How iRacing & eSports Are Helping Race Fans

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Race fans, such as myself, were very bummed when the racing season has pretty much been cancelled or postponed because of this pandemic. We really wanted to see cars racing every week if it’s in NASCAR, IndyCar, or even Formula 1. We still want to see cars on track more than ever still to this day. We didn’t know at the time if we would even see races during the pandemic, but we are because of one simple platform and that platform is called iRacing.

iRacing is a subscription-based racing simulation online video game developed and published by iRacing.com Motorsport Simulations in 2008. All races and practice sessions are hosted on the service’s servers. The game simulates real world cars, tracks, and racing events, and enforcing rules of conduct modeled on real auto racing events. We get to see the NASCAR Cup Series and NTT IndyCar Series race every week because of iRacing. When we race fans learned that NASCAR and IndyCar were going to be racing on iRacing during this time, we were all excited to get to see the racing season continue virtually. NASCAR and IndyCar decided that it didn’t want to be just an iRacing race with the best iRacers in the world. They decided that they wanted their real drivers racing every single week so we can get to cheer on our favorite drivers.

The NASCAR Cup Series was the first series to take an initiative to racing on iRacing. They decided to do the races as scheduled on racing after the postponement of both Atlanta and Homestead races. The series had one week off and then decided to start an iRacing series with its star lineup of drivers to race at Homestead the next week. We NASCAR fans were super excited because we actually get to see some new racing, and we don’t have to watch old races on YouTube or play the official NASCAR video game, NASCAR Heat 4, to have racing entertainment while the series is away. The eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series has been pretty exciting so far. We have seen amazing races, new winners, old winners, and much more. One of the best things about this series is that the drivers that actually drive on iRacing frequently are actually racing up front most of the time. Those drivers who race iRacing frequently are drivers who aren’t usually at the front in the NASCAR Cup Series in the real world. The eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series has brought a new way to bring races to fans and to help us get some new action during this weird time.

The NTT IndyCar Series picked on NASCAR’s trend of using iRacing the next week after NASCAR’s first iRace. IndyCar did the same thing to let their real world drivers race against each other. The series didn’t just let their own drivers race, they have let some NASCAR drivers race as well. Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson raced the first two races at Watkins Glen and Barber, Dale Earnhardt Jr. raced at Michigan last week, and two-time and defending NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Busch will be racing this weekend at Twin-Ring Motegi. We IndyCar fans were so excited that we got to see our favorite drivers race at tracks that we don’t go to anymore or tracks that we’ve never raced on. The IndyCar iRacing Challenge has been pretty good so far. We’ve seen new winners as well as drivers who aren’t usually up front. IndyCar has done a great job so far with iRacing and I can’t wait to see where the rest of the season goes.

The eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series and the IndyCar iRacing Challenge have made racing accessible to us during this pandemic. It has provided exciting racing and things that we normally don’t see. Even though us racing fans still want to see cars out on track in the real world, at least we get to see it virtually. Watch the next race of the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series this Sunday at Richmond Raceway at 1 P.M. EST on Fox Sports 1. Also watch the next race for the IndyCar iRacing Challenge this Saturday at Twin-Ring Motegi at 2:30 P.M. EST on NBCSN.

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