NASCAR and iRacing will send three teams of top NASCAR stars to the virtual Daytona International Speedway Road Course to conquer the new layout, just in time for stock-car racing’s debut at the track. Hosted by Daytona 500-winning crew chief and NBC Sports analyst Steve Letarte, drivers William Byron, Chase Briscoe and Ty Majeski will participate in iRacing Happy Hour, streaming live on NASCAR.com Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET.
The unique and unprecedented event, sponsored by Coca-Cola, will give teams their first look at the Daytona’s newest road-course layout, which adds a brand new chicane heading into the tri-oval. With all three of NASCAR’s national series making their debut on the Daytona Road Course with their respective races, all three teams will spend 60 minutes on track, approaching the session like their first real-world practice session of a typical race weekend. Each driver will work with a member of his real-world race team and an eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series driver as engineer to get the most out of the track time.
The iRacing Happy Hour team lineups are as follows:
|Cup Series||William Byron||Chad Knaus||Nick Ottinger|
|Xfinity Series||Chase Briscoe||DJ Vanderley||Justin Bolton|
|Gander Truck Series||Ty Majeski||Phil Gould||Keegan Leahy|
iRacers will have their own opportunity to get into the action with a special set of time trials running through Tuesday night with all three vehicles. The fastest driver in each class will receive a prize from iRacing and NASCAR, while the top times from each class will be used as a benchmark for each real-world driver during iRacing Happy Hour. The prizes for the top time trial finishers will be determined by how well Byron, Briscoe and Majeski perform on the track.
The real-world driver who comes closest to his series’ fastest time trial lap or beats it by the largest margin will earn the series’ top time trial finisher $1,000 in iRacing credits and two tickets to the 2021 Daytona 500. The real-world driver who comes second closest will earn that series’ top time trial finisher $500 in iRacing credits and a $100 NASCAR Shop gift card, while the remaining time trial winner will earn $250 in iRacing credits and a $50 NASCAR Shop gift card. In addition, donations of $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000 will be made in the same finishing order to charities of each team’s choice.
“Our long-standing partnership with iRacing has never been as important as it’s been this year,” said Tim Clark, NASCAR’s senior vice president and chief digital officer. “With each challenge we’ve faced, iRacing has been right there with us providing its incredible technology as a tool for our entire industry. This initiative is a great example of our continued collaboration and will provide great value for our drivers and fans.”
During iRacing Happy Hour, fans will be able to interact with @NASCAR on Twitter to feed Letarte and Smith questions for the three participating teams. Fans will also be able to see into the virtual garages as Ottinger, Bolton and Leahy make the changes to the respective vehicles in hopes of getting the most out of the car — and giving their driver the best chance to succeed in the real world.
iRacing Happy Hour joins the eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series as the second of two premier iRacing events on the Daytona Road Course during the week. The eNASCAR round will air Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on eNASCAR.com/live and iRacing.com/live, and it will give fans a first look at how the Daytona Road Course should look with NASCAR Cup Series cars hitting the track. The NASCAR Xfinity Series hits the track for real Aug. 15, while the NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series and NASCAR Cup Series will run a doubleheader Aug. 16.
For more information on iRacing and for special offers, visit www.iracing.com