Recapping the 2021 RealSimRacing Series So Far

With the All-Star race looming, perhaps it is at long last time for a belated article regarding my performance so far in the RealSimRacing Sim Seats Cup Series. After all, as I have chosen to no longer compete in American SimRacing League, RealSimRacing has my sole devotion when it comes to league racing. Moreover, with my graduate school studies concluded, I should have more availability to devote to more frequent analysis of my performance in the league… as well as practice behind the wheel!

The first half (and a bit more) of the 2021 season so far has been lackluster for me at best, as I have earned a mere two top-10 finishes in points-paying races so far–a pair of 10th place finishes at Bristol Dirt and at Dover. The IROC Series stats tell a different story, with three top-10s–two of which are a 5th place and 3rd place finish.

My gradually blossoming skillset just has not graduated to a level on par with the impressive competition level presented by RealSimRacing. This is the most competitive the league has ever been, in my view. While bad luck has followed me to venues like Daytona, Richmond, and Charlotte–places where I can usually eek out strong finishes–the common denominator of my RSR season so far has been slower-than-needed pace and poor pit strategy.

Despite the 30+ other competitors on the track, my perennial inability to manage tire consumption has been my worst enemy so far. This has made itself manifest at the 1.5-miler tracks in embarrassing fashion. If I can learn and practice throttle discipline, then I can perform much better.

My many laps of practice at Dover proved useful, as I ran within or near the top ten positions and was on track for a top-7 finish throughout the event. Despite having the lower hand in a late-race tire strategy play by the Keepin’ It Real fellows, I managed to finish 10th. These are the types of races that give me hope–to know that I “get it” going into a race, having practiced by testing and racing in the NASCAR iRacing Series beforehand, and to hit my marks and keep the throttle and brake discipline throughout, I am encouraged that I can score strong finishes on talent alone. That is what will get me gradually closer to the race victory that I so long for. Raw speed is the best of guarantees.

While disappointment abounds for my showing so far, I do take solace in my 14th place position in the points standings, and my refusal to give up when either being my own worst enemy, or when circumstances outside of my control inhibit me from building a solid finish. Whether it was wrestling my wrecked car to the finish line at Daytona, or slugging around Charlotte while multiple laps down following getting destroyed early in the race, I fight to the bitter end. (Doing the latter meant finishing either 36th or 29th–and that amount of points could be the difference come time for the playoffs.)

An average finish of 19th is certainly not what I had in mind for this season so far, but I have good reason to believe that the upcoming races following the All-Star race at Twin Ring Motegi and before the playoffs begin will see pronounced improvement by the #12 car. It is no small task to defeat the likes of Eberhardt, Faryniarz, Buie, Danson, and the rest of that frustratingly talented lot.

Race Date Event / Track Started Finished Race Winner 
1-Feb-21 The Clash – iRacing Superspeedway 2nd 4th Nick Marra 
8-Feb-21 Duel #2 – Daytona International Speedway Oval 12th 15th Dane Kruse 
15-Feb-21 Round 1 – Daytona International Speedway Oval 30th 12th Jeremy Miller 
22-Feb-21 Off Week – IROC Round 1 – Daytona 16th 8th Nick Silver 
1-Mar-21 Round 2 – Homestead-Miami Speedway Oval 9th 17th Brandon Buie 
8-Mar-21 Round 3 – Las Vegas Motor Speedway Oval 21st 21st Daniel E Eberhardt 
15-Mar-21 Round 4 – Phoenix Raceway Oval w/open dogleg 25th 23rd Agnel Philip 
22-Mar-21 Off Week – IROC Round 2 – Michigan 9th 17th Daniel E Eberhardt 
29-Mar-21 Round 5 – Bristol Motor Speedway Dirt –  Single Pit Roads 17th 10th Andrew Faryniarz 
12-Apr-21 Off Week – IROC Round 3 – Kansas 12th 3rd Nick Silver 
19-Apr-21 Round 6 – Richmond Raceway 20th 27th Andrew Faryniarz 
26-Apr-21 Round 7 – Talladega Superspeedway 32nd 16th Sean Casto 
3-May-21 Round 8 – Kansas Speedway Oval 39th 21st Andrew Faryniarz 
10-May-21 Off Week – IROC Round 4 – Talladega 4th 5th Dylan R Coyle 
17-May-21 Round 9 – Dover International Speedway 15th 10th Andrew Faryniarz 
24-May-21 Round 10 – Circuit of the Americas Grand Prix 21st 21st Matt Danson 
31-May-21 Round 11 – Charlotte Motor Speedway Oval – 2018 26th 29th Brian Chambliss 
7-Jun-21 Round 12 – Sonoma Raceway Cup 22nd 21st Matt Danson 

Ross Cado
Owner, Fast Forward Esports