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April 2014

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The Team

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  • David Phillips
    Editor And Chief
    David Phillips is a long-time contributor to print and electronic publications in the U.S. and abroad, including Racer, Autosport, AutoWeek, Motor Sport and SPEEDtv.com, oversees the daily updating of news stories and assigns, edits and contributes feature material for inRacingNews.com.
  • David Judson
    Contributor

    29 years old, Dave Judson lives in Mentor, Ohio. Dave has grown up with racing, watching his father win races and championships at the local go-kart track as a youngster and continuing his love of racing while watching NASCAR, Indycar, Formula 1 and sports cars.
    Judson has enjoyed a successful sim-racing career of his own in the IZOD Indycar iRacing Open and Fixed Setup Series. He has race wins to his credits as well as the Division 1 Championship of the Open Series in Season 1 of 2013 and the Overall Championship of the Fixed Series in Season 3 of 2013.
    Dave has a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Cleveland State University and is looking to expand his horizons by writing for inRacingNews.

  • Matt A Kingsbury
    Contributor

    Kingsbury lives in Fairfield, Connecticut where he currently attends Sacred Heart University. He is a fan of any form of racing, from NASCAR to IndyCar, Formula 1, and especially endurance racing. The summer of 2013 saw Kingsbury attend IndyCar's return to Pocono Raceway as well as the ARCA race at Pocono which Corey Lajoie won and got some pictures (including the accompanying mug shot) in Victory Lane thanks to his aunt!

  • Raymond Kingsbury
    Contributor

    Ray Kingsbury is a motorsport enthusiast and full-time university student, born and raised in Connecticut. He started his own racing career in BMX, riding bicycles competitively on the state level. In eight years he claimed the state championship and was ranked nationally before moving away from the sport. This void of activities led him to rediscover sim-racing in the form of NASCAR Heat. After a championship in the game's most competitive league Kingsbury started focusing full-time on his involvement in Live for Speed. There he founded Last Lap Motorsports which today has more than 20 members worldwide.

    When a few Last Lap Motorsports members decided to give iRacing.com a chance to feed their desire for more oval racing, Ray teamed with his brother Matt, Nathan Lamothe and newcomer Jimmie Jones to enter the ETV! Live Team Series and claimed the title after a dominating performance at Watkins Glen. To this day the team continues in both Live for Speed and iRacing.com and Ray still takes much delight in his own sim-racing career. A reporter for his high school newspaper before moving to university, Kingsbury keeps-up his writing activities by contributing to iRacing News.

  • Jeff Jacobs
    Contributor

    Jeff Jacobs started autocrossing with the SCCA in 1990 while a student at the University of Florida. He has competed in the SCCA's National Tour and ProSolo series since 1995, winning a ProSolo National Championship in H-Stock in 2011 driving a 2010 MINI Cooper. Jeff completed his SCCA Club Racing drivers' school in 2012 at Roebling Road in a Spec Miata. He currently writes a column for the SCCA's Northeast Division in SportsCar Magazine and is the Region Executive of the Philadelphia Region SCCA.

    Jeff joined iRacing in October 2012. After starting with the MX-5 and SRF cars, he has been concentrating on the Ford Mustang FR500S, competing in the iRacing.com Mustang Cup series and the Continental Endurance Sports Car Series.

  • Jordan Hightower
    Contributor

    Jordan began sim-racing in 2005 with the NASCAR Racing 2003 Season sim and then joined the iRacing community in June of 2008. He hails from Fort Smith, Arkansas where he is currently enrolled at the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, after which he plans to attend the University of Arkansas to earn his MBA. Although he enjoys watching and playing basketball, most of Jordan's focus is on motorsports, particularly NASCAR: "Anything that burns gas and goes fast, I like."

  • Scott Kelly
    Contributor

    Born and raised in the greater St. Louis, Missouri area, Scott Kelly has had a love for motorsports ever since his father did the right thing by introducing auto racing into his life. No longer able to quench his need for speed by spectating NASCAR races on TV and watching dirt track stars slide around local tracks, Kelly eventually picked-up sim racing in his teens, wheeling cars found in Ratbag Games' "Dirt Track Racing" and "World of Outlaws: Sprint Cars" while also becoming introduced into multiple Papyrus sim-racing series. Joining the iRacing ranks in late 2011, Kelly set his sights on the short track racing he was familiar with, focusing on the sprint car, while also driving the Legends and street stock in multiple iRacing.com leagues.

    Kelly brings not just his enthusiasm for racing to the highest-rated motorsports simulation, but also his B.A. degree in English; he covers the action seen in the iRacing.com Sprint Car Series, while also placing the spotlight on various leagues within the service. Enjoying his start to a career in motorsports journalism, Kelly also doesn't mind visiting victory lane from time-to-time.

  • George Wood
    Contributing Writer
    After beginning his racing career with go-karts at age seven, George then turned wrenches on street stocks until he could finally turn the wheel. Following the successes of his friends and family, George has since retired from real-world racing, where he is now a science and mathematics faculty member for several local community colleges. When George isn't grading laboratory reports or iRacing, he is performing at bluegrass festivals in the Northeast, making fishing lures, playing golf, and rooting for his beloved Baltimore Orioles.
  • Chris Hall
    iRacing.com Series Writer
    Chris Hall has been writing since the nineties and moved into motorsports reporting in 2005, covering series such as ALMS, British GT, FIA GT, Le Mans and 2CV racing for Full Throttle magazine, Motorsport.com, The-Paddock.net, GTGateway.com, L' Endurance and, of course, inRacingNews. During 2008 and 2009, he worked with the RSS Performance Porsche Carrera Cup Team (and former British GT(C) champions) as a data engineer for a variety of drivers and models of 997s.
  • Jason Lofing
    iRacing.com Series Writer
    Jason is 21 years old and was born and raised in Elk Grove. California. A big time NASCAR fan, he hasn’t missed a race on Sunday in years. Lofing is also a huge San Fransisco Giants fan and tries to take in at least a couple games a year. Other than sim racing, his biggest (and far more expensive!) hobby is photography. Although he is rather new to sim racing, Lofing has already accomplished some pretty impressive results, qualifying for the 2011 iRacing Oval Pro Series in Season 1, 2011, winning the inaugural Landon Cassill Qualifying Challenge and finishing runner-up in the second one.
  • Dylan Sharman
    Contributing Writer
    I was born in Adelaide and we moved-out for Angle Vale for a few years until I was about 7 years old, when we moved to the Barossa Valley where I live now. I'm 19 years old and currently traveling back and forth weekly as I'm studying for a Diploma of Furniture Design and Technology.

    I've always had a love for racing as my close family did some racing and we were always out at the local dirt track. I joined iRacing back in 2010 and slowly but surely got the hang of it as this is my first experience with sim racing and am loving it each time I race. I've won two SK Modified titles (almost had three in a row but finished P2 in 2011 S4), an iRacingNews Challenge championship (2012 S1 Mazda) and was also an AustralAsian Intel GT Series Finalist.
  • Katier Scott
    Contributing Writer
    I am a veteran sim racer who first started racing way back in 1993 on the SPRTSIMS section of Compuserve with a league who can trace themselves all the way to the present. Within that league I act as Chief Steward and try to bring the unique viewpoint that this experience gives me into my articles.
    I have a BA (Hons) in Journalism and Editorial design and have been writing for seven years and currently cover the Lotus 79 CTC and Radical series alongside my freelance work. Living in the UK, as well as motorsports I love Photography, Arts and Crafts and reading.
  • David Ifeguni
    Contributing Writer
    I was born in New Haven, Connecticut in 1988 and moved to Midland, Michigan when I was two years old. I stayed there until third grade when I moved to Farmington Hills, Michigan and now I currently live in Naperville, IL where I'm attending Metea Valley High School as a 9th grader. In the past, I have participated in soccer and this year I plan on joining swimming or water polo. My family includes my 15 year old sister, a 7 year old sister and my mom and dad. I have been writing since 6th grade and have participated in many writing contests in my school and have received several awards for writing.
    My fascination for motorsports began when I was nine. The first NASCAR race I watched on TV was the 2009 Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway, won by Kasey Kahne. My favorite NASCAR drivers are Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr, and Jimmie Johnson. I have watched all the races in the NASCAR Sprint Cup, Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series since 2010. I currently have three wins on iRacing, two of them in the Nationwide car at Daytona and one in the Street stocks at Charlotte. My favorite car and type of track on iRacing is the Nationwide Series (B Class) car and superspeedways.

XCAL RoundUp

by Glen Alden on April 18th, 2014

62
XCAL RoundUp

With the season well underway, we bring you a round-up of the XCAL Racing action to date. -Ed Mark Arthur Wins Fast-Paced, XCAL Inaugural The flags flew and the suspense broke as XCAL’s inaugural season kicked off with its first race of the season at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The XCAL Trailer Made Brands Street Stocks took to the track for 250 laps around the 1.5 mile speedway in the full oval configuration. The many surprises during the speed-weeks leading up to race day began in the heats with Richard Hollyday winning the pole. XCAL’s interesting qualifying system is designed to having many different drivers winning poles throughout the season, and this was the proof in the pudding. Winning your heat with the fastest individual time gets you the number one [...]

iRacing Q&A: Customer Support

by David Phillips on April 18th, 2014

744
sim racing

Although iRacing.com is justifiably proud of its laser-scanned race tracks, digitally modeled race cars and sophisticated infrastructure, none of that would matter for long without the knowledge and guidance members have come to count on from iRacing’s Customer Support group. Together, Shannon Whitmore (Director of Competition and Support), Susan Flint (Customer Support Manager) and Angela Sinopoli (Customer Support Specialist) form iRacing’s Customer Support department.  The trio recently took a few moments to answer some commonly asked questions about their work . . . Q:  Why don’t we have 24/7 support? A:  We like to maintain a streamlined company and not incur any unnecessary expenses that we may need to pass along to our members. Also, the majority of emails and calls actually do come in during business hours. Additionally we [...]

Nothing Has Changed, and Nothing is the Same: F1 in 2014

by Justin Sutton on April 18th, 2014

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Nothing Has Changed, and Nothing is the Same: F1 in 2014

The 2014 Formula 1 season has been steeped in drama since long before the cold, wet weekend in Australia ever began.  Pessimists and naysayers had been dismissing the radical changes and not one championship point had been given out (some such pessimists are from Italy and have red cars with horses on them).  F1 is known for pushing boundaries, but how exciting is it when the boundaries are fuel conservation and efficiency coupled with a safety standard unrivaled in the sport?  No longer is lap time the ultimate measure of a race winner, and gone are the days of racing dozens of qualifying laps in a row.  The whole thing has been turned upside down and yet the racing is as good, or better, than it has been in recent [...]

World Cup 2014 – Preview

by Mike Ouellette on April 18th, 2014

186
sim racing

Sim-racing is an intensely individual sport and the opportunities to share success or failure as a team are few. The World Cup as THE premier event for clubs is the biggest and best chance for racers to compete for something greater than themselves. Club DE-AT-CH has sipped from the fountain of success four times and are the reigning World Cup of iRacing Champions. As they seek a fifth title there are a number of teams who look to dethrone them; from past champion Finland to Brasil to perennial contenders UK&I, there is no shortage of clubs capable of tasting victory… but are they hungry enough for it? As the 2014 season is about to kick off on April 19th, there are a few notable changes to the competition. First, a [...]

Week 13 SRF Big Grid Race Heads to the Glen

by Samuel Reiman on April 18th, 2014

117
It'll be tough to top last season's Week 13 Big Grid finish at Road America.

Nothing more could have been asked of the drivers who took place in the first two SRF Week 13 Big Grid races at Road America. Having 60 cars in each race made for plenty of battles and incidents to keep the sim-racing interesting, and each race came down to a last lap battle for the lead amongst multiple cars. In the latest rendition, the race went all the way to the line where Niccolo Cedrati beat Kimo Suominen by 0.000 seconds, and only iRacing’s scoring systems and replay features could truly tell us who’d won. Well if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.  Yet one can’t blame race organizer Luca Varani for changing the venue. We’ve already seen, arguably, the greatest race and closest finish that we’re ever going to [...]

Cooke’s Iowa Win Clinches IndyCar Crown

by Seth Eggert on April 18th, 2014

50
Racing Simulation

Week Eleven of the 2014 Season 1 iRacing.com IndyCar Oval Series sent the series to Iowa Speedway. Only 43 drivers participated in a week of sim-racing where story of the week was the ability to keep up with the front runners. Ron Meier Jr. (Midwest) started on pole with Matt A. Kingsbury (Connecticut) on his outside. Matt Cooke (Canada) qualified on the inside of Row Two with Rob Unglenieks (Michigan) in fourth and Connor Cross (Ohio) rounding out the top five starting positions. Meier had an excellent start, gapping Kingsbury by a handful of car lengths. Kingsbury slowly caught up, until Cooke got around him for second. Kingsbury struggled to keep up with the two front runners as they pulled away, leaving him behind with Cross several more car lengths [...]

A Three “Crown” Race

by Brooks Westfall on April 17th, 2014

65
It all comes down to Homestead as Buchberger, Sansone, and Williams, all have a shot to take the championship.

The finale of Season One is upon us, and the iRacing Silver Crown Cup has one of the tightest point battles of any series heading into the final week. Vinnie Sansone and Paul Williams have come within 39 points of series leader Brandon Buchberger ahead of the finale, set for the virtual plains of Homestead-Miami this Thursday. After a dramatic and controversial race at New Hampshire last week, Buchberger has lost tremendous and valuable points. Last Thursday’s race was worthy of a conversation or two, as drivers encountered a variety of “challenges” throughout the sim race. The most notable was a bump in Turn One, causing racers to lose control of their ‘Crowns, spinning, and collecting others. Drivers such as  Brian Elmore, Brooks Westfall, and points leader Brandon Buchberger encountered [...]

Hudson Tames Darlington

by Tom O'Leary on April 17th, 2014

226
The Lady in Black hosted Round of tthe 2013 NASCAR iRacing Series.

Darlington Raceway welcomed the sim-racers of the NASCAR iRacing Series for Week 8 of the open and fixed championships.  Call it “The Lady in Black” or “The Track Too Touch to Tame,” Darlington has become a popular track in this series due to it being one of the toughest racetracks of NASCAR, with many of the greats earning multiple wins here in real life – including Dale Earnhardt Sr. winning an amazing 10 times. The egg–shaped oval provides a test for sim-racers in terms of driving skill and technical setup, with both being crucial to gaining good points at Darlington. In the first of the Fixed online races this week NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series drivers made their respective ways to the front of the field, with Ray Alfalla taking the [...]

Matta Wins at Martinsville – iRacing Brasil League

by Thiago Izequiel on April 16th, 2014

83
Matta wins his 2nd race with a paint remembering his father.

Versão em português abaixo iRacing Brasil’s NASCAR Pro Series is coming to a conclusion – but yet, nothing is defined. Anderson Paes has been leading the point standings since Race Three, doing a great campaign. But he is always followed very closely by Igor Kops, Luis Piccolo, Alysson Pereira and JC Nóbrega. With two more races to go, it’s not easy to guess who’s going to be the next champion of this very popular series in the Brazilian league iRacing Brasil. The eight race of the season took place at Martinsville Speedway. With a good field size of 28 participants, the half-mile track had 14 caution flags, and drivers had to watch their backs to come out in one piece after 180 laps. Paes had the pole, his fourth of [...]

Kops’ Third Win; Paes’ Lead at iRacing Brasil

by Thiago Izequiel on April 16th, 2014

44
Kops became the driver to win most times at Nascar Pro Series.

Versão em português abaixo NASCAR Pro Series at iRacing Brasil had its ninth race on April 7th. Now, with only April 14th’s final race, Anderson Paes will come as the favorite driver to win the championship. With a 339 points lead, he has a minor advantage against Igor Kops, who has 327 points in second place. This means that, even if Kops can earn his fourth win, becoming the driver with most victories at this season, Paes would need to finish on the top 10 to grab the cup. But with so many kinds of bonus points, things could change. A participant of this series can receive bonus points by finishing the race, finishing without incidents, leading one or more laps, leading the most number of laps and winning. So [...]

Road Warriors Silverstone

by Andrew Pinkerton on April 16th, 2014

260
Road Warriors Silverstone 1 Jens leads into t1 (2)

For Round Four of  iRacing.com’s Road Warrior Series we hop the pond and head to the quaint English village of Silverstone. The town’s 2,000 or so residents used to hear the thunder of mighty Rolls-Royce engines in the Vickers Wellington bombers. Now, nearly 70 years on, those roars have not ceased, but rather have been replaced by sound of virtual Corvettes, McLarens, and HPDs. Sit down and buckle up for the 60 minute Endurance Challenge from the Silverstone Grand Prix Circuit. The Saturday 1:00 GMT race kicked-off the weekend with a total of 33 starters. The race would run 38 laps within the hour allotted. This was just barely the third highest SOF tops split coming in at 3136. The HPD field had 11 starters with some very familiar names, [...]

Plenty to Play for in Penultimate Race

by Justin Sutton on April 16th, 2014

91
Maycock v. Lambert and Rabsztyn v. Swirydowicz

With the championship already in Marc Mercer’s pocket the UK&I Skippies headed to Sonoma Raceway for the penultimate round of the first 2014 season.  Following Blake Townend’s DNF last time out, the battle for “best of the rest” was still very much in play, with only eight points separating Townend from Wojciech Swirydowicz (in Woj’s favor).  Marcus Hamilton was in fourth (and highest scoring driver who had yet to win a race) and within a mathematical chance of snatching second, as well as multiple race winner George Streetley.  A little farther down and you’ll find a four-way battle for sixth as Jonathan Maycock, Tom Ward, Stuart Adcock, and Rob Green were separated by only 11 points. In qualifying Mercer held provisional pole for a while before Townend stamped his authority [...]

GT3 Challenge Week 11 Recap

by Paul Slavonik on April 16th, 2014

168
Motorsport Simulation

As we enter the final racing week of the iRacing.com GT3 Challenge debut season, let’s have a quick rundown on the action which took place at Phillip Island for Week 11. Italian driver Mario Bertolotti made his presence known when he completed the hat trick with his dominating performance during the Australian Strength-of-Field (SoF) race. After taking pole position, Bertolotti won the race with a 7.5 second margin over runner-up Bruno Barbugli, and also set the fastest lap time of 1:26.560. In addition to his hat trick performance, Bertolotti also finished the race cleanly by not acquiring a single incident point. Tony Autridge  completed the podium after he starting P6 and moving through the field to finish in third. There were plenty of movers and shakers in this online race [...]

Southern Fried NASCAR

by Jordan Hightower on April 16th, 2014

88
Week 10 Darlington P1

The NASCAR iRacing Class C Fixed Series approaches the conclusion of Season One with a tight battle shaping up for the championship. After spending Week Nine at Martinsville Speedway, 3,522 sim racers made the virtual trip to Darlington Raceway and Atlanta Motor Speedway for the tenth and eleventh weeks of action in the series. Darlington (Top Strength of Field) Under clear skies, with temperatures in the mid-70s, NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series competitor Brandon Kettelle (Florida) drove his No. 3 Chevrolet Silverado into Darlington’s famed victory lane. After starting from the third spot and leading just six laps in the event, Kettelle was able to hold off fellow NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series competitor Josh Berry (Mid-South) to take the victory by just 0.347 seconds. Berry was able to lead seven laps [...]

Behind the Scenes – NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series – Texas Motor Speedway

by Matt Holden on April 15th, 2014

191
Tyler Hudson (#01) and Nick Ottinger (#05) make contact

Let’s face it:  There are some who have been waiting a week for this article to hit the website.  I, on the other hand, have actively avoided writing it because revisiting last week’s race seems like a step backwards, nothing that would provide any kind of progress towards the next race.  However, this is easily a way to close the door on an “event” that most of us have forgotten about already. I knew we were in for a long race when Nick left Turn 2 on the opening lap.  He said just two words before trying to settle into a rhythm:  “We tight.”  He’s very good about waiting for a car to evolve throughout a run, and as a result can immediately tell if the car is going to [...]

iRacers at Long Beach

by David Phillips on April 14th, 2014

194
iRacers

Ten lucky iRacers from as far away as Chicago and Salt Lake City enjoyed a special tour of the Target/Chip Ganassi Racing paddock area on Saturday afternoon at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.   The first to respond to a post on the iRacing forums, the iRacers got an inside look at the TCGR operations including a guided tour of the team’s transporters and paddock work area hosted by TCGR vice president of communication John Olguin.  Our thanks to Target/Chip Ganassi Racing for their hospitality!

Get to Know: Jake Hayes

by David Ifeguni on April 14th, 2014

80
Hayes

From Commerce, Georgia, iRacer Jake Hayes has not even celebrated his one year anniversary on iRacing. Although he only joined iRacing in June of 2013, he has already started 344 oval races and 212 road races, and has recorded 14 and 19 victories respectively. On ovals, he got his first career win on his second day as an iRacer, in the iRacing Street Stock series at USA International Speedway. Twelve days later, he went to victory lane for the first time on a road course at Summit Point Raceway in the iRacing Mazda Cup Series. Although he has more victories on road courses than ovals, he primarily races on ovals, with an iRating of 3578. There is more to Jake Hayes than meets the eye and you can learn more [...]

Pahkala Leads Finns’ Road America Domination

by Wil Vincent on April 14th, 2014

446
Luis and Huttuka got off to the better starts, but Pahkala was in front when it counted.

The 2014 iRacing.com World Championship Grand Prix Series rolled into Road America in a state of flux. The four mile race track in Elkhart Lake, WI has traditionally been Team Redline driver and three-time series champion Greger Huttu’s playground, and he was hoping to reignite his championship charge after a tough start to the season.  Meanwhile Foracer 3id Motorsports’ Hugo Luis – the only man to ever beat Huttu to an iWCGPS title — was leading the championship, new contenders in the form of Glacier Racing‘s Aleksi Uusi-Jaakkola and Olli Pahkala were the centre point for attention . . . and Foracer 3id Motorsports’ Martin Krönke quietly sat second in the standings. As always, before drivers go racing, they have to qualify, and the 15 minute session saw provisional pole [...]

Peterson Goes 3-Wide to Win at Thompson

by Stan Bragg Jr on April 14th, 2014

95
ScreenHunter_01 Apr. 14 12.28

Week 11 of the NASCAR iRacing.com Super Late Model Series traveled east to Thompson Connecticut to race at this tight 0.625 mile track. With 26 degrees of banking, a high groove that’s the only fast way around and a handling-nightmare of a bottom groove that sees cars pushing up in the center and killing exit speed, the track was a challenge to say the least.  Of the 18 sim-racers who took the green flag, only 10 would actually cross the start/finish line when the checkered flag dropped, with just a handful on the lead lap. In the 1904 Strength of Field race Scott Howell led the field to the green with Chad Peterson to his outside, but b y the time they came back around to the start/finish line the [...]

SuperGT Season 2 at BLMS Ends

by Thiago Izequiel on April 14th, 2014

93
These guys took home a very good looking trophy.

Versão em português abaixo The ride is over. After two months of championship sim-racing, five online races done bi-weekly, and hours of hosted sessions, we already knew the champion Renato Silva.  But there was still one race to go, on April 9. Only after Bathurst, Mt. Panorama,would we know the whole story of SuperGT. Renato Silva had dominated the series, winning the title one race before the end, with four victories, five pole-positions and three fastest laps. The only race that Renato would not make the pole position, would be this final one, achieved by Andrew Lauret who, in contrast, earned his first pole of the series. Andrew is also the only driver who had won a race besides Renato, and things would keep that way. Having the pole, Andrew [...]