NASCAR Cup Series drivers to enter iRacing esports series

Esports

Virtual racing stands in for cancelled events, as NASCAR and iRacing launch invitational series

NASCAR

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Top names from the NASCAR Cup Series will race head-to-head this weekend in the virtual world as part of a new iRacing pro series.

NASCAR has teamed up with simulation platform iRacing to create an invitational series that will fill the gap left by the postponed real-life season.

The exhibition-style invitational will include names from all three of NASCAR’s top three tiers, including the Cup, Xfinity and Truck Series’.

Drivers such as 2019 Cup Series champion Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson and Clint Bowyer will all be driving in the virtual world as part of the first race.

With the coronavirus pandemic leading to the postponement of the series until May 3, drivers will instead take to the virtual speedway, with the first race taking place this weekend.

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A virtual Homestead-Miami Speedway will host the first race in the invitational at 1:30pm ET (5.30pm GMT) on Sunday, with the remaining races set to be announced at a later date.

NASCAR’s vice president of racing development Ben Kennedy said that the situation was a great chance to offer fans an alternative while there is no racing happening on-track.

“Until we have cars back on track, the entire NASCAR community has aligned to provide our passionate fans with a unique, fun and competitive experience on race day,” he said.

“Our long-time partners at iRacing offer an incredible product, and we are excited to see how many of our best drivers will stack up in the virtual domain of competitive racing.”

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