Today, we are going to look into the different iRacing Series, how they work and what you need to enter them.
There are four different disciplines in iRacing; Road Racing, Oval Racing, Dirt Road Racing and Dirt Oval Racing. Each discipline brings its own unique set of challenges and requires a wide range of skills to compete at the highest level. As you know though, they all have their own variety of series’ where you can take to the track and experience iRacing at its best, so let’s delve into their different types.
Weeks and Seasons
iRacing works with a weekly calendar, where each week there is a different track in every racing series there is. There are thirteen weeks in a season, twelve weeks of racing for championship points. The thirteenth week is a special one, in this week there comes an update for the next season, and in this week you cannot gain or lose safety rating or iRating. All the available series have a schedule, where you’ll be able to find what time the series races at, and at what tracks. From here, you can hone in on the different types of series, but first, you might realise you can’t race in all of them…
How classes affect the series’ you race in
In all the disciplines, there are classes from Rookie to A license. Every class has multiple series’ where you can earn both iRating and Safety Rating – the higher up the spectrum you get the more series’ you will unlock.
If you have a rookie license, you need a 3.0 Safety Rating or higher and drive four races or four time trials to be promoted to D class. If you have a D license or higher, you need to have a 3.5 Safety Rating or higher, and also four MPR races or four time trials. This is the same as you go up the ladder, and as you progress through here, you’ll become eligible for more series.
For example, you may use the Mazda MX-5 cup to start your journey as a rookie, once you hit D class progress to the Ferrari Challenge and at C class begin racing in the Porsche Cup Series. If you want to learn more about the iRacing license progressions system, you can read our article explaining exactly that.
Endurance and Sprint series
Amongst the plethora of series’ on offer, you may realise there’s two types of series – endurance and sprint. Endurance series’ such as the GT Endurance VRS Series is with a team, whilst most of the Sprint series are individual, with an obvious distance being their lengths, which result in this change.
With endurance racing, it’s very handy that your teammate can do the strategy when you are driving, or just split the hours with. It’s a completely different experience to the fast-paced nature of a sprint, but if you’ve got some friends who are up to trying a race, go for it, you won’t regret it. There are also special events, which are amongst some of the most prestigious endurance races like the 24 hours of Daytona, or the 24 hours of Le Mans. There are also individual races though, such as the Indy 500.
Fixed setup series
In a fixed setup race, iRacing has a standard setup or set of setups, and every driver needs to use it. In this race series, you’re not allowed to use your own setups, levelling the playing field for everyone. iRacing have setups like the baseline, low downforce, medium downforce and high downforce, but also in specific cars such as brand new Mercedes W12, which you can learn more about here, you’ll be greeted with track-specific setups.
As much as you won’t be able to use your Coach Dave Academy setups here, don’t worry, we offer data packs for the Porsche Cup series and the Ferrari challenge to keep you extracting all the time possible from your car.
Open setup series
There are also open setup championships or races. This means you can make your own setup and use it in the races, or of course, use your Coach Dave Academy setups.
Depending on which car you decide to race there are many different things you can change to help make the car suit your very own driving style – changing the handling characteristics of your car can help you gain the confidence to push the car closer to the limit and gain valuable lap time. Often, taking some time to practice and tweak the car before the race is a good idea in series’ like this.
If you drive every week in some series, you’ll be in a championship. As a driver, you’re allowed to compete in many as Official Series Races as you like, but from all the races you drive in that given week, the best 25% will count. This is based on the points a driver scored, and will be an average of each Official Series Race during that week. Eight rounds will count for the championship, so this means that if you have a bad result, or you cannot race a week, you still can have a good result in the championship. The higher the iRating, the more championship points are available for each finishing position in those races you compete in.
How we can help you
As we may already have mentioned a couple of times, here at Coach Dave Academy, we can help you through your journey amongst the various series’ iRacing has to offer. You can buy setups and data packs for many of your favourite series, all developed by our team of engineers that aim to give you the best platform to do well on.