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Abandoned North Wilkesboro Speedway returns to life in iRacing

Accepted submission by Anonymous Coward at 2020-05-09 04:51:21

A few weeks ago, I submitted a story about NASCAR scheduling virtual races in iRacing [] to provide entertainment for fans during the pandemic. NASCAR's virtual racing series ends this weekend at North Wilkesboro Speedway [], a track that hasn't hosted a Cup Series race since 1996 and any racing since 2011. North Wilkesboro was one of NASCAR's oldest and most unique tracks, a 0.625 mile short track built on an incline, with an uphill backstretch and downhill frontstretch. The historic track has sat largely abandoned in rural North Carolina since NASCAR left, falling into disrepair and decay []. In December, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and many other volunteers cleaned the surface of the race track to allow it to be scanned into iRacing []. This 15 minute video [] shows North Wilkesboro Speedway was cleaned up and describes the laser scanning process used to capture the track surface for iRacing, which is why the story may be of interest for SoylentNews readers. The first race at the virtual North Wilkesboro Speedway is at 3 PM EDT and will be televised on Fox and FS1 []. For those who cannot watch the race on TV, NASCAR generally streams races on YouTube within a few days of the race.

[Note to editors: This is a bit time sensitive, because the race is at 3 PM EDT today (May 9). I would have submitted this sooner but the video describing the details of the laser scanning process wasn't posted until quite recently -- and I think that's what may be primarily of interest on a website about technology.]

Original Submission