Sebring online race features real-world winners from IndyCar and IMSA

IMSA
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Several big names from the IndyCar and IMSA series have entered the “Sebring SuperSaturday” online event that will be streamed Saturday in a partnership with iRacing.

The 90-minute online race will happen 2:30 p.m. ET Saturday at Sebring International Raceway, which had been scheduled to host the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring this weekend (it’s been postponed to Nov. 11-14 because of the novel coronavirus outbreak).

The single-class race will feature drivers choosing cars from four GTLM options: BMW M8 GTE, Ferrari 488 GTE, Porsche 911 RSR and Ford GT. It will be streamed live on the iRacing eSports Network on YouTube and iRacing’s Twitch channel, with pre- and postrace from the Torque Show on Facebook Live.

Colton Herta, who has driven a BMW for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in the Rolex 24 the past two years, is among the active IndyCar drivers in the race. Also on the entry list are Santino Ferrucci, Dalton Kellett and Sage Karam.

Felipe Nasr, who was among the 2019 winners at the Twelve Hours of Sebring and had been scheduled to make his IndyCar debut last weekend at St. Petersburg, is on the list of prominent IMSA drivers entered in the race.

Mustang Sampling Racing drivers Joao Barbosa and Filipe Albuquerque also are entered in the online race.

“It’s great to keep in touch with the racing community through iRacing,” two-time prototype champion Barbosa, among the first to sign up, said in a release. “That’s as close as it will get for us in the next couple months. It will be fun, but our competitive spirit is always high. It’s great to keep us racing sharp and at the same time have fun and help to spend time at home.”

Here are the car choices for those drivers: Herta, BMW M8 GTE; Ferrucci, BMW M8 GTE; Kellett, TBD; Karam, Porsche 911 RSR; Nasr, BMW M8 GTE; Barbosa, Ferrari 488 GTE; Albuquerque, Porsche 911 RSR.

Some other IndyCar and sports car veterans in the event: Jesse Krohn, Jeff Segal, Gabby Chaves and Tristan Vautier.

There currently 39 drivers in the race. The official entry list will be released Friday with 15 to 20 more drivers to be added.

NBCSN, which has been broadcasting IMSA races since last season, will show a one-hour highlight show of the 2019 Twelve Hours of Sebring at 8 p.m. ET Saturday. It was the closest overall finish in the race’s 67-year history.

IMSA is among many series capitalizing on the layoff from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic by turning to iRacing.

NASCAR will begin holding all-star exhibitions with its drivers Sunday, and IndyCar and Formula One drivers are racing on worldwide online platforms, too.

Travis Pastrana leads flag-to-flag in Nitro Rallycross as the series returns to America

Pastrana Nitro Rallycross
Barry Chin / Getty Images
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Travis Pastrana waited until the final trip around ERX Motor Park to take his Joker Lap – a longer way around the course that all drivers must do at least once in a race – and came out cleanly to win his first Nitro Rallycross race of 2022. With this win, Pastrana is the third driver to visit Victory Lane in the first three rounds of the 2022-23 season.

“This is the closest to a motocross track,” Pastrana told Katie Osborne on Peacock. “Thank you so much for a beautiful facility. It’s been a rough start to the season and I’m so thankful to be back out here. We had a good run in the side-by-side and now for this. This is much needed.”

Another thing needed was the sense of improvement. And Pastrana earned that affirmation each time he completed a lap around the course.

“I get my lap times read out and they said ‘fastest time of the week,’ ‘fastest time of the week’ (each time around) ” Pastrana said. “This is really special. We’re a long way behind in the championship, but welcome to America.”

In a pre-race press conference, Pastrana said that as Nitro Rallycross heads back to America, it was time for an American to win and he made good on his promise. Pastrana took the early lead over Robin Larsson and let the back of his Subaru hang out, taking risks he might not otherwise take if not for his need to win.

How to Watch Nitro Rallycross

Larsson’s second-place finish completed a perfect sweep of the podium in three rounds. In fact, he has not yet finished worse than second after winning the opening round at Lydden Hill in the United Kingdom and finishing second at Strangnas in Sweeden.

Fraser McConnel rounded out the podium for his best result of the season. He finished fourth in each of the first two rounds.

Last year, Pastrana finished second in this race to Scott Speed before narrowly edging his teammate for the championship.

Andreas Bakkerud crashed in prelims, but rebounded to finish just off the block in fourth. Bakkerud won the second round ahead of his teammate Larsson.

Oliver Bennett completed the top five.

Minneapolis is the first of three rounds scheduled in the United States. Next on the schedule is Glen Helen, Calif. on Octo 30 and then Phoenix at Wild Horse Pass on November 12th. Nitro Rallycross will then head to Saudi Arabia in December to continue their 2022-23 season.