THE VIRTUAL ROCKINGHAM, N.C. — On Tuesday night, the second leg of the eNASCAR iRacing Road-To-Pro Series took place at a track that, in the real world hasn’t seen NASCAR action since 2013, that being Rockingham Speedway.
“The Rock” was a staple on the NASCAR Cup Series schedule from 1965 until 2004, and saw two races a year on said schedule every year except the first and the last.
When the track returned to action in 2012 with the NASCAR Gander RV and Outdoors Truck Series, iRacing added it to their service later that same year.
The NASCAR reunion tour didn’t last too long, as after the 2013 season, it was removed from the schedule, cited as a repercussion of financial struggles.
Now in it’s third season of competition, the eNASCAR iRacing Road-To-Pro Series has revived the North Carolina-based track, virtually, as 624 iRacers took to the 1.017 mile ‘D’ shaped oval for the second week on the series calendar.
There were 19 splits this week, down from 26 two weeks ago in the first race week at Daytona International Speedway.
Ryan Doucette (7121 iRating, 4th in points) was the big winner, taking the Top split victory on Tuesday night after a two-tire gamble and a handful of good restarts in the closing stages of the event.
The other split winners from Tuesday night included:
2nd Split: Mitchell Hunt (6518 iRating, 5th in points)
3rd Split: Brodie Kostecki (6295 iRating, 10th in points)
4th Split: Ethan Lane (6016 iRating, 9th in points)
5th Split: Brandon Hauck (5610 iRating, 143rd in points)
6th Split: Thomas Hazard (5251 iRating, 162nd in points)
7th Split: Aaron Rodgers (4817 iRating, 21st in points)
8th Split: Bryan P Johnson (4353 iRating, 118th in points)
9th Split: Scott Crump (3851 iRating, 192nd in points)
10th Split: Calvin A Allison (3567 iRating, 261st in points)
11th Split: Justin Kirby (3404 iRating, 223rd in points)
12th Split: Vern Bradley (2869 iRating, 130th in points)
13th Split: Matthew Woods2 (2689 iRating, 325th in points)
14th Split: Cody Siegel (2596 iRating, 376th in points)
15th Split: Shawn Kimball (2249 iRating, 433rd in points)
16th Split: Andrew Kotska (2031 iRating, 375th in points)
17th Split: Leigh Overton (1737 iRating, 529th in points)
18th Split: Michael Henry4 (1534 iRating, 530th in points)
19th Split: Jeremy Crandall (1228 iRating, 636th in points)
There were no repeat winners from week one, so through two weeks, there are 45 drivers who have taken a virtual checkered flag in the 2020 RTP season.
The top seven splits all had higher strength of field (SOF) numbers than in Week 1, with the Top split SOF at a 7261 iRating. Daytona’s Top split SOF was at a 7169 iRating.
Eight of the splits went past the scheduled distance of 180 laps, including the Top split and Bottom split. The most laps run was 195 laps, completed in both the second and seventh splits.
There were no splits with 34 drivers this week. The Top 16 splits had 33 truck fields, while the bottom three had 32.
In the 18th split, the winner, Michael Henry4, led the most laps out of everyone, all 180 laps in his event, and was the only driver this week to do so.
Meanwhile, Vince Marsh (3820 iRating, 152nd in points) from the 10th split, led the most laps out of anyone without capturing the victory (141 laps led), ultimately finishing second.
In total, 97 drivers led at least one lap at Rockingham Speedway, and 92 of those drivers led two laps or more.
Only 18 drivers have finished in the Top 5 in both race weeks. A staggering 207 drivers have finished in the Top 5 in either of the two weeks.
482 drivers have made both starts on the season, with 1001 drivers showing with at least one start total.
The current Top 20 in the points:
- Jordy Lopez, Jr. (7395 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 755 points
- Seth DeMerchant (8202 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 744 points
- Adam Gilliland (6559 iRating, 2nd split in Week 2) 737 points
- Ryan Doucette (7121 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 672 points
- Mitchell Hunt (6518 iRating, 2nd split in Week 2) 667 points
- Cody Byus (7284 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 666 points
- Zack Nichols (6753 iRating, 2nd split in Week 2) 630 points
- Brad Wright (5663 iRating, 4th split in Week 2) 620 points
- Ethan Lane (6016 iRating, 4th split in Week 2) 601 points
- Brodie Kostecki (6295 iRating, 3rd split in Week 2) 596 points
- Joey Israelson (5808 iRating, 4th split in Week 2) 596 points
- Brian Mercurio (6670 iRating, 2nd split in Week 2) 595 points
- Collin Bowden (5735 iRating, 5th split in Week 2) 583 points
- Will Norton (7157 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 574 points
- Drew Faryniarz (7311 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 566 points
- Jake Matheson (6744 iRating, 2nd split in Week 2) 561 points
- Christian Pedersen (5971 iRating, 4th split in Week 2) 560 points
- Ryan Libby (4950 iRating, 6th split in Week 2) 558 points
- Darik Bourdeau (7365 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 556 points
- Jacob Hall (7154 iRating, Top split in Week 2) 547 points
A total of seven drivers have made a start in either week and received zero points, with Tuesday’s race adding three names to that collective total.
A total of four drivers are below the minimum 2.0 safety rating threshold following the race, and will need to get back above that number to be able to compete in the third round in two weeks.
29 drivers had more than 17 incidents on Tuesday night, and if they were still able to run, had to serve a Stop-and-Go pit penalty.
Two weeks in a row now, no drivers have hit the 25-incident limit and gotten themselves disqualified. The closest to that limit was Alex Rudolph (1482 iRating, 796th in points) who hit 24 incidents in the 18th split, yet was still able to finish 19th in his race.
Rudolph as has the most incidents on the season, at 35, and is one of the four drivers who is below the minimum 20 safety rating. Ouch.
Kristoffer Hamann (1709 iRating, 966th in points) has the least amount of points with two starts, only with five points earned over said races.
ROAD-TO-PRO RACE WEEK 2 IN TWEETS
Here are some of the community highlights from Tuesday night’s race at Rockingham:
Top spilt Road to Pro winner 🏁 pic.twitter.com/CFRvt4kYLP
— Ryan Doucette (@RacerRyan77) March 25, 2020
Finished P3 in the Road to Pro race tonight at Rockingham! This is exactly what I needed after a rough start at Daytona. Thanks to @Lowline_Racing for building a rocket.
— Blade Whitt (@Blade_Whitt) March 25, 2020
— Proximity Racing (@ProximityRacing) March 25, 2020
Road to Pro Rockingham. Was doing pretty well, saving tires and moving up. 3 laps to go running 5th and some genius stacks it up on the restart ruining my race. 🤬🤬 I had a chance to win!
— Alek @ (@AlekChamberlin) March 25, 2020
Ended up P7 in week 2 of Road to Pro. Had a fantastic truck on the short run but couldn’t hang on in long run. Can’t be too upset about 40 laps lead and the fastest lap though. pic.twitter.com/MqtfTkfakM
— Tucker Minter (@Jrgreatdriver) March 25, 2020
Qualified 17th and finished 6th, not a bad night for The Road To Pro. Last third of the race was all wreck avoidance and I somehow managed to survive. Hopefully next time we can get the chrome dome a top 5 😎 #Phase2 #GearHeadCoffee #RTP pic.twitter.com/iNToE3sE24
— Dustin Kleba (@Dustball_2012) March 25, 2020
Round 2 of Road to Pro on @iRacing: Got that win at Rockingham boys! 8th split, so not the greatest of points nights, but it’s a W and I’ll take it. Off to Homestead!
— BPJ (@LeftTurnsOnly96) March 25, 2020
2020 eNASCAR iRacing Road to Pro Series Week 2: Rockingham Review pic.twitter.com/ajlDCCxQiJ
— Jon Adams (@Jon_Adams84) March 25, 2020
Thanks everyone for the support! @HotLapPodcast
— Lowline Racing (@Lowline_Racing) March 25, 2020
Pretty sure I had the fastest race setup in RTP tonight, but blew my qualifying lap and got swept up in a wreck. Engine smoke lap 3. Been there done that. Only race 2. We’ll dig at Homstead.
— Bryan Blackford (@bryanblack33) March 25, 2020
— Aaron Mulrooney Jr (@juniormulrooney) March 25, 2020
Nascar iracing Road to Pro Gander Truck Series at Rockingham Speedway. Had my best finish in this series so far. Started in 21st place and finished in 3rd place in Sport Clips Toyota Tundra. pic.twitter.com/9sYyXvK0YA
— Jimmie Riggs (@jrwireman14) March 25, 2020
A great truck.
A solid run. #SomethingToProve
— Richmond Raceway eSports (@RReSports) March 25, 2020
Huffman piloted his @TeamChevy to 6th before having CPU issues w/40 laps remaining.
— Total Advantage™️ (@TotalAdvantageG) March 25, 2020
P3 in 2nd Split!!! The boys at @Lowline_Racing built a ROCKETSHIP 🚀🚀🚀. Short run, long run, felt like I had the pace for anything. Got unlucky with some restarts mid-race but drove back thru the field and damn near had a chance at the W. Onto Homestead! pic.twitter.com/d23M46AKVC
— eBrian eMercurio (@Dr_Bob41) March 25, 2020
Barely missed top split, even with nearly a 7K iRating, qualified like crap yet short pit on the last green run and went from 14th to the lead. Stayed there, and then this happened for the win. I don’t know how I saved it but came home P4 somehow. #RTP #eNASCAR pic.twitter.com/npE7yQ6B5P
— Brandon Hauff (@bhauff_549) March 25, 2020
Congrats to our guys! Dominated all splits tonight and won four of the top six.
— HPM (@TheOfficialHPM) March 25, 2020
Thanks for taking my call tonight Briar and accepting my apology. I deserved the butt chewing I got here. Glad you rebounded for a 12th.https://t.co/elzbDwvs4C#nascar #simracing #iracing #enascar #esports
— Nicholas Morse (@NicMorseCO) March 25, 2020
— Garrett Manes Racing (@GarrettManes) March 25, 2020
In the 15th of 19 splits, The No. 53 @TheRacnExperts Chevy came home in 13th place
Ran around 7th-15th the entire race, set up for the short run, expected more yellows
Only hit the wall once in 180 laps (3wide dumbness)
Stats/Quirks for all 19 splits coming tomorrow! pic.twitter.com/PkSorUNQKm
— Justin Melillo (@justinmelillo) March 25, 2020
***If you’d like to see your Week 3 Road-To-Pro tweet featured on the next TRE stats recap, add #TReSports to the tweet!***
Next Tuesday, the eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series heads to Bristol Motor Speedway for the fourth round of the 2020 season. Broadcast will be on eNASCAR.com/live at 9:00 pm ET on Tuesday, March 31st, 2020.
In two weeks, the Road-To-Pro will be at Homestead-Miami Speedway for their third event of the season. Broadcast of the Top split will be live on Podium eSports at 9:00 pm ET on Tuesday, April 7th, 2020.
Other scheduled NASCAR-centric events on iRacing includes the eNASCAR Pro Invitational Series, live on FOX and FOX Sports at 1:00 pm ET on Sunday, March 29th, 2020. This week, top NASCAR talent will take to the newly-released-on-iRacing, Texas Motor Speedway.
Columnist / Reporter / Photographer / Webmaster for TheRacingExperts.com