In what has become a yearly tradition over on the iRacing.com servers, as many real world race car drivers as possible are lumped into a private session for a charity pickup race dubbed the iRacing.com Pro Race of Champions. While not taking away from the fact that the event is hosted for a good cause, PRC.net reader Anthony P. has written to us explaining that the actual racing portion of the program is absolutely dreadful.
Hey guys, thought I’d give a coverage suggestion.
The iRacing Pro Race of Champions just concluded (if you’re not aware, it’s a charity race featuring real-world pro drivers) and like last time, it was a bit of a mess. Not only was the driving terrible (by the end of it, only 6 drivers out of 25 finished on the lead lap) but the coverage itself was horrible. Terrible video quality, terrible audio quality, terrible commentary, they even made mistakes trying to do iRacing adverts like saying that there is an Aston Martin GT3 car in the game (sorry I can’t link to a time stamp, can’t sit through that mess again).
It also featured a not-so talked about bug with the new PopcornFX system where in replay mode all PopcornFX related sounds (tire sounds, kerbs, gravel noise, etc) play directly near you no matter how far away the camera is. This means insanely loud kerb/tire noises during the race coverage.
Anyways, just a suggestion. iRacing has been pushing this type of coverage a lot recently with their site re-design, and more often than not it’s absolutely terrible.
Hey Anthony, thanks for your submission.
I didn’t even know about this event until I saw a news article about it on a not-PretendRaceCars website earlier today. After watching the footage from this year, I can only say that with this kind of broadcasting iRacing will never break through and appeal to the masses. I’m sorry to say it, but the main moderator sounds very obnoxious and sometimes doesn’t seem to realize how loud he is when commentating, or rather shouting. Other than the volume of his voice, he does a pretty decent job though.
What’s bugging me the most is what you already mentioned in your submission, the constant sounds of the kerbs, off-track excursions, etc. You obviously don’t notice it when they switch to the on-board camera of a specific car, but when you have the normal TV camera position and you suddenly hear the noise of the car driving over kerbs even though you are physically a hundred meters away, it’s very confusing and for me it really destroys the immersion.
Some of the iRacing related advertisements were a little overboard. For example, during the broadcast they advertised for the recently published Nürburgring + Nordschleife track pack as “They released the Nürburgring. I mean, they released the Nürburgring, but not the GP – I mean the GP track as well – but the whooooole thing. The whole Nordschleife!!!”. He praised it as the second coming of Jesus Christ (sorry, that spot is already taken by our lord and savior Donald Trump), even though Kunos published their version of the Nordschleife (albeit a visually much less impressive one) about nine months earlier.
The thing I enjoyed most about the race was how CXR Simulations and iRacing partnered up to allow Sam Schmidt, a paraplegic IndyCar driver, to run the event by utilizing a purpose-built simulator for him. He crashed out once or twice during the race but his pace was only about 2 seconds off the lead, which is very impressive considering he was only able to use his head, eyes and mouth to control the car.
The winner of the race was Richie Stanaway, a professional racing driver and Aston Martin factory driver who at the moment drives in both the WEC and the GP2 feeder series. By winning the event, he made a $2500 donation to the Justin Wilson Children’s fund in honor of Justin Wilson, who sadly passed away this year due to a heavy accident at Pocono Raceway. His margin of victory was around 5 seconds, which considering it was a 20 lap race is a considerable margin.