The penultimate race of the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series just finished at Dover with a pair of familiar faces on the podium. Let’s take a look at the results and glimpse forward to next week’s finale. William Byron did it again, winning another event at the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series. That gives Hendrick Motorsport yet another notch on their belt during their domination of this Invitational. This one didn’t come easy for Byron as he took a late lead and had to hold off Christopher Bell right up until the checkered flag.
Byron closed at 7/5 (+140), which I recommended last week (when he was +175), and in hindsight, I should have bet it heavier. Byron had won two of the previous three events and, with just one race left on the season, has a chance to win 4 of the five games he has participated in. I don’t suspect his odds to be as generous this time around, but if they are even close to plus money, I would recommend backing him for another week.
I also suggested picking Timothy Hill to earn a podium finish, which he did for in all but one race so far this season. At +165, it was just too hard to pass up, and Hill ended up coming through with a third-place finish. He even leading the race for 32 of the 150 laps.
Next up, the series heads to race on one of iRacing’s newest tracks – North Wilkesboro Motorspeedway. The .625-mile circuit at the heart of the North Carolina foothills will be the seventh and final race of this series.
The fun thing about this choice of venues is that the real track was retired by NASCAR in 1996 and replaced with the Texas Motor Speedway. So, technically, this will be the first NASCAR sanctioned race for North Wilkesboro in 24 years.
With real NASCAR events expected to resume on May 17th, this is a perfect time for the eSeries to wrap up. But before it does, Byron has one more chance to flex his iRacing muscles after combining to lead 406 laps in six races. More than all other racers combined.
This will be a huge confidence booster heading back into real racing for the 22-year-old who currently sits at 19th in the Cup Series. Obviously, iRacing is very different from an actual NASCAR event. Just look at what happened two weeks ago at Talledega when Denny Hamlin’s daughter ended his day by unplugging his monitor. Things like that don’t happen in real life. But Byron mentioned he feels more confident to make high-pressure decisions toward the end of races after his success in the iRacing league.
Another fun aspect of eSports racing is the ability for literally anyone to compete if given the opportunity. It is rumored that the last person to win a race at North Wilkesboro, Jeff Gordon, will be participating in this final race. The four-time NASCAR Cup Series champ and HOF member said that he is leaning towards taking a spot in the starting grid. While it’s unlikely he will be able to overtake the youngsters on a virtual track, it will still be fun to see him in competition again.
As far as betting goes, the odds won’t be out for the final race until later in the week. But the weekly trends suggest that Byron will again be the heavy favorite while Hill probably closes around 7/1. At this point, unless the odds lengthen for Byron, he will still be a good bet to win his fifth race in seven tries. I also really like Hill to see the podium again as he’s proven consistent as accomplishing that feat week to week.
Keep an eye on the blog, and if any big news breaks that change these odds, we will update you. But as far as it stands, Byron at plus money odds is almost a no-brainer bet online for this weekend.