In Memory of Ryuji Urabe: The 93-Year-Old Sim Racer Who Inspired the World

In a world where technology continues to evolve at a rapid pace, it’s truly fascinating to witness the ways in which it touches the lives of people from all walks of life. One such remarkable story comes from Japan, where a 93-year-old man had found a new lease on life through the power of virtual racing.


Meet Ryuji Urabe, who was a former Tokyo taxi driver and, despite having retired from the roads, longed to experience the thrill of driving once again. Thanks to modern advancements, Urabe’s story took an unexpected turn as he embarked on a journey into the world of virtual racing, captivating audiences worldwide with his newfound passion.


Urabe’sThe Life of Ryuji Urabe: From Taxi Driver to Virtual Racer


Ryuji Urabe’s journey into virtual racing is rooted in his deep-seated love for automobiles, cultivated over a lifetime spent behind the wheel. As a young man, Urabe navigated the bustling streets of Tokyo as a taxi driver during the 1960s, experiencing firsthand the exhilaration of the open road.





Despite the passage of time, Urabe’s affinity for driving never waned. In the ’90s, he transitioned to a new role as a garbage truck driver, continuing to embrace the rhythm of life on the road. However, as age caught up with him and physical limitations set in, Urabe was forced to surrender his driver’s license, marking the end of an era.


Urabe’sJourney to Sim Racing


But where one chapter ends, another begins. Enter Urabe’s grandson, Koutarou Yamamoto, who recognized his grandfather’s longing to once again experience the thrill of driving. Armed with a steering wheel controller and a passion for gaming, Yamamoto introduced Urabe to the world of virtual racing.





Sim Racing proved to be the perfect solution, offering Urabe a lifelike experience behind the wheel without ever leaving the comfort of his home. With each race, Urabe rediscovered the joy of driving, his skills as sharp as ever despite his advanced age.


From Tokyo to YouTube


Encouraged by his grandson, Yamamoto began sharing videos of Urabe’s races on YouTube, showcasing his grandfather’s remarkable talent to the world. What started as a simple pastime soon blossomed into a full-fledged online sensation.





With over 20,000 subscribers and counting, Urabe’s YouTube channel had become a hub for simracers, drawn to the authenticity and charm of this elderly driver’s journey. His story serves as a testament to the power of technology to connect people across generations and continents.


The Impact and Legacy of Ryuji Urabe


Beyond the realm of virtual racing, Ryuji Urabe’s story holds deeper significance. It speaks to the resilience of the human spirit and the enduring power of passion to transcend limitations. Urabe’s unwavering determination to pursue his love for driving serves as an inspiration to us all, reminding us that age is no barrier to following our dreams.


As we reflect on Urabe’s journey, let us also consider the broader implications of his story. In a world where technological advancements often dominate headlines, Urabe’s tale serves as a poignant reminder of the ways in which technology can enrich and enhance our lives, bringing joy and fulfillment to even the most unexpected places.