By Team SimRacingWorld
26 August 2008
I am interested. How do I do get involved?
Register for updates on the iRacing.com Web site. We will invite you to subscribe and participate as we expand the service. Shortly the service will be available to everyone and at that point you can click on the "Subscribe" button and follow the directions to join.
Is this a game?
No, iRacing.com is not a video game. It is a subscription-based simulation service for real-world racers and racing enthusiasts, as well as a platform for a new branch of global motorsport - known as internet racing - which is the sport of real-time, online racing.
Where do I buy it?
iRacing.com Motorsport Simulations is only available at www.iracing.com.
What do I need to get started?
A relatively current home PC, broadband Internet connection, and basic steering wheel and pedals (computer version, not out of a friend's car), which can be purchased from any major electronics retailer, is all you need. iRacing.com provides information for recommended computer setups as well as links to purchase wheels and pedals. Full instructions are provided on the iRacing.com member site to help you configure your computer and controls and get started driving.
When can I start driving?
Soon. The release of the iRacing simulation has been widely anticipated throughout a lengthy development period. But the wait is nearly over.
We are not following the old-style software publishing model that emphasizes a fixed release date with a big marketing blitz; we are helping to grow a new sport, which is a much more complex task than simply launching a product. We won't make the service available to the public until we're confident it will meet or exceed expectations for quality, accuracy and authenticity. This approach demands a rolling launch and managed growth so that we can ensure a consistently high level of service to our subscribers.
How expensive will this be?
A basic subscription for one year is $13/mo. ($156), which comes with a variety of content (cars and tracks) to get you started. As you progress in your internet racing career or if you have interest in testing a particular car or track, you may choose to buy additional content, but it is our goal and philosophy that no one with a real interest in the sport will be excluded.
What forms of payments does iRacing accept?
Payment options include Mastercard, Visa and American Express debit or credit cards. Other alternatives are prepaid bank debit/credit cards. Paypal will be accepted in the near future.
What kind of computer will I need?
In general, the simulation is designed to work on most home PCs currently available in stores. You may also choose to upgrade to a mid-range, dedicated 3D video card.
The minimum specs for a PC are:
- Windows XP or Windows Vista
- Hyperthreaded Intel CPU, AMD Athlon 64 CPU, or any dual-core CPU
- 128MB Pixel Shader 2.0 (ATI 9700Pro or nVidia 6600 or better); 256 MB Pixel Shader 3.0 (ATI X1600 or nVidia 6800 GT/GS or better recommended) graphics adapter
- 1 GB system RAM
- 3Gb free hard disk space
- Steering wheel and pedals required
- Microphone optional, required for voice chat
Internet Browser Requirements
- Firefox 1.5, Internet Explorer 6, or newer
- Cookies enabled
- Flash Player
Internet Connection Speed
- 56K dial-up at a minimum, Broadband (DSL or Cable) highly recommended. Satellite broadband excluded.
When/how often will you provide updates?
New partner announcements, feature updates, updates on track and car development, as well as other news will be posted frequently on both the public site and member site. Although frequency will vary, we expect to have updates at least twice each month.
I am familiar with NASCAR Racing: 2003, is this a mod of NASCAR Racing: 2003 Season?
No. We used the NR2003 code as a starting point, taking advantage of its greatest strengths, such as the net code, which allows full fields of drivers to race online in real time, and the replay system, which enables drivers to review their on-track performance. But every major section of the code has been substantially improved for the iRacing.com simulation, and large portions are all new.
Do you sell or support the NASCAR Racing: 2003 simulation?
No. While we own the NASCAR Racing: 2003 engine, neither we nor any other commercial entity has a legal right to distribute or derive profit from NR2003. After the license that Vivendi (the publisher that owned NASCAR Racing: 2003 before we purchased the rights) had to use the trademarks involved in NR2003 expired in 2004, any remaining copies had to be removed from shelves.
How do cars/tracks get chosen?
Cars and tracks are added through partnerships between iRacing.com and other entities within the motorsport industry. They are selected to enhance the breadth and depth of our offering, covering multiple ladders of advancement based on the various disciplines within the sport (e.g., road racing, oval-track racing, stockcars, formula cars, sports cars and sedans). For more information about partnerships with iRacing.com, please visit our Partners page within this site.
Will you sponsor my racing/driving efforts?
While we encourage everyone in their on-track endeavors, we are not offering any sponsorship at this time.
Will I be able to drive all of the cars and tracks offered by iRacing.com?
Yes. Just as in real-world racing, iRacing.com features talent ladders that drivers can climb, based on their experience, the skills they have acquired and their record of on-track safety. iRacing.com also offers you the opportunity to drive cars and tracks you would never have access to in the real world. And while for organized competition drivers need to progress through increasingly demanding license levels, all members have access to unlimited test sessions with any content, cars or tracks, that they've purchased.
Will iRacing.com support private leagues, allowing groups of friends to run invitation-only races?
One of our highest priorities is to develop ways to fulfill requests for individual races and leagues. Will iRacing.com have racing clubs and competition among clubs?
Yes, iRacing.com will be starting out with 10 different geographically based clubs, which will add a team element to competition. With many different ways for members to contribute to their club's success, the clubs will provide everyone an opportunity to get involved in the community, regardless of their skill level or particular area of interest.
How did the relationship between John Henry and Dave Kaemmer come about?
John got into simracing back in 1990, when he bought Dave's first title, "Indianapolis 500, The Simulation," and a set of controls for his PC. He loved road racing and spent a lot of time with Geoff Crammond's "Grand Prix," getting progressively more involved with the sport over the years. After he bought the Red Sox in 2002, John remembered hearing that Papyrus was located in the Boston area, so he stopped in to introduce himself to Dave, and while he was there the team showed him an early version of NASCAR Racing: 2003 Season. John had so much fun driving it that he decided to form a league and eventually 50 or 60 of his friends were racing in it. That was the genesis of iRacing. Dave and John both shared a passion for simracing - what it was and what they both thought it could be.
Will development of iRacing continue beyond your public launch?
Yes, as a subscription-based service with digital distribution, iRacing - including the simulation software and the member website - will be continually expanded and enhanced. We'll add content, features and functionality regularly, and, of course, the community will grow and evolve.
Will iRacing feature only licensed products?
Yes, all of our cars and tracks are officially licensed. Authenticity and realism are our touchstones, so fantasy properties wouldn't really fit. And we respect the right of manufacturers, constructors and track owners to control what's theirs: their names, logos, likenesses and reputations. We will never model anything without the owner's permission to do so. That said, all of our licenses are non-exclusive, leaving our partners free to do business with anyone they choose. Locking up properties doesn't serve our interest, that of our partners or internet racing in general.
Will there be any place for modders, league admins, etc. in the future of iRacing?
Our service is highly integrated; it's the only way we know that we can ensure the kind of seamless, user-friendly, high-quality experience that we believe is necessary to expand the simracing community beyond its current boundaries. But we will address our customers' desires for individualization. From the start, they'll be able to paint their cars and customize their driving suits and helmets, and we're looking into ways to support leagues and pick-up races within the iRacing structure. If by "modders" you mean people who create their own cars and tracks, at this point we don't have a way for them to build content that would work within our simulation. We understand that to some members of the simracing community modding is as important - if not more so - as the actual racing. We're glad that the community is broad enough to support that approach as well as ours.
What is FIRST versus iRacing?
iRacing.com Motorsport Simulations, LLC is the name of the company; iRacing (or iRacing.com) is the name of our online simulation service, and FIRST is the sanctioning body that presides over all internet racing at iRacing.com. In much the same way that the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) oversees the American Le Mans Series, FIRST will manage all sporting aspects of iRacing.com. The objective of FIRST is to create a fair, rewarding and competitive environment for all iRacing members.
Is iRacing solely an online simulation, or can it be driven offline?
iRacing is an online-only simulation service and an internet racing community. That said, our members will have virtually unlimited opportunities to test - any car on any track.
Will there be new, licensed cars in the future?
Yes, as we go forward there will be a great deal more content. We've licensed more than 60 tracks; with the painstaking way we build them, that's going to keep us busy for awhile. But we're already talking to other tracks about licenses. So far our focus has been on North America, but we expect significant international expansion in the next several months. And we're in licensing discussions for a number of other cars and will begin announcing some of them in the near future.
Will iRacing accept requests for new cars and tracks?
One of the advantages of being a community is that we develop a regular dialog and a relationship with our members. So long as we're able to secure the appropriate licenses, we'll deliver what our customers tell us they want.
Can members re-sell content licenses (cars and tracks) when they are done with them?
We have no plans to create a secondary market in "used" cars, and we're not looking to create a virtual economy inside the community. Your car won't wear out. And while it may get damaged in a wreck, all that means is it won't drive right - or at all, depending on how hard you crashed. But in the next session your car will be good as new, and you won't have had to "pay" for the repairs.
Is there any guarantee that iRacing will continue to develop and support this product into the future?
There are no guarantees, but we are in this for the long haul. Dave Kaemmer has dedicated 20 years, basically his entire professional career, to making the most authentic simulations possible, and the core of our company is made up of people who have worked with Dave for much of that time. John Henry, meanwhile, is absolutely passionate about internet racing and is motivated by his desire to build a community where racers can get together, compete and share their common bond, which is a love of motorsport.
Is there any content that we are allowed to mod?
No. As clearly stated in the End User License Agreement, iRacing.com content cannot be modded. To even attempt to do so is a direct violation of the agreement. Again, the content can only be used by registered members within the iRacing service.
Do I "own" the content (cars and tracks) I have purchased?
Will I ever lose use of the content/property that I have purchased licenses for?
As iRacing officially licenses all of the content in the sim, there is a chance iRacing could lose a license to distribute a certain piece of content or property. That means you will still have access to that content but iRacing will no longer be able to sell it to new members or to actively market it. Because of that, a property could conceivably get phased out of active racing, although you would still be able to test and time trial with that property. Please also keep in mind that all of the iRacing licenses are long-term in nature or are "in-perpetuity." We hope never to lose a property, but it is possible.
Is there a minimum guarantee that the content will be available for racing for a certain amount of time?
We currently have no plans to do that. However, if we have to completely rescan and reproduce a track because it has changed dramatically we do reserve that right. You currently get normal updates for your tracks and cars for free.
Would iRacing ever want to charge me again for a property I already purchased?
Normally, you will never be subject to additional charges once you've purchased a piece of content, including for the normal revisions to tracks and cars as their physical-world counterparts change. The only scenario in which we anticipate the possibility of additional charges would be if a race track has been so substantially changed that the facility must be entirely or almost entirely re-scanned and our model of it reconstructed.
Can I send suggestions and feedback to iRacing about the product and service?
Yes, you can send feedback on the product and service from the Support Section of our member site. We view this as simple feedback. We appreciate the time and energy people put into this feedback to improve the service. Please understand that any ideas you suggest might already be under consideration and that any feedback or suggestions offered will be deemed to be unsolicited and voluntary and that no consideration will be given for such feedback or suggestions.
Can I copy iRacing content off the iRacing websites or materials and use for other purposes?
iRacing.com's images, marks or trademarks may only be used for any purpose with written permission from an authorized iRacing employee.
If I purchase a membership, how many people can use it?
Just you; it is a single-user license.
Can I download iRacing onto a second computer if I am a member?
Yes. Each license is a single-user license, but if you have other computers that you personally use for conveniences sake to log onto the iRacing.com service, you are permitted to download and install the service on additional computers for your personal use as a member of iRacing. e.g., you may have one computer at home and a second computer that you use for travel, at work or a second residence.
What if I buy a new computer? Do I need to inform iRacing?
No. You may download and install all of the iRacing software for which you are licensed onto your new computer at no additional charge.