The iRacing Off-Road Championship Series roars back to life on Wednesday night, as 24 of the world’s top off-road sim racers strap back into their virtual Pro 4 trucks for a visit to Wild West Motorsports Park. Race coverage begins at 8PM ET across iRacing social media channels with this year’s All-Stars, while the top sim racers will begin their quest for a $25,000 championship purse at 9PM ET.
Last Season: After one of the most impressive championship battles in iRacing history, Connor Barry edged out Keaton Swane for the inaugural title. Barry posted 14 top-fives in 16 starts, while Swane finished every race in the top 10 among the 24-truck field. Eight different drivers scored race wins in 2022, led by Cam Pedersen’s four, while 14 took at least one podium finish.
Rule Changes: Five rookies will take to the grid this season, headlined by current NASCAR Xfinity Series driver and former eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series driver Parker Retzlaff. They’ll join the 19 returning drivers in taking on iRacing’s refreshed dirt model, which was released in time for 2023 Season 3 and the start of the new campaign. The eight-truck invert at the front of the field will only happen before the second feature for 2023, aligning the rules package with another iRacing pro series, the Porsche TAG Heuer Esports Supercup. Finally, under a new numbering system, returning drivers will carry their points position from last year as their race number for 2023, while rookies will use numbers 25 and forward.
All-Stars: This year’s lineup of All-Star racers will continue to feature a mix of top sim racers from other iRacing pro series, popular streamers, and real-world pros. The All-Stars will start with four weeks of Pro 2 Lite racing, followed by five weeks of Pro 4 events. In addition, separate titles will be awarded for Pro eSports and Celebrity divisions, with drivers grouped based on sim racing experience and performance but everyone competing on track at the same time. The Pro eSports class will be headlined by last year’s top title contenders Luke Knupp and Zac Drapkin and eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series drivers, and will be noted by yellow number plates (instead of the usual white).
Track Facts: Prior to its closure, Nevada’s Wild West Motorsports Park put on some of the best short course off-road racing in the southwest. Carved into the side of a mountain, the 1.5-mile track features the biggest jump of the season just after its start-finish line. The track was also added to iRacing’s base content package for 2023 Season 1, making it free to play for all users.
Next Up: Following Wild West, the iRacing Off-Road Championship Series will head to Crandon International Raceway on Wednesday, July 5. “The Big House” will be the only track to host the Off-Road Championship Series three times in 2023, including a midseason exhibition event featuring the Pro 2 truck.
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