Richmond Raceway and Sunoco have partnered to continue the evolution of the track’s growing eSports platform. Sunoco, the official fuel of NASCAR since 2004 and the exclusive fuel provider for all three national racing series in the sport, will be the naming rights sponsor for the entire Richmond Raceway eSports program including competing in the eNASCAR Peak Antifreeze iRacing Series (NPAiS) as well as hosting over 20 eSports race competitions on Xbox One and Playstation 4 this year. The program’s official name is Richmond Raceway eSports Fueled by Sunoco.
“The world of eSports is growing in NASCAR and around the world, and Richmond continues to be at the forefront of its development,” said Richmond President Dennis Bickmeier. “Partnering with Sunoco, we have a partner that is driving value to this new venture and recognizes the importance of connecting with a new generation of fans. We look forward to working closely with Sunoco as we continue to support the growth of eSports in NASCAR.”
As the presenting sponsor for Richmond Raceway eSports, Sunoco will have naming rights associated with all Richmond Raceway eSports activations and entitlement sponsorship of individual competitions that Richmond hosts. Over the past year, Richmond has grown its eSports presence through competing in the NAPiS, season-long fan competition on the NASCAR Heat series by 704Games, and introduction of the Richmond Raceway Simulator for outbound events. Richmond is the only track participating in these eSports platforms.
“We are excited to partner with Richmond Raceway eSports as we find new and different ways to connect with a new generation of NASCAR fans and loyal Sunoco customers,” said Fred McConnell, Director of Brand & Consumer Marketing, Sunoco. “Richmond has been a leader within the NASCAR industry through its eSports programs, so we are thrilled to have the opportunity to work with them and integrate the Sunoco brand into the platform.”
The partnership will kick off when the state-of-the-art Richmond Raceway Simulator is loaded into the Sunoco Injector at Daytona International Speedway for fan activations throughout DAYTONA Speedweeks Presented By AdventHealth. Sunoco has its injector closest to the Ticket and Tours Building, with a view of Turn 4, at Daytona International Speedway. The Richmond Raceway Simulator will be active for fans to drive from the moment gates open to the waving of the green flag for the 61st Annual DAYTONA 500 and all other Daytona International Speedway events on Feb. 14-17.
The Richmond Raceway Simulator is an interactive two-seat, in-car driving simulator that allows fans to get behind the wheel to drive Richmond’s famed ¾-mile D-shaped oval and 79 other tracks including some select Racing Virginia tracks. The Richmond Raceway Simulator is powered by iRacing, the world’s premier motorsports racing simulation platform. Richmond-based Sim Seats designed and installed the hardware for the simulator. The Richmond Raceway Simulator is featured at select outbound events throughout the year.
2019 marks the second year Richmond Raceway eSports Fueled by Sunoco will compete in the eNASCAR Peak Antifreeze iRacing Series. In this season’s first-ever draft, the team selected Jimmy Mullis and Malik Ray to represent the team. This will be Mullis’ second year with the team, while Ray will be competing with the team and in the series for the first time.
Ray will drive the No. 90 in honor of Richmond native and long-time NASCAR team owner, Junie Donlavey. His No. 90 team represented NASCAR in the 1976 24 Hours of LeMans, then got its only Cup victory with Jody Ridley at Dover 1981. Donlavey was one of the inaugural members of the Garage Walk of Honor at Richmond, which was unveiled this past September in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series in the new DC Solar FanGrounds. The No. 90 paint scheme will consist of the Sunoco colors and branding.
The NPAiS will showcase 40 of the world’s best sim racers across 12 different teams. NASCAR teams Joe Gibbs Racing, JR Motorsports, Wood Brothers Racing, and Roush Fenway Racing are fielding cars in the series. NPAiS is will be celebrating its 10th season in 2019. There will be 18 races in 2019, taking place every two weeks. The season kicks off on Feb. 12 at Daytona International Speedway, and ends in mid-October with the championship race at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Richmond Raceway eSports Fueled by Sunoco will also host a NASCAR Heat 3 League, where fans can test their skills against one another. The league will be available on both Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and will run in two five-week sessions. The first league will take place February through March prior to the Toyota Spring Race Weekend, and the second league will begin in July and end in August prior to the NASCAR Playoff Race Weekend. One grand prize winner will be selected along with second and third place finishers.
For more information on Richmond Raceway eSports Fueled by Sunoco, visit richmondraceway.com/esports.
Richmond Raceway 2019 NASCAR Season
The 2019 NASCAR season at Richmond returns “under the lights” for both race weekends hosting the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) at America’s Premier Short Track.
Richmond’s NASCAR Playoff Race Weekend will start the NXS Playoffs with the Go Bowling 250 playoff race and host the second race of the Monster Energy Series Playoffs with the Federated Auto Parts 400 playoff race on Sept. 20-21.
Tickets for the Toyota Spring Race Weekend on April 12-13 and Fall Playoff Race Weekend on Sept. 20-21 are available for purchase in-person at the Richmond Ticket Office, via phone at 866-455-7223, or online at richmondraceway.com.
The Pro All Stars Series (PASS) will run the inaugural PASS Commonwealth Classic on Saturday, March 30 at Richmond. The PASS Super Late Models will headline the day with feature events for Tour-Type Modifieds, MASS Street Stocks, Mini Stocks, and American-Canadian Tour (ACT) Late Models. To learn more or purchase tickets, visit richmondraceway.com or proallstarsseries.com.