NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Timmy Hill drove to a commanding win in last night’s 4thAnnual iRacing Pro Race of Champions. Starting on the front row at the virtual Iowa Speedway, Hill drove his digital Super Late Model into the lead when pole sitter, defending champion – and German Porsche Carrera Cup champion — Phillip Eng went wide in the first turn. Hill never looked back and went on to win by more than 14 seconds over IMSA champion Alex Gurney and NASCAR K&N Pro Series driver Michael Self.
“Off the get-go Phillip hit the apron, shot up towards the wall and that kind of ended his race before it even got started,” said Hill, whose brother Tyler earned his first win in the NASCAR iRacing Pro Series on Tuesday. “After that, I just had to set sail and take care of the tires. I knew if I took care of the tires and kept those guys behind me, I could have a pretty good race. Those guys raced side-by-side and let me get out to a pretty good lead and it was like cruise control.”
“It was like cruise control.” — Timmy Hill
“Those guys” – Shane Van Gisbergen (V8 Supercars), Frank Kimmel II (ARCA) and Michael Self (NASCAR K&N Pro Series) – raced side-by-side for second place before Kimmel tapped Van Gisbergen into a spin that collected all three drivers. The incident paved the way for Gurney to complete an impressive run from his seventh starting spot, a marked turn-around from last year’s result.
“I did this race last year and crashed out, so I focused on being conservative, and making it to the end,” said Gurney who, along with Trans-Am champion Tommy Kendall, IndyCar driver Townsend Bell and Tudor United Sportscar Championship drivers Patrick Long and Michael Lewis, competed in the event at the headquarters of CXC Simulations. “This was a stacked field, with lots of good racers. It’s fun to mix it up with those guys and you get to do it without the danger factor. You still get a lot of the same buzz as being in an actual car. It’s very realistic. You really have to scrape the barrel to get every last bit of lap time.”
Self recovered from the Lap 40 incident to finish third ahead of Van Gisbergen while Kimmel finished a lap down in fifth in a field that included IndyCar’s Justin Wilson, the NHRA’s Ron Capps and Formula One/NASCAR driver-turned Global Rallycrosser Scott Speed.
The race raised more than $4000 for charity with Hill, appropriately, donating the lion’s share of the purse to the Lions Club. Gurney and Self donated their winnings to the Boggy Creek Camp and the Human Society of the United States, respectively.