according to a strong faction of sim racers, there are a variety of benefits of using sim racing gloves:
- More grip and control, less sweat: wheels and bases have become quite powerful over time and during competitive sessions some sim racers prefer to have a stronger grip by using fitting gloves.
According to some, sim racing gloves can also increase the sensibility of the drive as you require to use less strenght
- Wheel protection: gloves can reduce the damage done to your super expensive wheel, generally made of alcantara or leather and prone to a lot of wear and tear. Less tears and swearing is good isn’t it?
- Realism and why not, being cool: if you like to be fully immersed in your virtual world, gloves can increase your realism. And, if you happen to be streaming your races, or just like to take the occasional picture for your social media, this could make you cooler (or not?)
While e-racers initially started using real racing gloves, gym or bike gloves, or other similar products, there is now definitely a wide range of brands involved in the production of sim racing specific gloves. Some, as Sparco, come directly from the real world, other specifically focus on the e-side of motorsport.
WHY ARE SIM RACING GLOVES BETTER THAN REAL RACING ONES?
This is debatable, but there are certainly a few reasons to prefer a product that has born to be used in e-sports:
- Price: real racing gloves are much more expensive, especially if they have omologation
- Materials: it’s not that common to face heat or fire during a sim racing session (although we’re sure someone somewhere did it), and gloves for being behind a computer are much lighter and more breathable materials
- Touchscreen compatibility: you might need to use your tablet, phone or dash and having a real racing glow means you’ll have to take it off every time.
Our unexperienced sim racing gloves picks:
We are personally not super expert in this field, being more scrappy racers than you would probably expect, but here a list of what we feel are the the best options in the market:
SPARCO HYPERGRIP + – 63,4€
This set of gloves comes from one of the most famus racing apparel manufacturers, Sparco. The Italian company has been known in motorsport for decades, and is now offering a decent range of products for gaming and sim racing.
The Hypergrip+ gloves are an upgrade of the well-known Hypergrip, adding a better fit and ergonomics and more grip zones to increase your feeling and control. They come in 4 different colours at a premium price.
The first thing that you notice about this product is definitely the affordability compared to the competition.
The Pure gloves have been deloped by Pure SimGear, a Dutch company driven by passionate sim racers trying to create the best possible product at an affordable price.
They are made of stretchy and breathable material and seem to be quite good quality (we haven’t tried them ourselves yet unfortunately). One great feature is the touch-screen compatibility, which makes it easier to use your dashboards or the phone without taking them off every time.
Nice option: you can customise them with your own logo for only 7,5€ (one image) or 10€ (two images)
Made by Imb Racewear, they distinguish themselves by the lenght which is replicating real racing gloves, with a longer fit.
What is awesome is that you can fully customise the design (colours, logos, text, etc) and have your own unique design. Production will take 6-8 weeks so you’ll have to wait a little bit more but it might be worth it.
FREM SIM21 GLOVES – 55€
Frem has a good history of developing gloves and the 21 is the successor of the 20 which was already quite well know.
They are 100% made in Italy and feature a design tailored at the need of sim racers with perspiration and longevity in mind. They are also compatible with touchscreens. According to freem , with only 32g they are the lightest gloves on the market
You can also find the track racer design here for 55€ here https://trakracer.eu/products/freem-trak-racer-sim-racing-gloves
TUATARA SIM RACE GLOVES – 45€
With their gaming inspired design, these gloves promise you to keep you comfortable for hours of sim racing. Extra grip is granted by durable leather in the palms area.
You can pick between 4 different designs.
FAQ – Frequently asked questions
Why do sim racers need gloves?
For a few reasons:
1- have better grip and comfort during long sessions
2- protect their expensive sim racing wheel
3- immersion and simulation effect
Can you use real racing gloves for sim racing?
Of course you can, but generally you don’t need fireproof gloves for it. Also, most sim racing gloves have touchscreen ready fingers that help you interact with your screen, dash, phone, etc