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March 2015

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iRacing TV

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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.
  • Wil Vincent
    Contributing writer

    Wil is a 25 year old student, town planner, and sim racing commentator, most well known for his work as the lead commentator for GlacierTV. Wil got into commentating through his college student radio, where he also worked as a journalist and interviewer, covering gigs and festivals within the UK, and joined GlacierTV in February 2012, becoming lead commentator a month later. His work culminated in him commentating on the 2013 iRacing.com World Championship Grand Prix Series, iRacing Indy 500, and iRacing All Star Race. When he gets in the virtual cockpit, you'll normally see will taking on the thrill of IndyCar Oval racing, or trying his hand in GT action

    Outside of iRacing, Wil's an avid IndyCar fan, having watched the sport since the late 1990s, and always looks forward to the Month of May. He also enjoys watching NASCAR, Formula 1, and V8 Supercars.

  • 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.

  • Cam Stark
    contributing writer

    I began taking sim racing seriously about a year ago, but have loved motorsports from a young age. I began following Formula One first, then realized there are a huge variety of motorsports to watch. iRacing has opened my eyes even more to the diversity and volume of “real world” motorsports, let alone on the sim itself. With the huge varieties of series to choose from, you're spoiled for choice!

    Ever since I began iRacing, I wanted to improve on my ability, be it road or oval. Having not really heard about oval racing prior to November last year (blame the UK press), my mentality towards it has totally changed from what it would have initially been - it's awesome! I recently began road racing again - in the Star Mazda - and have been having a blast ever since. On top of racing the series I have the privilege of writing the articles for iRacing News.

    In all honesty I have surprised myself on iRacing. From being a fairly casual gamer/racer, it's been a world of difference, but it has far exceeded my expectations. I had a very brief stint driving in rFactor leagues, but I found my place of sim racing on this service, and I can't see myself stopping anytime soon.

  • Justin Sutton
    series contributor

    Justin is 29 and lives in Texas with his girlfriend and three dogs. Although always a fan of road racing growing up, Sutton never got the chance to participate in Sim-Racing until 2012 and didn't join iRacing until 2013. The son of a writer, and former resident of Connecticut and Philadelphia, his interests vary. Currently Sutton is a co-owner of YouTube channel focused on racing games and simulators and more specifically Formula One along with his partner Mikko from Finland (BoxBoxBoxGaming). Currently Sutton writes the Skip Barber F2000 and Lotus 49 articles (and the occasional F1 article) for iRacing News, and doesn't get nearly enough time to race the cars he writes about.

    Gaming is a big part of Sutton's life as well as he is both viewer and broadcaster on Twitch along with his girlfriend of seven years. In addition to being an aspiring writer he is a skilled speaker with a focus on commentary of races and hopes one day to do commentary for road racing of some kind.

  • Matt Holden
    Contributor

    Matt Holden began his involvement in motorsports at an early age, moving to Charlotte, NC when he was 6 months old. Growing up next door to a NASCAR TV personality, racing has always been a major part of his life. Currently studying Mechanical Engineering at UNC Charlotte, Matt works for US Legend Cars International as a technical inspector and race official at local tracks such as Charlotte Motor Speedway and Concord Speedway. Within iRacing, Matt is the Crew Chief for Gale Force Racing's #05 car in the NASCAR Peak Antifreeze Series, as well as Chassis Engineer for the team's R&D program.

  • Paul Slavonik
    iRacingNews Series Writer

    For all intents and purposes, Paul Slavonik was a late-bloomer to racing. Growing up watching NASCAR drivers such as Davey Allison and Earnhardt Sr. was the furthest extent of Paul’s racing aspirations at the time. Fast forwarding 20 years, Paul began watching the UK show Top Gear and thus ensued a fascination with all things fast. Soon after, Paul stumbled upon iRacing.com and has been hooked on racing ever since.
    A United States Army Veteran, Certified Audio Engineer and aspiring author, Paul spends his time hanging out with his wife and working on his first book. Currently residing in Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW), TX, his favorite racing series is the Australian V8 Supercars (go FPR!) and he has recently joined a local ChumpCar racing team. Paul began writing news stories for iRacingNews in January of 2014 and currently covers the GT3 Challenge Series and the V8 Supercars Series.

  • Thiago Izequiel
    Contributor

    Born in 1985 in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Thiago Izequiel is a graphic and web designer, go kart racer, aiming to get a career in motorsports. He started racing in 2007 and joined iRacing in 2010. Thiago lives in Maricá, a little town located in Rio de Janeiro state, around 60km far away from Rio de Janeiro city. In 2014 he started to write for iRacing News and also started to design layouts for racing cars.

    Working as a freelancer today, he started working as a designer in 2006. After a few years working in web design agencies, Thiago decided to follow his dreams and quit his job to work with a racing driver named Suzane Carvalho in 2011, on her driver's school. Things didn't worked out as expected and Thiago, after getting jobs as a front-end developer and social media content developer, went back to the dream path as a freelancer so he could have more time to focus on his driving career.

  • Jack Davidson
    Staff Videographer

    Jack is a recent grad from Boston University with a passion for filmmaking as well as racing. He grew up playing games such as the Need For Speed series, Gran Turismo, and more recently, the GRID and DIRT franchises.

  • 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.
  • 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.

Barber Hosts Penultimate Round Again

by Justin Sutton on March 18th, 2015

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Swirydowicz steals second at Turn Seven.

Barber Motorsports Park has produced some of the best races the UK&I Skip Barber League has seen in recent seasons, but has often suffered in attendance.  With a grid of over three dozen this season for the 15 lap race and with less than a quarter of a second between first and tenth in qualifying, the sim racing was guaranteed to be tight for this penultimate round.  Championship challenger Sebastian Job took pole ahead of Matthew Daniels, while championship leader Tom Ward was stuck in fourth behind Wojciech Swirydowicz. When the lights went green the top five maintained position into Turn One and through the completion of the opening lap.  In fact, the status quo remained in effect at the front for almost the entire first half of the race.  [...]

ineX Racing Masters of Endurance Champions

by Michael Booth on March 17th, 2015

222
Ibérica Racing Team leads the field towards Hell Corner at Bathurst.

Coanda Win Bathurst Masters of Endurance concluded its 2014/15 season with a visit down under for the 6 hours of Bathurst sponsored by iGPmanager.com. The 6.2km Mount Panorama circuit, famous for hosting V8 Supercars’ Bathurst 1000 and the 12 hour GT3 race, would provide a challenge for the teams of sim racers. With little runoff and walls lining the circuit across the Mountain, Bathurst offers no room for mistakes in corners resembling an undulating, high speed street circuit. Only two teams remained in contention for the championship after four rounds and 48 hours of racing. The odds were stacked heavily in ineX Racing’s favour thanks to their 56 point lead. Coanda Simsport needed to win the race and hope ineX finished lower than 17th in order to overcome the points [...]

NASCAR iRacing Series Diary: PIR

by James Falcon Pratt on March 16th, 2015

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NASCAR iRacing Series Diary: PIR

This week’s Fixed race was very messy. Why?  Well it seems that 156 lap races are too short for some drivers who feel they had to make it three wide on every restart. If you are fast the 156 laps should give you time to move through the field, or so one would think! I started in the top third of the field and with the yellows flying more than the greens I stayed out to avoid the mess in the center of the pack. This worked well and I ran as high as third at times. I would bring my nearly clean car home 10th and was very happy with that. In the Open, unlike the Fixed, I was set on the grid in the 27th spot. But as [...]

SRO, iRacing.com Announce Blancpain GT Sim Racing Series

by David Phillips on March 16th, 2015

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driving games

SRO Motorsports Group and iRacing.com today announced the creation of two online racing series for virtual sports cars that are based on the Blancpain Sprint Series and Blancpain Endurance Series.   The two series will feature iRacing’s digital GT3 cars, including the BMW Z4, Ford GT and McLaren MP4-12C (with Aston Martin and another major manufacturer expected in the future) in races from thirty minutes to three hours in duration. To celebrate this new partnership iRacing is offering a special 3-month membership for only $5 for new members – a more than 80% savings. New members can use promo code PR-SROMG at www.iracing.com when signing up. “We’re proud to have the SRO Motorsports Group as the first European-based racing series promoter in a group of iRacing partners that includes NASCAR, IndyCar [...]

Get to Know: Matthew O’Donnell

by David Ifeguni on March 16th, 2015

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racing games

Born in Horsham, PA and now living in Mission Viejo, CA, Matthew O’Donnell has come a long way in a short time on iRacing. He has won 92 times in 667 road course starts and has 14 official victories in 122 starts on ovals, yet he will only complete his second full year on the service on April 1st this year. It is undeniable that O’Donnell loves sim racing; earlier this year, he took his sim racing experience to a whole new level when he competed in the iRacing.com 24 Hours of Daytona on a team-of-one. He drove  the entire race by himself and ended-up completing all 24 hours. I got the chance to discuss the 24 hour endurance race with him, along with his other sim racing endeavours in [...]

Another IndyCar Season in the Books

by Seth Eggert on March 16th, 2015

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IndyCar Indy HiRes 1

The 2015 Season 1 iRacing.com IndyCar Oval Series featured a wide variety in racing as well as a wide range in participation and hard racing for the participating sim-racers during the 12 weeks of competition. A number of firsts also took place throughout the season. The series crowned yet another new champion, Nigel Marneef (Benelux). The series reached new heights in Strength of Field, including a new record Strength of Field of 4347 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The season featured attrition, close racing, domination, luck (both good and bad), shockers, and several strange moments, among other storylines. This season also saw the championship come down to the final ten laps of the Strength of Field race in the final week of the season. The series had the most participation [...]

Putting the Excitement Back in Restarts

by Paul Williams on March 13th, 2015

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video game

While last week’s NASCAR iRacing Series visit to the virtual Las Vegas Motor Speedway produced many splits and some great sim racing, there was an outcry from the community about the need for an overhaul when it comes to restarts in the Gen6 cars. “I have no problem overcoming adversity of my own doing. But, to have this black flag issue affect me 2 out of 3 races so far in NASCAR iRacing Series is getting old,” said Anthony Palombo. “Driving through the field is fun, but I only want to do it if I am back there on purpose or my own doing, not because of others handling on restart issues.” Unfortunately, it’s hard to imagine a reasonable scenario from the reactive side that could resolve the problem. Programming [...]

NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series: Manufacturer Points

by Dylan Kapisky on March 13th, 2015

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video games

Tuesday night, the NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series rolled into the virtual Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The 1.5 mile track was host to a mixed bag of great sim racing, from long green flag runs to  cautions within six laps of restarts. Kenny Humpe dominated the early part of the race, and it looked as if Chevrolet would pick-up their first victory of the season. But bad timing for Humpe on a caution put Nick Ottinger in the lead late, with Toyota in position to notch their first win of 2015. With only a handful of laps to go, Humpe and Ottinger were battling for the lead, when they made contact, sending Nick into the wall, while Humpe emerged in P1. Humpe would hold the lead on a “one lap shootout” [...]

Touch ‘n Go in Vegas

by Jake Hayes on March 13th, 2015

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LVMS Hayes 3

Week 2 of the NASCAR iRacing Series sent us west to another fast 1.5 miler: Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Vegas has never been my favorite track, and I failed to finish last year’s race with a blown engine. Despite not really liking the track, I’m pretty quick around the place, which means we could get our first top five of the season! Atlanta and Las Vegas may both be 1.5 mile tracks, but they share very few traits other than that. Vegas has nowhere near the amount of bumps of Atlanta, which makes tuning your car lots easier. Vegas also has a unique line in Turns 1-2 with the fastest line often being right in the middle of the track. This makes passes challenging and track position a factor in [...]

Emerson Takes V8SC S1 Title; McKnight Takes Season Finale

by Paul Slavonik on March 12th, 2015

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sim-racing

Wrapping-up what has been nothing short of a remarkable season which included 21 wins and 24 pole positions out of 25 starts, veteran iRacing.com V8 Supercars driver John Emerson of Team TTL claimed the Season 1 championship with 1890 points. A dominating force from the start, there were only a handful of drivers who were able to keep pace with Emerson throughout the season. One such driver was Beau Cubis who completed the season in second with 1817 points. Oftentimes fighting alongside Cubis was his former teammate, Ian Ford, who claimed the final step of the championship podium with Marlon McMullen and Tony Autridge rounding out the top-five. A win for Holden With Season 1 bringing the first ever Holden vs. Ford battles to iRacing, Emerson’s championship win also gives [...]

Behind the Scenes: The NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series powered by iRacing.com – New Build, Same Plan

by Matt Holden on March 12th, 2015

249
Clint Bowyer tested the Gen-6 Toyota Camry at Kansas in 2012, and unsurprisingly stayed close to a "COT" car through almost every run.

A few weeks ago, I had a chat with an old friend.  He’s an old “iRacing buddy” of mine, one of the big-wigs at the team I was part of before joining Gale Force Sim Racing.  The two of us are great examples of how iRacing has developed its own types of members, very similar to how the real world of motorsport works.  He is from the northern US, and Modified Stock Cars and weekly short-track racing is his deal.  I am from the Carolinas, where engineering, math, and wind-tunnels have taken over the world of NASCAR.  His iRacing vehicle of choice is obviously the Modifieds, and he calls the big stock cars “Taxi cabs.”  I, however, have no real vehicle of choice, and haven’t run anything on a week-to-week [...]

Humpe Wins Controversial Vegas

by Jason Lofing on March 11th, 2015

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Humpe took the win at Vegas under caution.

Kenny Humpe went to victory lane last night at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, his first win of the 2015 NASCAR PEAK Antifreeze Series Powered by iRacing. However, the win was not without controversy as Humpe made contact with Nick Ottinger while battling for the lead with just six laps remaining in the 167 lap event.  Ottinger had been leading since shortly after a restart on Lap 122 but Humpe had the better car and, as the laps wound down, began eating into Ottinger’s lead. Humpe caught Ottinger with nine laps to go and started sizing him up, knowing that passing at Las Vegas is challenging at best. Three laps later, Humpe pounced on a mistake by Ottinger in Turn Two and made his move to the inside as they headed [...]

Luza Hits the Jackpot

by Paul Williams on March 11th, 2015

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Luza won big in Vegas, the only double winner in NASCAR iRacing Series Open and Fixed competition.

This past weekend the NASCAR iRacing Series began its West Coast tour with a stop at Las Vegas Motor Speedway that saw Thursday night’s Open top split taken by Ryan Michael Luza, after passing Tyler Hudson with about 20 laps to go. “Passing TDH was much more difficult than I expected, and it took two laps around the bottom and a wiggle from Hudson to get by,” said Luza. “After that, I figured I could pull away but was still worried about (Patrick) Crabtree and his long run speed which was comparable to ours.” Fortunately for Luza, Crabtree had even more difficulty getting around Hudson as the battle for second place raged for the final 15 laps – enabling Luza to drive off to a nearly four second lead. Asked [...]

Marneef Wins Race, Championship Battle at Indy

by Seth Eggert on March 11th, 2015

192
Racing Game

The twelfth and final week of the 2015 Season 1 iRacing.com IndyCar Oval Series sent the competitors to the Indianpolis Motor Speedway.  A grand total of 212 sim-racers took to the historic track throughout a week when aero-push, cautions, handling, high attrition rates, lap traffic, pit road exits, pit strategy and tire wear – not to mention a championship battle — were just some of the storylines that played-out. Championship leader Nigel Marneef (Benelux) started on pole with Derek M Murray (UK and I) on his outside. Marneef’s championship rival Vick Caudill (Michigan) started third with Brandon Trost (Pennsylvania) fourth, and Christopher Demeritt (New Jersey) rounding out the top five starting positions. Before the field even left the grid positions, Seth Eggert (Carolina) realized he still had the qualifying set-up [...]

SafeisFast with Shane van Gisbergen

by David Phillips on March 10th, 2015

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racing games

V8 Supercars star Shane van Gisbergen is no stranger to iRacing or iRacers. He has more than iRacing 800 starts to his credit and has collected a total of 263 wins . . . and as evidence of Shane’s multi-faceted talent, 131 of those wins came on the ovals as compared to his 132 road course wins. Shane is also the latest “Ask a Pro” instructor for SAFEisFAST.com presented by Honda Performance Development, a free online resource offering video tutorials on safety, fitness, mental skills, race craft, career development, sponsorship, marketing and more to assist the careers of drivers in all forms of racing. Questions for Shane can be submitted here: http://safeisfast.com/ask_a_pro/49-shane-van-gisbergen

Tanson’s Title, Carroll’s Race

by Cam Stark on March 10th, 2015

167
Schwitter was certainly a man on a mission.

The last round of the season; and still the final points standings weren’t set in stone. Gregory Tanson had a comfortable lead heading in to Silverstone, but with a fantastic finish from Jan Schwitter the top of the standings could quite possibly change. The 2.023 mile circuit had many overtaking opportunities around its 17 corner configuration; I’m sure plenty of clear-cut chances could appear at the end of the long straights – with Hangar straight being an ideal place to optimize the use of draft before the sweeping right hander of Stowe. Maksym Yefanov took pole position with a 1.40.434, whilst Schwitter lined up a very close second position – in doing so had the ideal position if he intended to make any early gains; permitting on a good get-a-way. [...]

Qualifying Was Close, Race Was Closer

by Justin Sutton on March 10th, 2015

55
Three-wide once again.

Road America is undoubtedly one of the best circuits in the country, and when the swarm of over 50 sim-racers from the UK&I Skip Barber League land for a ten lap race the legendary nature of the circuit is highlighted for all to see.  Matthew Daniels took pole position by two thousandths of a second with Sebastian Job alongside him in second while championship leader Tom Ward sat in third. Ward went on the early attack at Turn Five of the first lap with the inside line on both Job and Daniels as well.  Ward and Daniels went side by side into Turn Six but Daniels carried more speed around the outside and then Job took the inside line at Turn Seven on Ward, dropping him back down to his [...]

Majeski Returns To SARA Victory Lane

by Matt Rolfe on March 9th, 2015

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SLM_Lanier_Story

After taking nearly a month off to race his real iRacing.com Super Late Model, Ty Majeski returned to Sim Auto Racing Association (SARA) competition last week, and he returned with a bang. He picked up a Sportsman Street Stock pole and victory last Tuesday night, and repeated the feat on Wednesday when he did the same thing in the MRolfeDesigns Pro Late Model Series. Majeski would join the RB Performance Super Late Model Series on Thursday night as well, and looked to see if he could make it three-in-a-row in his sim iRacing.com ride. In Week #7 of the RB Performance Super Late Model series, the division took to the darkness in Braselton, Georgia for the Lanier One-Fifty event, and the race would see 28 official starters with Ty Majeski [...]

Burnin’ Rubber & Cash: Vegas

by Dylan Schmidt on March 9th, 2015

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Vegas

Viva Las Vegas!  I love this town.  There’s always plenty to do, stuff to see, and money to make. Last week, we left Hotlanta with a little over $2.27 million in the bank, a chassis with barely any damage, and a great engine.  We had to repair some sheet metal and most of the more friable parts, but overall we left with a great car that we barely had to tweak to get ready for this week.  Gotta love the cookie-cutters, am I right?  More good news: we picked up another major sponsor this week.  After my deal with “The Adventures of Kratos Danger” is over, I’ll be partnering with DC Comics for a few weeks.  I’m very excited about working with a multi-national company, it’s a fantastic opportunity.  I [...]

From A Dig Motorsports’ “Tough Trucks” – Midwest Style!

by Scott Smith on March 9th, 2015

117
Class C Scott Smith Iowa2

When thinking about short track racing in NASCAR, legendary names like Bristol, Martinsville, Richmond and the deceased North Wilkesboro usually top the list.  Well, its time to add another one: Iowa Speedway!  The 7/8-mile track located in “America’s Heartland” provides some of the best side-by-side racing on the schedule.  The Newton, Iowa track opened in 2006 and has hosted a myriad of real-world races, ranging from lower rung NASCAR series, to the high-tech grip-machines of the Indy Racing League.  The native Missourian, and former NASCAR Winston Cup Champion, Rusty Wallace, had a hand in the design of the track.  Taking blueprint ideas from Richmond International Raceway, the influence is evident on track.  Progressive banking in the corners from 12-14 degrees allows the bottom, middle and top grooves all to be [...]