Just in case anyone is confused, no the race you watched or maybe saw highlights from yesterday was not a real race. It was essentially a video game. A company called iRacing digitally scans race tracks and hosts online sessions for people at home on computers to be able to race each other.
It’s a lot of fun for anyone whose a big fan of video games and racing and some genius people capitalized on the idea of all these NASCAR drivers having their Sunday’s freed up. This gives everyone stuck in their house something NASCAR related to enjoy.
This was treated as a legitimate NASCAR sanctioned event and while it had its odd moments, the end result was amazing.
The race itself had some funny lows and fun highs. At it’s worst it was a crash fest of hilarious proportions since you watched some of the best drivers in the world cause cautions that if you saw in real life you’d think that they had never driven a car before. Jimmie Johnson caused what might’ve been the funniest things NASCAR related I’ve watched in years, only further highlighted by Clint Bowyer commentary. The 100 lap race was slowed down by some silly cautions like this, but in the end, it was entertaining enough to not be a major con to the event as a whole.
In the end, we got to see some names like Timmy Hill and Garrett Smithley show that they do have talent behind a wheel, whether it be real or virtual. It was refreshing to see a few new names ahead of the big dogs.
The greatest part was seeing Dale Earnhardt Jr. being the class of the field all day and running for the lead in the end. Unfortunately a patient Denny Hamlin struck on the last lap and created an exciting finish even compared to real racing.
Hamlin pledged $5,000 to Covid-19 relief in South Florida if he won. I’m not going to start any theories, but there’s a chance Jr. might’ve given him one this time. Either way, it was well worth a race fans’ time.
There is talk of the drivers returning next week to race at Texas and they may continue to do this until actual racing returns. I’m far from against that idea.