Special from the Nashville Tennessean (Wednesday, April 22, 2020) – Jackson Boone credits iRacing for helping him win the featured pro late model championship at Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway last year, and he will get even more help from the simulated online video game in the future.
The historic track was laser scanned recently by iRacing.com Motorsports Simulations at the insistence of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and will be available for subscribers in the fall.
iRacing has reached a new level popularity during the coronavirus pandemic. Current NASCAR Cup drivers and others, including Earnhardt, have joined FOX Sports to keep fans entertained by participating in the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series.
“iRacing has taught me over the years how to keep car control and how to save a car,” said Boone, 19, who is from Franklin. “At Nashville (Fairgrounds) one year we had a problem with one of our brake lines and I went into a corner and hit the brakes and the car almost got around on me. I credit iRacing with actually saving the car because I remember having to save the car in a similar situation in iRacing.”
Boone had to pull off that maneuver on a different track. In the fall he will be able to iRace on the Nashville Fairgrounds’ 5/8-mile oval on his computer.
“iRacing kind of taught me the ability to do things really quickly without thinking about it; learning those reflexes,” Boone said. “It already has helped me and with Nashville being on there it will be an added bonus.”
The decision to add Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway was made by iRacing executive vice president and producer Steve Myers after Earnhardt kept after him to get it done.
Earnhardt also talked Myers into scanning North Wilkesboro Speedway, another historic track located in North Carolina. The tentative plan is to release North Wilkesboro in the summer.
“It was totally Dale Jr. — he’s the reason we did the Nashville Fairgrounds and North Wilkesboro,” Myers said. “Those are like his pets and he finally beat me up enough so we went and did it. He’s relentless on those two topics.”
Earnhardt began his career racing at the Fairgrounds and supports the effort to bring NASCAR back to the track.
By: Mike Organ – Nashville Tennessean
Photo: Mark Zaleski – Nashville Tennessean